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Ex employer obtained personal data illegally from supplier?


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This is on behalf of my brother in law, a plumber. 

 

He is currently taking his ex employer to tribunal (after they reduced his wages without telling him, and change of contract over hours). As such he left the company and started working privately.

 

His ex-employer found out that he was using the same plumbers merchants as them and somehow persuaded them to provide them with copies of his invoices (that he has made himself since leaving). We assume they were trying to find evidence that he was 'stealing customers'.  He only found this out after the ex-employees solicitors sent a photo of these invoices to him as part of the bundle! (they took a photograph of the invoices on the plumbing merchants desk (the photo itself also had the date and time on it!)

 

I am automatically assuming that the plumbers merchant in question is in breach of the data protection act,  I am also assuming, but would like clarity that the ex-employer is also in breach, not sure if the solicitor is also as they were not aware of how it was obtained, although it has since been pointed out to them. 

I should also add that I am not 100% sure if the customers details were on the invoice ( as they would have been delivered to their location).

 

It should also be noted that he also requested a Subject Access Request (in order help track his time sheets for the last year (they were not given duplicates)| and to find out how/ who  authorised the change to his salary).  The Ex-employer stated he was  unable to supply this in the standard time period and also missed the extended three month period, and I believe a complaint was made under GDPR about this, don't think anything was done though).

 

Any thoughts on this.

 

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When you said "He only found this out after the ex-employees solicitors sent a photo of these invoices... " did you mean "He only found this out after the ex-employers solicitors sent a photo of these invoices ..."?  Were these sent as part of the ex-employer's response to your brother in law's Tribunal claim?

 

Has the Tribunal hearing taken place yet?  Is your BiL being represented by a solicitor or union official? Is he in a union?

 

Tagging @Emmzziwho is knowledgeable about employment matters.

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Yes, sorry my mistake,  the ex-employers solicitors sent it to us. 
he was not a union member (he will be in future!) , so the mother in law is running this, though she has an friendly HR-Director (who has tribunal experience) reviewing her documents on that side. But this data breach has just come up!
 

The work covered by the invoice is actually for a family member so it’s not even taking customers from the ex-employer, and yes they were sent as part of the tribunal claim (I understand it’s not scheduled for a few months). 
 

in terms of the tribunal, he found out that all of a sudden they were docking his pay for breaks (their booking system for jobs effectively never gave them time for lunch breaks, but those hours were always accepted as overtime claims previously), and his hourly wage was reduced. There was no confirmation verbal or written agreement to show any changes in contract 

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There is no offence, but there is often a contractual clause banning this, which may (I assume) affect any tribunal if it could be shown that the employee was attempting to damage their former employers business by taking customers.

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Two separate issues here.

 

1) A non compete clause may be enforceable and the exact wording needs to be checked with a solicitor.

 

2) If he left invoices of customer details readily visible on the desk/ counter, si the first breach point not in fact your brother? I'd say he is on dodgy ground with that one.

Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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1) we are not worried about this, as stated  it wasn’t their customer in the first place, it more the reason they gave for  obtaining the data.

2) not sure you understood the first post, brother in law purchased items from plumbers merchants,  ex employer found out he had used the same plumber merchants as them and approached them , the plumbers merchants then gave the ex employer access to invoices between the plumbers merchants and bother in law (with the delivery address on for the third party on).

therefore the plumbers merchants disclosed his personal data to ex-employers without his consent. 

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Posted (edited)

So the first disclosure of data was BIL to the merchant. Does he have a data sharing agreement with every customer covering that?

 

I also cannot work out how this is related to the case other than non compete clauses. Feels like a potential red herring. Nothing to do with hours or pay change before he started working for himself - I would not waste my time.

Edited by Emmzzi

Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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Posted (edited)

It doesn’t have anything to do with the tribunal case. That’s why I’ve raised it as a separate discussion on data protection, and not in a thread about tribunal, it was merely mentioned as background to the data protection breach, and how he found out they had obtained his data

Edited by giblets46
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41 minutes ago, giblets46 said:

It doesn’t have anything to do with the tribunal case. That’s why I’ve raised it as a separate discussion on data protection, and not in a thread about tribunal, it was merely mentioned as background to the data protection breach, and how he found out they had obtained his data

 

I think the confusion may have arisen because you mentioned this on our Employment forum rather than the Data Protection one.

 

Where are you heading with this one please, so we can offer the appropriate help?

 

HB

Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, honeybee13 said:

 

I think the confusion may have arisen because you mentioned this on our Employment forum rather than the Data Protection one.

 


You are right, I am super confused as I’ve just double checked and it is clearly displayed (to me at least!) as in “Legal issues subforum> Data protection and default issues”

is there some kind of issue with the forum? 

 

either way I am asking about any action we can take against the ex-employer accessing personal information. 

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