Ryan Gracey responds to highly sophisticated cyber attack on easyJet

Tuesday 19th May 2020

Ryan Gracey, solicitor at Gordons and expert in technology law, has been quoted across national media including the Telegraph, Independent, Express and Mirror following a ‘highly sophisticated” cyber attack on easyJet.

The airline said that that email addresses and travel details of approximately nine million customers have been accessed by a third party company. Credit card details for around 2,208 people have also been accessed.

Responding to the news, Ryan Gracey said:

“This is a significant cyber attack which once again highlights the importance of stringent IT security measures for businesses.

“The General Data Protection Regulation makes it clear that organisations must be accountable for the personal data they hold. This includes ensuring proper technical and organisational measures are in place to protect personal data against unauthorised or unlawful access and disclosure.

“Aside from reputational damage, EU regulators have the power to issue significant fines for those firms who have their data breached.

“Ultimately any potential fine will be at the discretion of the Information Commissioner’s Office and turn on the specific facts but they have previously shown willingness to take robust action and have the power to levy fines of up to 4% of a company’s global turnover.

“In 2019 the ICO announced its intention to fine British Airways £183.4 million, representing 1.5% of their 2017 global turnover, after hackers stole personal and financial details of up to 500,000 customers from its website. In assessing whether a fine will be appropriate for easyJet, the ICO will look at the number of individuals affected, the duration of the breach, the nature of the data involved and the time taken to report and remedy the breach.

“For now it appears easyJet are doing all the right things in informing the ICO and reaching out to customers. It is also the company’s first significant data breach. However from what we know at this stage, a significant fine seems highly likely.”

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