LawyerLocate.ca member, Bob Buckingham, recently initiated a class action lawsuit against the Canadian government after the personal information of 538,000 Canadians was lost. The information was stored on a portable hard drive and it related to individuals who took out student loans between the years 2000 and 2007. The Human Resources and Skills Development Canada announced the privacy breach to the public on February 8th, 2013 with an update on February 19th, 2013.
You might be wondering what type of information goes missing in these sorts of mishaps. This privacy breach included names, birth dates, Social Insurance Numbers, student loan balances and addresses. If this information got into the wrong hands, criminals could apply for credit cards or passports. This could cause a lot of headaches for Canadians across the country. According to the HRSDC, there is no evidence that the data has been stolen by fraudsters; however, Mr. Buckingham is concerned how this information might be used should it get into the wrong hands. Because the privacy breach was avoidable, Mr. Buckingham believes he has a very strong case against the government.
Bob Buckingham filed the class action lawsuit on January 17, 2013. This is a privacy and security issue affecting half a million Canadians. The information lost is exactly what identity thieves look for; your social insurance number is your identifier as a Canadian citizen. It’s vital that the government step up here, that they help those affected to deal with the financial and emotion costs of this situation,” he said in a statement to LawyerLocate.ca on January 23, 2013. He goes on to say, “We’ve had more than 275,000 hits to our website in the last week or so and our Facebook group, which had less than 500 friends a week ago, now has more than 6,000 friends. We’re swamped with phone calls and emails, and to date about 16,000 people have filled out the Class Action form on our website.”
Bob Buckingham maintains an active practice in criminal law, family law, wills and estates, civil litigation and corporate/commercial work. He is well known for his extensive experience representing the victims of sexual abuse, particularly the victims of the Canadian Branch of the Christian Brothers of Ireland, the United Church of Canada and Dr. Stephen John Collins.
If you’ve been affected by the Canada Student Loans Privacy Breach, visit http://studentloansclassaction.com/ to register as a class action participant.
Natalie brings a passion to the business that ensures the entire LawyerLocate.ca team strives to improve the service for both lawyers and the general public. To that end, she is committed to ongoing communication with our members and welcomes and relies on clients’ input to continually evolve the service to make it better for all.