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Consumer Privacy and Data Breach Lawyers

NOTICE: If you received a NOTICE OF DATA BREACH letter from any company, contact the data breach attorneys at Console & Associates, at (866) 778-5500 to discuss your legal options, or submit a confidential Case Evaluation form here.

Data Breach Consumer Privacy Violation Letter

You just received a letter in the mail explaining that your personal information was compromised and accessed by an unauthorized third party in a recent data breach.

You may be wonderingwhich of your information was accessed? What can they do with this information? What can you do to protect yourself? What company allowed a third party to access your private information? Will your credit be impacted? Is there anything you can do to hold a company legally responsible for leaking your information?

These are all good questionsand important ones.

If you’ve recently learned that your personal and private information was compromised in a data breach, you must take the necessary steps to protect yourself. Hackers and other bad actors target email addresses, social media login information, credit card numbers, social security numbers and many other types of information.

The theft of personal information presents serious risks, most notably identity theft. In some cases, criminals may take out loans in your name or even provide your personal information to the police if they are arrested, meaning you could end up with a criminal record despite never having committed a crime.

“47 percent of people experienced identity theft in 2020.”
According to the Insurance Information Institute, 47 percent of people experienced identity theft in 2020. This represents a 73 percent increase from 2019. In large part, identity theft is increasing so rapidly due to the fact that more information is stored electronically. Companies that you trust with your information have a duty to protect it. When a company fails to implement the proper safeguards, it may be liable through a consumer data privacy lawsuit. At Console & Associates, P.C., our consumer privacy lawyers are here to help you understand your rights in the wake of a data breach. With our help, you can effectively pursue compensation from the parties responsible for the breach.

When you provide your information to a company, you trust that the company will protect your information. And, in most cases, businesses do a good job taking the necessary precautions to protect consumers’ private data. However, in recent years, data breaches have become incredibly common.

“there were more than 1,290 data breaches in the first half of 2021.”
Consumer privacy is not a new concern. However, the COVID-19 pandemic presented an opportunity for hackers and other criminals—an opportunity they eagerly seized.

With hundreds of thousands of people laid off, looking for work or other ways to make money, hackers knew that their victims were becoming increasingly desperate and took advantage. According to the Identity Theft Resource Center, there were more than 1,290 data breaches in the first half of 2021.[2] This represents the largest amount of data breaches in any six-month period in history.

Data breaches are a serious concern for several reasons. Aside from the uneasy feeling of knowing that your personal information is in the hands of a stranger, there are also financial and quality-of-life concerns when your information becomes compromised. Hackers will often sell your information to the highest bidder, who will then use the purchased information to engage in a host of potentially life-altering crimes.

At Console & Associates, P.C., we help consumers whose personal and private information was leaked by the corporations they trusted. While lawmakers understand the concerns surrounding data breaches, it often takes years for laws to pass. By holding companies accountable for the mishandling of consumers’ information, together we can encourage these companies to take consumer privacy more seriously.

To learn more, give us a call to discuss your situation. If you decide to bring a case with Console & Associates, P.C., you won’t pay for our legal representation unless we successfully recover compensation on your behalf. That’s part of the No Fee Promise we make to each one of our clients.

Call us today at (866) 778-5500.

Companies that you trust with your information have a duty to protect it.

What Is “Personal Information”?

data breach hacker accessing dataEvery time you make a purchase, apply for a loan, credit card, or bank account, or even open up a social media account, you provide your personal information. While the information you provide varies depending on the type of account or transaction, at a minimum, it will include your name and email address.

It is easy to lose track of all the information you’ve given to companies over time. The result is that a huge amount of information about you is available online and in company databases.

Some of the types of personal information companies retain include your:

  • Real name
  • Any aliases or common names you’ve used
  • Health information
  • Address
  • Internet Protocol Address
  • Email addresses
  • Account names
  • Social Security Number
  • Driver’s license number
  • Passport number
  • Credit card number
  • Bank account numbers

This information, either on its own or in conjunction with other personal information such as your gender, race or age, can be used by criminals for a variety of purposes, all of which put you at risk.

Should You Be Concerned About Data Privacy?

If a third party accesses your information, what’s the big deal? As long as you report fraud on your financial accounts, aren’t you protected? And don’t government agencies and credit agencies understand that identity theft is not your fault? The company that mishandled your data even offered to pay for enhanced credit monitoring services to provide you with additional protection, so why should you be worried about consumer privacy?

The fact is that a data breach can have a tremendous impact on your life. For example, below are just a few of the horrors that you may encounter in the wake of a data breach:

  • Unauthorized bank accounts
  • Unauthorized credit cards
  • Public availability of your private information
  • A criminal record

That’s right, criminals who steal another’s identity will often give someone else’s information to the police if they are pulled over or arrested. By doing so, they hope to take advantage of your lack of a criminal record. However, if the police still end up arresting them, it will be under your name.

The truth is, over time, there are mechanisms in place to reverse much of the damage caused by identity theft. However, it can take months or even years to uncover the full extent of the damage caused. And even once you discover the impact, it isn’t as easy as calling up a business and explaining you were the victim of a data breach. The result is that victims of a data breach are often consumed by reversing the effects of the breach. This is a burden you shouldn’t have to take on.

What Can Lead to a Data Breach?

People who capture black-market data have various tools at their disposal. For example, below are a few of the ways that criminals can obtain your information:

Hacking Attacks

Hacking is defined as obtaining unauthorized access to information through the use of a computer. Hackers can tap into an online database to access the personal information of anyone included in the database. Hackers possess advanced knowledge of computers, information technology, and security systems, which they use to breach databases.

Unsecure Online Security Systems

Hackers will often share information with one another. Thus, once an online security system is around long enough, hackers will invariably find a way around it. Companies understand this and must routinely update their online security systems to protect consumers’ data. However, this is costly and time-consuming, and not every company immediately conducts the necessary updates. The result is that many companies rely on outdated security systems, a reality that puts consumers at risk.


Malware is short for “malicious software.” Malware users will install the software over a network onto the victim’s device. From there, the program can wreak havoc, including scouring the device for any personal information.


Ransomware is a type of malware that typically blocks access to a person’s device unless they pay a ransom to the party controlling the program. Often, ransomware is delivered through the use of a “trojan,” which is a seemingly harmless file that installs the software when the user opens the program.

Decommissioning of I.T. Assets

When companies update their computers, network devices, and other information technology assets, the old assets, by default, will still contain sensitive information. Thus, companies must take special care when decommissioning old I.T. assets; otherwise, a bad actor could obtain the old assets and access the information contained on them.

Unauthorized Sale of Personal Information

While federal regulation of consumer privacy is still quite weak, many states have passed laws requiring companies to inform consumers about how their information will be handled. In many cases, large and trusted businesses generate huge profits from selling customers’ data to third parties. The third party can then do what they wish with the information obtained.

These are just a few of the most common causes of data breaches; there are many others. At Console & Associates, P.C., our respected data breach and consumer privacy lawyers stay on top of all recent scams and attacks to ensure our clients’ interests are protected.

When Is a Company Responsible for a Data Breach?

If a hacker or other criminal targets a company and a customer’s information is compromised, the company can be held liable in certain situations. However, companies are not generally strictly liable for a data breach. This means that to successfully bring a data breach lawsuit, you must prove that the company that owned or possessed your data acted negligently. A few of the ways in which a company can be held liable for a data breach include:

  • If the company failed to maintain a security system as required by state law
  • If the company was directly responsible for the leak
  • If the company failed to effectively mitigate the harms of a data breach once it was discovered
  • If the company failed to provide timely notice to all consumers impacted by the breach

Thus, even though a company may technically be a “victim” of a data breach, so is the consumer. And, ultimately, companies have a duty to protect against third-party attacks, so they can be held accountable for the incident when they fail to adequately protect consumer data.

How to Protect Against a Data Breach

If you recently received a letter from a company you trusted indicating that your information was targeted in a data breach, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you will become a victim; however, it does mean that you’ve been put at risk. You may be wondering what you should do if you receive a data breach notification. Below are a few important steps you can take to protect yourself.

    1. Read the Notice – Don’t Ignore It!: The first thing to do after receiving a data breach notification is to read the entire notice carefully. Too often, people ignore data breach notifications, thinking that no harm has been done. That is not the case, as any leaked information puts you at risk. The notice will tell you specifically which type of information was compromised and how you may have been exposed. It is also imperative that you keep a copy of the letter in the event you need to prove that you’ve been the victim of identity theft.
    2. Review the Breached Account: Next, hop online and review your account with the company that reported the breach. Try to remember what information you provided to the company. This will give you a better idea of exactly what is at stake.
    3. Consider Closing the Affected Account: While receiving a notice that you’ve been the target of a data breach doesn’t necessarily mean you will become a victim, depending on the type of account and information accessed, you should consider closing your account and reopening a new one. While the third party will still retain access to your information, by closing the account, the information will no longer be linked to that specific account.
    4. Understand the Risks: Depending on the type of data breach, there are various risks you may face. For example, if someone was able to access your credit card information, the obvious risk is that a third party will start using your card for purchases. While this is a hassle and can subject you to the risk of identity theft, the real risks stem from compromised social security numbers, birth dates, addresses and other personal information. Because you can’t change this information, it has a long shelf-life for criminals.
    5. Sign Up for Free Credit Monitoring: Often, a company will provide a free period of enhanced credit monitoring in the wake of a data breach. However, you will not be automatically signed up for this free service; you need to affirmatively sign up, and it is important that you do so. Taking the company up on their offer does not impact your rights to pursue a data breach lawsuit in the future.
    6. Keep a Close Eye on Your Credit Report: Aside from constantly monitoring the affected account, you should also frequently check your credit report to look for other signs of fraud. Even if the information accessed in the most recent data breach doesn’t give a criminal everything they need to assume your identity, there is no telling what other information is already out there.
    7. Change Passwords and Login Credentials: After falling victim to a data breach, it is essential that you change all passwords and security questions to any financial account. This is an important step even if the compromised account was not linked to your bank account.
    8. Contact a Consumer Privacy and Data Breach Lawyer: Regardless of whether you notice signs of fraudulent activity on any of your accounts, you may be entitled to compensation from the company that mishandled your data. However, these cases are extremely complex and should be handled by an attorney with specific, hands-on experience dealing with these particular claims.

At Console & Associates, P.C., our lawyers monitor all data breaches and help affected consumers pursue their legal remedies. We offer free consultations to all victims of data breaches and can explain your rights in clear, understandable terms so you can make an informed decision about how to proceed with your case.

Reach Out to the Data Privacy Lawyers at Console & Associates, P.C.

No Fee PromiseIf you recently received a letter indicating that your information was compromised through a data breach, it is crucial that you take the steps necessary to protect yourself. At Console & Associates, P.C., we help you better understand what is at stake after a data breach and what your legal remedies are. We work with law firms across the country to provide the most resources and expertise possible to help ensure that your case is successful.

At Console & Associates, P.C., we also offer all clients a No Fee Promise, which means that we do not accept payment from you unless we can successfully resolve your case, either through a data breach settlement or a favorable jury verdict.

To schedule your free consultation, just call (866) 778-5500 today or fill out our secure contact form.

NOTICE: If you received a NOTICE OF DATA BREACH letter from any company, contact the data breach attorneys at Console & Associates, at (866) 778-5500 to discuss your legal options, or submit a confidential Case Evaluation form here.


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