Various Claimants v Wm Morrisons Supermarket plc

Vicarious liability – Employer and employee. The employer, supermarket chain, Morrisons, was held to be vicariously liable for the criminal actions of a rogue employee in disclosing personal information of co-employees on the internet. The Queen's Bench Division held that there had been sufficient connection between the position in which the rogue employee had been employed and his wrongful conduct to make it right for Morrisons to be held liable under the principle of social justice. That conclusion would be the same irrespective of whether a breach of duty under the Data Protection Act 1998, a misuse of private information, or a breach of the duty of confidence was concerned, for the essential actions constituting a legal wrong in each case had been the same.

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