Victims exposed in court hack ‘unlikely’ to be able to sue: legal expert 

Sex abuse victims and underworld informants whose testimonies could be leaked online after a hack of the Victorian court system are highly unlikely to be able to sue for damages.

Court Services Victoria confirmed this week that hackers had gained access to part of one of its systems that manages audiovisual recordings for all courts, including video recordings provided under witness protection and at trials protected by suppression orders.

Kim Price, the deputy managing principal of Victoria’s largest institutional abuse legal practice Arnold Thomas & Becker, said he was concerned about the potential breach of privacy of one of his clients and several witnesses.

“The attack is extremely concerning. We represent a large number of clients and witnesses, who have provided evidence on the condition of anonymity and will be very worried about this breach of privacy,” he said.

Price said compensation may apply in certain circumstances, such as if an individual had suffered loss or damage as a direct result of the breach of privacy.

“There is also a chance, given the scale of this breach, that it warrants a class action. The personal data of a significant number of people has been compromised.”

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