Sep 232011
 
 September 23, 2011  Breaches, Featured News, Non-U.S.

Yes, this is the third celebrity-related privacy news story I’m posting this morning, which may be some kind of record for a site that generally avoids celebrity news unless it raises important privacy questions. But read on, as I think this one does…

Phone-hacking victim Sienna Miller accused her mother of leaking stories to the News of the World because she could not understand how journalists were obtaining information.

The actress, 29, believed a succession of articles about her private life which appeared in the Sunday tabloid must have been leaked by a close friend or member of her family.

She was left so paranoid by intimately private stories published between 2005 and 2006 that she accused her mother Josephine, sister and former boyfriend Jude Law of selling them to the press.

Read more of her response to phone hacking on The Telegraph.

Then think about this in terms of  privacy harm – the destruction or erosion of trust in important human relationships due to a privacy breach.  Is there any doubt  the NOTW phone hacking resulted in terrible harm to Ms. Miller?

No, NOTW didn’t force her to distrust her family and friends or to become paranoid about them, but their actions were responsible. And when you think about this breach in terms of this type of privacy harm, the £100,000 settlement seems way too low.

The hacking of a dead girl’s phone shocked the world, and understandably so.  But Sienna Miller’s story should be a wake-up call for everyone on the serious harm breaches can cause.  When your privacy has been breached and you don’t know who’s responsible, you may not know whom you can trust.   And in life, that’s huge.

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