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Company stops ‘loose cannon’ revealing information about clients

Posted: 3rd April 2018   In: Individual Employment

A company has prevented an aggrieved employee described as a ‘loose cannon’ from revealing confidential information about some of its clients, including a foreign government and a royal family.

The High Court heard that the company provided operational and logistical support to members of the Dubai government and its royal family when they were in the UK.

This gave some employees access to clients' confidential information, so they had to sign an employment contract that prohibited them from disclosing any of that information, even after they had stopped working for the company.

One employee got involved in a dispute that led to him being dismissed. He was aggrieved and believed that he had been treated unfairly. He sent a message to the company's managing director threatening to disclose confidential information about company clients.

He said he would use the internet to publish photographs and recordings he had taken and said that he knew he would be breaching his contract, but he did not care.

The company sought an injunction to prevent him making any disclosures. The employee told the court that he had made the threat to encourage a settlement, that he did not possess any recordings or photographs and had no real intention to publish confidential information.

He said he had been angry and that he was concerned that if an injunction was granted he could be held responsible for other aggrieved employees anonymously disclosing confidential information on the internet.

The court ruled against him and granted the injunction. It held that there was a real risk that he would disclose the information if not restrained. He was a loose cannon, and while he might say that he had no intention to disclose, he was impulsive and angry, and the risk existed.

Please contact Robert Bedford if you would like more information about the issues raised in this article or any aspect of employment law and protecting your business.