Privacy and Reputation Issues: Hamlins’ partner Chris Hutchings gives an update on how to protect your reputation

In today’s world, websites and social media instantly relay rumours to millions and it’s vital to guard your reputation.

Hamlins’ partner Chris Hutchings gives an update on how to protect individual and corporate reputations from false allegations.


“In a world of 24/7 news and media, your reputation and privacy are valuable, personal rights which can be harmed or even destroyed very rapidly, particularly because of the speed with which information can now travel across the internet.

It’s far better to act swiftly to prevent harm to your reputation, than to have to seek to rectify after the damage has been done, and to cure the harm already there.

Reputation and privacy issues can of course arise at any point, but more often than not, in all of my experience, it’s usually in the run up to the weekend. Journalists will frequently call up on a Thursday or a Friday, with a view to publication on a Sunday, and our strategy is to slow the whole process down, to buy time to make proper comment, and seek to deter them from publishing. In addition, allegations can appear anytime on social media, such as Facebook, Twitter or blogs. Its essential that we have a strategy and a team in place, to monitor and take the appropriate action.

At a time when your reputation and privacy are threatened across any channel, what do you need to do?

First, you need to act rapidly, and our team of experts at Hamlins are here to help you and advise you 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Along with our own expertise, Hamlins have in place long standing working relationships with PR advisers, Communication experts and specialist Barristers. As well as slowing the process down, the primary strategy is to curtail or deter publication across the media, or remove unacceptable online content. Going to court will only be a secondary action, but the threat of doing so will often deter publication.

A key part of the strategy is to construct a succinct form of wording, by way of right of reply, that can frequently take away the whole sting of the allegations. With online content, we can put the operators of websites on notice, and if they refuse to remove content, they will lose a powerful defense and potentially be held responsible.

Reputation and privacy are your valuable, personal rights and Hamlins team of experts can help you protect them.”

If you would like further information on privacy and reputation, please contact Chris Hutchings on 020 7355 6000.