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Privacy Notice

This Privacy Notice provides detailed information relating to the protection of your personal data

What is personal data?

Personal data is any piece of information that relates to an identified or identifiable individual.

How will we ensure the privacy of your personal data?

Elmbridge Borough Council is committed to protecting your privacy when you use our services. The purpose of this Privacy Notice is to advise what personal data we collect about you, including the reasons why we use and share such data, how long we keep it, what your rights are and how you can exercise them.

In this section, there is a list of services we provide. Under each service there is further information about who we may share your personal data with and why.

We have a Data Protection Officer who ensures that we respect your rights and follow the law. If you have any concerns or questions about how we look after your personal data please contact the Data Protection Officer, Alan Harrison, at dataprotection@elmbridge.gov.uk.

Why do we use your personal data?  

We collect and use your personal data to the extent necessary within the framework of our activities.

We may collect various types of personal data about you including:

  • Identification information (e.g. name, ID card and passport numbers, nationality, place and date of birth, gender, photograph)

  • Contact information (e.g. postal address and e mail address)

  • Family situation (e.g. marital status, number of children)

  • Education and employment information (e.g. level of education, employment status, employer’s name)

  • Banking, financial and transactional data (e.g. bank account details, credit card number)

  • Information related to your digital activities (e.g. IP address, browsing activity, location etc.)

  • Data relating to your habits, preferences:

    • Data which relates to your use of our services

    • Data from interactions with us, our internet websites, social media pages, meetings, calls, e mail, interview and phone conversations

    • Data concerning your hobbies and interests

We do not ask for personal data that is related to your religious or philosophical beliefs, ethnicity, physical or mental health, political opinion related to a trade union membership, genetic or biometric data, criminal history, sexual orientation, unless it is needed to discharge a legal obligation, or is required by law for statistical research purposes. In this event this data would be treated as Highly Confidential (Special Personal Data) and would not have an impact on your entitlement to council services.

The personal data we use about you may either be directly provided by you or obtained from other sources such as:

  • Websites or social media containing information made public by you;

  • Databases made available by official authorities;

  • Databases made publicly available by third parties.

In certain circumstances we collect and use the personal data of individuals with whom we have, could have, or used to have, a direct relationship. In addition, we may collect information about individuals who have not had a direct relationship with us. For example, this could have been obtained from:

  • Family members

  • Legal Representatives

  • Commercial partners

  • Personal contacts

How do we use your personal data?

We use your personal data in order to:

  • Deliver services and support to you:

  • Manage those services we provide to you;

  • Train and manage the employment of our workers who deliver those services;

  • Help investigate any worries or complaints you have about your services;

  • Keep track of spending on services;

  • Check the quality of services; and

  • To help with research and planning of new services.

On what legal basis do we collect and use your personal data?

Each privacy notice in this section provides greater detail, but in general, we collect and use your personal data where:

  • You, or your legal representative, have given consent

  • You have entered into a contract with us

  • It is necessary to perform our statutory duties

  • It is necessary to protect someone in an emergency

  • It is required by law

  • It is necessary for employment purposes

  • It is necessary to deliver health or social care services

  • You have made your information publicly available

  • It is necessary for legal cases

  • It is to the benefit of society as a whole

  • It is necessary to protect public health

  • It is necessary for archiving, research, or statistical purposes

If we have consent to use your personal information, you have the right to remove it at any time. If you want to remove your consent, please contact dataprotection@elmbridge.gov.uk and tell us which service you’re using so we can deal with your request.

Who do we share your personal data with?

Where we can, we will only collect and use personal information if we need it to deliver a service or meet a requirement.

If we use your personal information for research and analysis, we will ensure you remain anonymous or use a different name unless you’ve agreed that your personal information can be used for that research.
 
We do not sell your personal information to anyone else. 

We use a range of organisations to either store personal information or help deliver our services to you. Where we have these arrangements, there is always an agreement in place to make sure that the organisation complies with the data protection law.

Where required we will complete a Data Privacy Impact Assessment (DPIA) before we share personal information to make sure we protect your privacy and comply with the law.

Sometimes we have a legal duty to provide personal information to other organisations, service providers or partners. Your privacy and the security of sharing this information will always be checked before we share such information: Examples are:

  • Providers of goods and services

  • Local and Central Government, and other public bodies

  • Ombudsmen and Regulatory authorities

  • Health Bodies in the local area and sometimes nationally (NHS Trusts GPs)

  • Partners that are part of national or regional improvement projects

We may also share your personal information when we feel there’s a good reason that is more important than protecting your privacy. This doesn’t happen often, but we may share your information:

  • to find and stop crime and fraud; or

  • if there are serious risks to the public, our staff or to other professionals;

  • to protect a child; or

  • to protect adults who are thought to be at risk

The risk must be serious before we can override your right to privacy.

If we are worried about your physical safety or feel we need to act to protect you from being harmed in other ways, we’ll discuss this with you and, if possible, get your permission to tell others about your situation before doing so.
 
We may still share your information if we believe the risk to others is serious enough to do so. There may also be rare occasions when the risk to others is so great that we need to share information straightaway. If this is the case, we’ll make sure that we record what information we share and our reasons for doing so. We will keep you informed of what we have done and why if we it is safe to do so.

How do we protect your personal data?

We will make every effort to ensure that we hold records about you (on paper and electronically) in a secure way, and we will only make these records available to those who have a right to see them. Examples of our security include:
 

  • Encryption, meaning that information is hidden so that it cannot be read without special knowledge (such as a password). This is done with a secret code or what’s called a ‘cypher’. The hidden information is said to then be ‘encrypted’

  • Pseudonymisation, meaning that we’ll use a different name, so we can hide parts of your personal information from view. This means that someone outside of the Council could work on your information for us without ever knowing it was yours.

  • Controlling access to systems and networks allows us to stop people who are not allowed to view your personal information from getting access to it

  • Training for all of our staff in order to make them aware of how to handle information and how and when to report when something goes wrong

  • Regular testing of our technology and ways of working including keeping up to date with the latest security updates (commonly called patches)

How long do we keep your personal data?

We will maintain your personal data for at least the period to apply with applicable laws.

There is often a legal reason for keeping your personal data for a set period of time. Details will be included in our retention schedule.  This period can vary according to the type of data and its sensitivity.

Where do we hold your personal data and how is it transferred?

Most personal data is stored on systems in the UK. In the case where there is a need to transfer personal data within Europe, adequate protection is currently in place. For all other personal data transfers we will either ensure that robust contractual clauses are in place or seek advice from the Information Commissioners Office (ICO).

We will take all practical steps to make sure your personal information is not sent to a country that is not seen as ‘safe’ either by the UK or EU Governments.

What are your rights and how can you exercise them?

In accordance with the applicable regulations you have the following rights.

  • To access: you can obtain information relating to the processing of your personal data. We would normally expect to share any information we record about you whenever we assess your needs or provide you with a service. However, you also have the right to request such information. We cannot let you see confidential information that relates to other persons, that could cause potential harm to another party or that may prevent us detecting a crime.
     

  • To correct: where you consider that your personal data is inaccurate or incomplete you can require that such personal data be modified accordingly. We may not always be able to change or remove all information, but we will correct factual inaccuracies and may include your comments in the record to show that you disagree with it.
      

  • To erase:  you can request the deletion of your personal data, to the extent permitted by law. This would be in the case where your personal data is no longer needed, where you have removed your consent, or where deleting the information is legally required. Where your personal data has been shared with others, we will do what we can to ensure your request is complied with. Please note that we can’t delete your information where:

    • there is a legal requirement

    • it is in use and protected by freedom of expression

    • it is in use for public health purposes

    • it is for, scientific or historical research, or statistical purposes where it would make information unusable

    • it is necessary for legal claims
       

  • To restrict: you can request the restriction of the processing of your personal data. When information is restricted it can’t be used other than to securely store the data and with your consent to handle legal claims and protect others, or where it’s for important public interests of the UK. Where restriction of use has been granted, we will inform you before we carry on using your personal data. You have the right to ask us to stop using your personal data for any council service. However, if this request is approved, this may cause delays or prevent us delivering that service. Where possible we will seek to comply with your request, but we may need to hold or use information because we are required to by law.
     

  • To object: you can object to the processing of your personal data e.g. for direct marketing purposes.
     

  • To withdraw your consent: where you have given your consent for the processing of your personal data, you have the right to withdraw your consent at any time.
     

  • To provide data portability: where legally applicable you have the right to have the personal data you have provided returned to you or if feasible transferred to a third party. However, this only applies if we are using your personal data with consent (not if we’re required to by law) and if decisions were made by a computer and not a human being. It is likely that data portability won’t apply to most of the services you receive from Elmbridge Borough Council. You also have the right to object if you are being ‘profiled’. Profiling is where decisions are made about you based on certain criteria in your personal data, e.g. your health conditions.
     

  • If and when we use your personal data to profile you, in order to deliver the most appropriate service to you, you will be informed.
      

  • If you have concerns regarding automated decision making, or profiling, please contact the Data Protection Officer who’ll be able to advise you about how we are using your personal data. 

If you wish to exercise any of the rights above, please contact the Data Protection Officer Alan Harrison at dataprotection@elmbridge.gov.uk or complete the online form detailing any inaccuracies.

Where can you get advice?

If you have any worries or questions about how your personal data is handled, please contact our Data Protection Officer at mailto:dataprotection@elmbridge.gov.uk.

For independent advice about data protection, privacy and data sharing issues, you can contact the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) at:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire SK9 5AF

Tel: 0303 123 1113 (local rate) or 01625 545 745 if you prefer to use a national rate number.

Alternatively, visit ico.org.uk or email casework@ico.org.uk.

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