This document explains how we are complying with the requirements of the Data Protection Act 1998. It also tells you how you can obtain details of personal information we hold about you.
We have tried to make the document as clear as possible but, if there is anything you do not understand or would like a fuller explanation of, please call or write to your local council's Data Protection Officer. If they cannot immediately answer any query you have about the Act and your rights under it, then they will attempt to find an answer for you as quickly as possible.
The Data Protection Act 1998 is designed to protect personal data about living individuals ('Data Subjects'). This means that any person or organisation who handles personal data must comply with the requirements of the Act. Such a person or organisation is called a 'Data Controller'. The councils in the dorsetforyou.com partnership have data controllers and are committed to the principles governing this legislation.
What is personal data?
Personal data is information about a living individual from which that person can be identified. That information can be in a variety of formats. For example it might be on computer, in a paper filing system or in more unusual formats such as CCTV footage.
Why does dorsetforyou.com collect data about people?
We need to collect personal data to fulfil our functions in relation to the provision of Social , Education, Environmental Services (planning, highways, etc.) and other functions such as benefits and licensing.
What principles apply to the collection of personal data?
There are eight governing principles that must be followed in relation to the processing of data about individuals.
- Data must be processed fairly and lawfully
- Data must be collected and processed for only one or more specified purposes. In other words, we must not collect data for one reason and then use it for something else
- Data we hold must be adequate for its purpose or purposes but not excessive or irrelevant
- Data must be accurate and, where necessary, kept up-to-date
- We must not keep data for longer than necessary
- We must process data in accordance with the rights of the data subject under the Act
- Data must be kept securely and we must guard against its accidental loss
- We must not transfer personal data outside the European Economic Area unless the Country receiving it has an adequate level of protection for the rights and freedoms of data subjects
Can I find out what data dorsetforyou.com holds about me?
As a Data Subject you have the right:
- To be told whether we are processing information about you
- To be provided with a description of the data, why we are processing it and the sorts of people or organisations we might disclose the information to
- To be provided with a copy of the data in an intelligible and permanent form
- To be told, if we know, where the information was obtained from
How do I obtain information about me?
You must make a Subject Access Request. A link to the form is provided on this page, but you do not have to use it. However, if you do use the form, it will help us to help you. Please note that, whether you use the form or not, a request for access to personal data must be in writing.
Can I use email to make a request?
Ordinarily, email requests will not be acceptable because the request must contain an original, verifiable signature.
Is there a fee to make a Subject Access Request?
Current legislation allows us to charge a maximum of £10.
How long will a Subject Access Request take?
We will endeavour to provide you with the requested information as soon as possible and no later than 40 calendar days from receipt of a valid request.
How do we know that we are giving information to the right person?
When making a Subject Access Request you will be asked to provide some means of identification. This is to safeguard all Data Subjects by making sure that we only supply information to those who are entitled to receive it. Acceptable forms of identification are a birth certificate or driving license or a photocopy of either. Original documents, if provided, will be returned to you as soon as possible.
Can I always obtain information about myself?
Not always. The Act has a number of exemptions. If you make a Subject Access Request and we consider that the information concerned is exempt from any provision of the Act then we will explain why. If you disagree with our view, you can ask us to reconsider or you can take the matter up with the Information Commissioner who oversees compliance with this legislation. His details are given at the end of this page.
If I am unable to make a Subject Access Request myself can I ask somebody to do it for me?
Yes - but you will need to give them authority to do so. (See the Subject Access Request form for further information.) If there is no-one who can help you then let the Data Protection Officer know and he will make arrangements for somebody to assist you if necessary.
What can I do if I think that information you hold about me is incorrect?
Write to the Data Protection Officer explaining what you think is wrong and ask for the data to be corrected. We must tell you what we have done or intend to do within 21 days. If you do not agree with our decision, you can ask us to record that disagreement for future reference - or you can take the matter up with the Information Commissioner.
Can I claim any compensation if I think that information about me has been wrongly used?
If we have broken any of the rules or conditions established by the Act and you have suffered damage or distress as a result of this, then you may be able to claim compensation through the Courts. Any such claim will need to show that we had not taken reasonable care to comply with the Act.
To get in touch about data protection contact us.