The Council’s Privacy Notices are continually updated.
The Council’s commitment to you:
When the Council asks you for information we will:
- ensure you know why we need it and ask for only what is needed
- protect your personal information and ensure nobody can access it who should not be able to
- take proportionate steps to prevent the loss, misuse or alteration of your personal information
- inform you if we share it with any other organisations unless the law allows us to share it without consent
- ensure we do not keep your personal information longer than is necessary
We have a Data Protection Officer who ensures we respect your rights and follow the law. If you have any concerns or questions about how we look after your personal information, please contact the Data Protection Officer at DPO@fermanaghomagh.com or by calling 0300 303 1777 and asking to speak to the Data Protection Officer.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is personal data?
Personal data is information which identifies and relates to a living person. This can include information that when put together with other information can then identify a person. For example, this could include your:
- phone number
- date of birth
- bank details
- email address
Did you know that some of your personal information might be ‘sensitive” or “special category” data?
Some information needs more protection due to its sensitivity. It is often information you would not want widely known and is very personal to you. This is likely to include anything that can reveal your:
- ethnic origin;
- political view;
- trade union membership;
- biometrics (where used for ID purposes);
- sex life; or
- sexual orientation.
Why do we need your personal information?
We may need to use some information about you 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 service
- check the quality of services; and
- to help with research and planning of new services.
How does the law allow us to use your personal information?
There are a number of legal reasons why we need to collect and use your personal information.
Each privacy notice from the menu on the left explains for each service which legal reason is being used. Generally we collect and use personal information 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.
How much information will we collect?
Where possible, we will only collect and use personal information if we need it to deliver a service or meet a requirement.If we do not need personal information we’ll either keep you anonymous if we already have it for something else or we won’t ask you for it. For example in a survey if we do not need your contact details we will only collect your survey responses.
If we use your personal information for research and analysis, we will always keep you 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.
What rights do you have to control the personal information which we hold and which identifies you?
The law gives you a number of rights to control what personal information is used by us and how it is used by us.
You can ask for access to the information we hold on you
We would normally expect to share what we record about you with you whenever we assess your needs or provide you with services.
However, you also have the right to ask for all the information we have about you. When we receive a request from you in writing, we must give you access to everything we’ve recorded about you.
However, we cannot let you see any parts of your record which contain:
- Confidential information about other people; or
- If we think that giving you the information may stop us from preventing or detecting a crime
This applies to personal information that is in both paper and electronic records. If you ask us, we will also let others see your record (except if one of the points above applies).
You can ask to change information you think is inaccurate
You should let us know if you disagree with something written about you.
We may not always be able to change or remove that information but we will correct factual inaccuracies and may include your comments in the record to show that you disagree with it.
You can ask to delete information (right to be forgotten)
In some circumstances you can ask for your personal information to be deleted, for example:
- Where your personal information is no longer needed for the reason why it was collected in the first place
- Where you have removed your consent for us to use your information (where there is no other legal reason us to use it)
- Where there is no legal reason for the use of your information
- Where deleting the information is a legal requirement
Where your personal information has been shared with others, we will do what we can to ensure those using your personal information comply with your request for erasure.
Please note that we cannot delete your information where:
- we are required to have it by law
- it is used 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
You can ask to limit what we use your personal data for
You have the right to ask us to restrict what we use your personal information for where:
- you have identified inaccurate information, and have told us about it
- where we have no legal reason to use that information but you want us to restrict what we use it for rather than erase the information altogether.
When information is restricted it cannot be used other than to securely store the data and with your consent to handle legal claims and protect others.
Where restriction of use has been granted, we willl inform you before we carry on using your personal information.
You have the right to ask us to stop using your personal information 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.
You can ask to have your information moved to another provider (data portability)
You have the right to ask for your personal information to be given back to you or another service provider of your choice in a commonly used format. This is called data portability.
However, this only applies if we are using your personal information with consent (not if we’re required to by law) and if decisions were made by a computer and not a human being.
You also have the right to object if you are being ‘profiled’. Profiling is where decisions are made about you based on certain things in your personal information, e.g. your preferences when you go to the theatre.
If and when the Council uses your personal information to profile you, in order to deliver the most appropriate service to you, you will be informed.
If you have concerns regarding profiling, please contact the Data Protection Officer who will be able to advise you about how we use your information.
Who do we share your information with?
Within the Council we may share your data between services so that:
- our information about you is kept up to date
- we can provide a service to you
- we can improve our services to you.
Staff will only see your data if it is appropriate and necessary for them to do their jobs. Internal Audit staff can access information, as required, to undertake a statutory function in compliance with The Local Government (Accounts and Audit) Regulations Northern Ireland 2015, to review compliance with Council policy and procedures and to comply with applicable laws and regulations.
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 ensure that the organisation complies with data protection law.
We will often complete a privacy impact assessment (PIA) before we share personal information to ensure we protect your privacy and comply with the law.
Sometimes we have a legal duty to provide personal information to other organisations, eg external auditors during external audit inspections. Another example is that we may need to give that data to courts, including:
- if the court orders that we provide the information; and
- if we are working with partners to provide you with a service to meet your needs.
We may also share your personal information when we feel there is a good reason that’s more important than protecting your privacy. This doesn’t happen often, but we may share your information:
- in order to find and stop crime and fraud; or if there are serious risks to the public or our staff,
- to protect a child, or
- to protect adults who are thought to be at risk, for example if they are frail, confused or cannot understand what is happening to them.
For all of these reasons 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 take action 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.
If this is the case, we’ll ensure that we record what information we share and our reasons for doing so. We’ll let you know what we’ve done and why if we think it is safe to do so.
What is Data Matching?
How do we protect your information?
We will do what we can to ensure we hold records about you (on paper and electronically) in a secure way, and we will only make them 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 our staff makes 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 on the latest security updates (commonly called patches).
Where is your information stored?
The majority of personal information is stored on systems in the UK. There are some occasions where your information may leave the UK either in order to get to another organisation or if it is stored in a system outside of the EU. We have additional protections on your information if it leaves the UK ranging from secure ways of transferring data to ensuring we have a robust contract in place with that third party.
We will take all practical steps to ensure your personal information is not sent to a country that is not seen as ‘safe’ either by the UK or EU Governments.
If we need to send your information to an ‘unsafe’ location we will always seek advice from the Information Commissioner first.
How long do we keep your personal information?
What do we need you to do?
When you provide us with personal information, please:
- provide us with accurate information
- inform us as soon as possible if there are any changes to your personal information
- tell us if you notice mistakes or inaccuracies in the information we have about you.
This will ensure that your personal data is reliable and kept up to date.
Where can I get advice?
If you have any worries or questions about how your personal information is handled please contact our Data Protection Officer at DPO@fermanaghomagh.com or by calling 0300 303 1777. 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
14 Cromac Place
Tel: 0303 123 1114
Alternatively, visit ico.org.uk.