Privacy Notice for Cheshire East Council
Cheshire East Council (CEC) is committed to protecting the personal information we hold of people who use our services.
We comply with all laws concerning the protection of personal information, including the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). We have security measures in place to reduce the risk of theft, loss, destruction, misuse or inappropriate disclosure of personal information. All our systems have unique login details and access is only given to the staff who need it.
If you have any concerns about your personal information held by us e.g. someone else knows your password, or you have been given access to someone else’s information get in touch with us straight away.
This statement of privacy applies to CEC’s use of any personal information we collect or create about you. This includes information:
- we collect from visitors to our website and users of our web applications
- given to us by phone, social media, such as Facebook and Twitter, email, in letters, in forms and other correspondence
- given in person
This privacy notice includes the following:
Contact details of the Data Controller and the Data Protection Officer
Cheshire East Council
c/o Municipal Buildings, Earle Street, Crewe, Cheshire CW1 2BJ
Data Protection Officer
Call 01270 686606
1st Floor, Westfields
c/o Municipal Buildings, Earle Street, Crewe, Cheshire CW1 2BJ
What information we may collect about you and where it comes from
CEC collects personally identifiable information whenever you access or sign up to any of our services, request information, make a complaint or participate in activities provided by us. This information may include your name, email address, home or work address, telephone or mobile number, date of birth or bank account details. We also collect anonymous demographic information, which is not unique to you, such as postcode, age, gender, preferences, interests and favourites.
Sometimes we will require you to provide additional personal information, and sensitive personal information. For example, if you are applying for a Blue Badge we may need details of your disability, or if you are receiving support from health and social care, we will need to record details of your physical or mental health condition and your care needs. When we do this we will provide further information at the time about why we are collecting your information and how we will use it.
There is also information about your computer hardware and software that is automatically collected by CEC . This information can include unique identifiers such as your IP address, which is a number that can uniquely identify a specific computer or other network device on the internet, browser type, domain names, access times and referring website addresses. We use this information for the operation of the service, to maintain quality of the service, and to provide general statistics regarding use of the cheshireeast.gov.uk website.
We process personal information about the following people:
- people contracted to provide a service
- complainants, enquirers or their representatives
- professional advisers and consultants
- students and pupils
- carers or representatives
- recipients of benefits
- offenders and suspected offenders
- license and permit holders
- traders and others subject to inspection
- people captured by CCTV images
- representatives of other organisations
- elected members
The information comes from a variety of sources but in most cases the information comes from you. Sometimes other people provide personal information by making a complaint or submitting information on behalf of someone else; and sometimes agencies such as the Department for Work and Pensions or other local authorities provide CEC with personal information. Our information asset register details the source of the specific information we hold.
How we use the information we collect about you
We process personal information to enable us to provide a range of government services to local people and businesses which include:
- maintaining our own accounts and records
- supporting and managing our employees
- promoting the services we provide
- marketing our local tourism
- carrying out health and public awareness campaigns
- managing our property
- providing leisure and cultural services
- provision of education
- carrying out surveys
- administering the assessment and collection of taxes and other revenue including benefits and grants
- licensing and regulatory activities
- local fraud initiatives
- the provision of social services for all ages
- fostering and adoption
- crime prevention and prosecution of offenders including the use of CCTV
- corporate administration and all activities we are required to carry out as a data controller and public authority
- undertaking research
- the provision of all commercial services including the administration and enforcement of parking regulations and restrictions
- the provision of all non-commercial activities including refuse collections from residential properties
- internal financial support and corporate functions
- managing archived records for historical and research reasons
- data matching under local and national fraud initiatives
- administration of welfare and other benefits
- debt collection including council tax, non-domestic rates and other sundry debts
- management of children and young people subject to an offending prevention programme
- protection of public health
- planning including applications and decisions, building control, local plans and conservation
- administration and maintenance of highways
Why we can process your personal information
Our information asset register details the legal basis for processing personal data for each function of the council. However, the majority of our functions are governed by local government legislation and the main reasons are:
- the processing is necessary for compliance with that legislation which CEC has to do (for example collection of Council Tax); and
- the processing is necessary for us to carry out our official public function (for example waste management and care and support for adults and children).
We will ask you for your permission to process your personal information if it is not covered by a public task or legal duty. This might be when we want to use your information in a way which is unexpected or different to the original purpose where there is no legal basis. If we rely on your consent to process your personal information, you have the right to withdraw that consent at any time. If you wish to withdraw your consent, please contact the service that asked for your consent in the first instance.
We will need the parental consent of children under the age of 13 if we offer services directly to children over the internet. We will make reasonable efforts to verify age and parental responsibility.
When we may use your details to contact you
Cheshire East Council may contact you in a variety of circumstances, for instance:
- in relation to any service, activity or online content you have requested or signed up for to make sure that we can deliver the services to you, e.g. to verify your email when you sign up to an online account, to help you reset your password or to check if you still want to use the service (if your account has not been active recently)
- in response to any correspondence we receive from you or any comment or complaint you make
- in relation to any personalised services you are receiving, such as social care
- in relation to any contribution you have submitted to CEC via social media
- to invite you to participate in surveys about CEC services
Detailed information about how CEC will contact you in relation to specific services, activities or online content will be provided on the relevant service webpage.
Contacting you for marketing purposes
CEC will only send you marketing emails where you have agreed to this.
Who we share your information with
Where required by law or to carry out a public task under the official authority of the council, like those listed in the section 'how we use your information', we will share your personal information with:
- family, associates or representatives of the person whose personal data we are processing
- current past and prospective employers
- healthcare, social and welfare organisations
- educators and examining bodies
- providers of goods and services
- financial organisations
- debt collection and tracing agencies
- private investigators
- service providers
- local and central government
- ombudsman and regulatory authorities
- press and the media
- professional advisers and consultants
- courts and tribunals
- trade unions
- political organisations
- professional advisers
- credit reference agencies
- professional bodies
- survey and research organisations
- police forces
- housing associations and landlords
- voluntary and charitable organisations
- religious organisations
- students and pupils including their relatives, guardians, carers or representatives
- data processors
- other police forces, non-home office police forces
- regulatory bodies
- courts, prisons
- customs and excise
- international law enforcement agencies and bodies
- security companies
- partner agencies, approved organisations and individuals working with the police
- licensing authorities
- healthcare professionals
- law enforcement and prosecuting authorities
- legal representatives, defence solicitors
- police complaints authority
- the disclosure and barring service (DBS)
Transfers to third countries and safeguards
We do not usually transfer personal information overseas. Any contracts with providers who might host personal information outside the European Union have appropriate clauses to ensure adequate technical and organisational security measures are in place by the provider.
How we use information about children
We use personal information about children and young people in our care or those children who we provide services to. We use this information to
- process applications for school places
- support children and young people and monitor their progress
- provide appropriate support and pastoral care
- assess how well the local authority as a whole is doing
This information includes personal characteristics and details of the services we provide. Information relating to children with a child protection plan, unborn children with a pre-birth protection plan and looked after children will be shared with the National Health Service (NHS). This is to ensure that health professionals have access to information that can help them assess whether a child is at risk.
We offer Youth Support Services for young people aged 13–19 years (25 with a learning difficulty) and we obtain name, address and date of birth of pupils and the name(s) and address(es) of their parents from schools. Schools are legally required to pass this information to the provider of Youth Support Services in their area.
We holds information about children’s education and training. This is to support the provision of their education up to the age of 20 (25 for those with a special education need or disability). Schools, colleges and public bodies such as the Department for Education (DfE), police, probation and health services, may pass information to us to help us to do this.
We share some of the information we collect with the DfE to enable them to produce statistics, assess our performance, determine the destinations of young people after they have left school or college and to evaluate government funded programmes. We may also share information with post-16 education and training providers to secure appropriate support for them.
For children under 16, a parent or guardian can ask that no information, other than their child’s name, address and date of birth (or their own name and address), be passed to a local authority. This right transfers to the child on their 16th birthday. Pupils and/or a parent/guardian will need to inform the school if this is what they wish.
See our Live Well Cheshire East web pages for further details.
How long we keep your personal information
We do not keep personal information any longer than necessary. We keep your information for a variety of different periods depending on the nature of the record but it is in line with our retention schedule based on retention guidelines for local authorities. You can see details of our retention guidelines on our information asset register.
Your rights in relation to your personal information, including how to make a complaint
You have a number of information rights under the GDPR which give you more control over your personal data. These rights include:
Right of access
You can make a request to see the information we hold about you by submitting a subject access request. Further details and an online form can be found on our data protection page.
Right to rectification
If your details change, or you believe we are processing inaccurate information about you, you can ask us to change it. Factual inaccuracies will be amended promptly but there may be instances where we are unable to change a record, such as where there is a difference of opinion on a comment made during a meeting. However, in such cases a note will be placed on record to make sure your views are recorded. If you wish to amend inaccurate information, please contact the relevant service in the first instance.
Right to restrict processing
You have the right to restrict the processing of your personal data if you are in dispute with us over its accuracy while it is being verified. You can also restrict our use of your personal information if the processing is unlawful. If we no longer need your personal information for the purpose it was held, you can ask us to keep records if they are required to establish, exercise or defend legal claims. If you wish to restrict the processing of your information, please contact the relevant service in the first instance.
Right to object
You can object to specific types of data processing, including direct marketing and automated decision making. When we intend to process your personal data for such purposes, you will be given the opportunity to object when we contact you about it.
Right to data portability
You have the right to receive personal information, which you have provided to us by electronic means, in a reusable format. This means that where you have submitted information to us online or through an automated process, you can have a copy of that information returned to you in an electronic format to enable you to transfer the information to another organisation. Further details about your right to data portability are on our data protection page.
Right to erasure (right to be forgotten)
If you withdraw consent or there is no lawful basis to process your personal information, you can request that any data we hold on you is erased. If there is no lawful basis for us to process your personal information we will take reasonable steps to delete it as soon as possible. Further details about your right to be forgotten are on our data protection page.
Right to complain
Cheshire East Council tries to meet the highest standards when collecting and using personal information and we take any complaints about data protection very seriously. We would encourage you to bring concerns to our attention in the first instance to see if we can put things right. If, following our response, you are still unhappy with the way we have processed your information and think it has been handled inappropriately or we have not responded to your request to exercise any of your rights in relation to your information, you have the right to complain directly to the Information Commissioner’s Office.
You can raise your initial concerns with the Data Protection Officer at email@example.com
If you want to take the matter further, you can contact the Information Commissioner’s Office via https://ico.org.uk/concerns or call 0303 123 1113.
Your online account
If you are the person or business that pays Council Tax or Business Rates, or you are a benefits customer, you can view your accounts, bills and notification letters online. Landlords can access information about housing benefit payments made to them by their tenants.
We will never contact you to ask for your CEC account password or other login information. Please exercise caution if you receive any emails or calls from people asking for this information and claiming to be from CEC.
See our account web page for further details.
Offensive or inappropriate content on our website
If you post or send offensive, inappropriate or objectionable content on or to our websites or social media or otherwise engage in any disruptive behaviour on any CEC premises, we will use your personal information to stop such behaviour.
Where we reasonably believe that you are or may be in breach of any applicable laws, such as the Malicious Communications Act 1988, because content you have posted may be defamatory, we may use your personal information to inform relevant third parties such as your employer, school, email/internet provider or law enforcement agencies about the content and your behaviour.
National Fraud Initiative
We take part in the National Fraud Initiative as required by law to protect public funds. This is a data matching exercise to prevent and detect overpayments, errors and fraud. Our National Fraud Initiative page explains how this affects your personal information.
Security of Personal Data
We take our responsibilities to protect all the personal data we hold very seriously. We comply with all relevant legislation and our internal policies provide for measures to keep your information safe.
These measures include:
- security at our office buildings, with access limited and constantly monitored
- a clear desk policy that all paperwork is locked away overnight and when not in use
- secure offsite storage of paper archives
- secure two and three factor authentication for electronic systems containing sensitive personal data
- verification of identity and/or authority before disclosing personal data
- use of secure email to communicate personal data unless it is the express wish of the data subject
Apps and Devices
When you download or use our apps on your mobile device, information may be accessed from or stored to your device. Most often this is used in a similar way to a web browser cookie, such as by enabling the app to ‘remember’ you or provide you with the content you have requested.
Your web browser or device may also provide us with information about your device, such as a device identifier or IP address. Device identifiers may be collected automatically, such as the device ID, IP address, MAC address, IMEI number and app ID (a unique identifier relating to the particular copy of the app you are running).
If you have any concerns about the information which might be accessed from or stored on your device by us, you may wish to only access our content through a web browser and review your web browser settings.
Closed Circuit Television (CCTV)
CCTV is operated throughout Cheshire East and provides continuous monitoring 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days per year. Signs are in prominent positions in various locations across town centres and car parks.
See our CCTV page for further details
Changes to our Privacy Notice
We regularly review our privacy notice and encourage you to check it from time to time. This notice was last updated in August 2019.
Contacting us about this Privacy Notice
If you have any questions or comments about this privacy notice please contact:
Cheshire East Council
1st Floor, Westfields
c/o Municipal Buildings, Earle Street, Crewe CW1 2BJ