Merton Council

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How we use your information

This page describes the how we use the information that you give us – particularly the information that relates to you.  We always aim to process your information fairly. That means telling you what we are going to do with it, how long we are going to keep it and who we will disclose it to. This is sometimes called a 'fair processing notice', or 'privacy notice'.

Why we have information about you

For some of our services, we need to hold information about you so that we can provide you with services or get in touch with you.  When we hold your details we will keep them secure. If we need to pass them on to other people who are contracted to provide services for us, we will tell you.  Our contractors will only use your details to provide services to you on our behalf.

How we use your information

The main reasons for which we use personal data are:

  • Provision of services (such as rubbish collection, libraries, meals on wheels)
  • Assessment and collection of council tax
  • Administration of benefits
  • Administration of grants and waiting lists
  • Education services including school admissions and student grants
  • Planning, licensing, registration and regulatory activities
  • Public health including the prevention and control of disease
  • Social services for both adults and children
  • Accounting and record-keeping including records of suppliers.
  • Personnel matters including prospective, current and past employees
  • Crime prevention including the operation of CCTV
  • Advertising, marketing and public relations including direct marketing

The full list of our reasons is on the Information Commissioner's Office website. To see this go to the Data Protection Public Register (Information Commissioner's Office website) and enter our registration number, which is Z4606899. The Information Commissioner is an independent official appointed to oversee the Data Protection Act 1998.

We will have processes in place to make sure the information we hold about you is correct, up to date and necessary. We will keep it only for as long as we need to. We will have systems in place keep your personal data secure, whether it is held on paper or electronically.

How we share your information

We will share your information internally and with with partners organisations and other external organisations where we are required or permitted to do so by law. We will share information with the council’s Electoral Services team as permitted by law for the purpose of maintaining the electoral register. Where you have given us specific consent to share your information, you have the right to withdraw or alter that consent at any time.

Detecting fraud and other crimes

We have a duty to protect public money so we may use the information we hold to prevent and detect fraud. We also pass information to central government for use in the National Fraud Initiative (NFI) which investigates fraud. For more information on the NFI please see the NFI web page (gov.uk site). We will disclose your personal information to the police and other law enforcement agencies when they ask for it during the investigation of a crime, as permitted by the Data Protection Act 1998.

Marketing

We won't give or sell your information to any third party for marketing purposes unless we have your permission.

Children and young people

There is more information for specific areas related to children and young people:

Public Health

Information about how this service uses personal data is contained in the Public Health Privacy Notice.

Complaints relating to data protection breaches

You have the right to be confident that the council handles your personal information responsibly and in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998. You can complain to us if you have a concern about the way the council is handling your information, for instance if:

  • your information is not being kept secure
  • inaccurate information is being held about you
  • your personal information has been disclosed to a person or organisation that it should not have
  • information about you is being kept for longer than is necessary, or
  • your information is being used for a different purpose than it was originally collected for.

There is only one stage for these types of complaints, and the Head of Information Governance will see the response. If that response does not fully address your complaint, or if you are still not satisfied with the council’s actions, you can contact the Information Commissioner’s Office ('ICO'). Further information can be found on the ICO web site - the link is below. The ICO's address is Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF, and the phone number is 0303 123 1113 (local rate).

If you have any concerns

If you are concerned about the way we have handled your personal information, please contact us using the details below. Although the Information Commissioner's Office is able to investigate your concerns too, they will expect you to contact us first, to try to resolve the issue.

Related websites

Contact us

The Information Governance Team
Merton Civic Centre
London Road
Morden
SM4 5DX

Telephone: 020 8545 4182
Fax: 020 8545 4105
Email: data.protection@merton.gov.uk

This page was last updated on Monday 22 May 2017

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