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Privacy policy

This policy covers the treatment of personally identifiable information that Wiltshire Council collects when you are using the Wiltshire Council website, when you email us, or when you complete and submit an online form via our website.

This policy covers the treatment of personally identifiable information that Wiltshire Council collects when you are using the Wiltshire Council website, when you email us, or when you complete and submit an online form via our website.

Wiltshire Council holds and processes personal data in accordance with all current legislation relating to data protection and complies with the Data Protection Act 1998.

The council also automatically receives and records information on server logs from your browser including your IP address and the page you requested.

The council uses the information for:

  • Fulfilling your request for information or services
  • As input to improving our site
  • To inform you about improvements to our site

Information collection and use

You can visit our site and use many of the services without telling us who you are or giving us any personally identifiable information. 

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As a local authority, Wiltshire Council collects, holds and processes a considerable amount of information, including personal information about the citizens it serves, to allow it to provide services effectively.

The council recognises that this information is important to the citizens and that it is responsible to the citizens for the information it holds about them. As such, it takes seriously its responsibilities to ensure that any personal information it collects and uses is done so proportionately, correctly and safely.

Find out more information about what personal data is from the Information Commissioner. Essentially it is information which relates to or can identify a living individual.

The council collects, holds and uses personal data to allow it to provide services on behalf of the citizens of Wiltshire. These services include, among others, providing schools and educational facilities within the county; providing care and support for vulnerable individuals and their families; maintaining and improving the environment of the county and protecting the citizens generally.

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Wiltshire Council will continually review and update this privacy notice to reflect changes in our services and feedback from service users, as well as to comply with changes in the law. If there are substantial changes to this statement or in how Wiltshire Council will use your personal information, we will advertise the updated notice both on the front page of the Wiltshire Council web site and in council offices.

Wiltshire Council encourages you to periodically visit the council’s website to review this notice and to be informed of how Wiltshire Council is protecting your information.

Please see the respective service’s websites for any additional specific privacy policies which may apply to discrete business areas.

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At all times, Wiltshire Council will comply with the legal requirements set out by the Data Protection Act 1998 in relation to the collection, holding and processing of your personal data.

If you would like to know more or have any concerns about how your information is being processed please contact the Information Governance team.

If you require general information about the Data Protection Act, information is available from the Information Commissioner.

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You have the right to request that Wiltshire Council cease processing your personal data in relation to any council service. Where possible, Wiltshire Council will seek to comply with your request; however, ceasing to process your information may cause delays or hinder the council’s ability to provide services to you. There may be some situations where it will not be able to do this, e.g. where Wiltshire Council is required to hold or process information to comply with a legal requirement or obligation.

You are also legally entitled to request access to any personal information held by Wiltshire Council about yourself. Again, Wiltshire Council will seek to comply with your request but there may be some situations where it may not be able to do this in full, e.g. where information held was given in confidence, and to do so will disclose the source, contrary to a third party’s privacy rights. For further information about either requesting access to your personal data or to cease processing personal data please contact the council’s Information Governance team. See ‘Contact Us’ for further information.

While Wiltshire Council tries to ensure that any personal data it holds about you is correct, there may be situations where the information it holds is no longer accurate. If you find that this is the case, please contact the department holding the information or the Corporate Information Governance team so that any errors can be investigated and corrected, or your details updated.

Wiltshire Council will not use your personal data for third party marketing purposes without your prior express consent.

Wiltshire Council will not pass any personal data on to third parties, other than those who either process information on our behalf or because of a legal requirement, and it will only do so, where possible, after Wiltshire Council has ensured that sufficient steps have been taken to protect the personal data by the recipient.

Wiltshire Council will not sell or rent your personally identifiable information to anyone, or use the data for any other purpose incompatible with the purpose for which it was originally collected. Wiltshire Council will only send personally identifiable information about you to other companies when we have your consent, or have a legal reason to do so. We may also use your information in response to subpoenas, court orders or other legal process. We will only hold your information for as long as necessary for these purposes. 

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You are entitled to apply for personal information recorded about you and/or your child by making a Subject Access Request under Section 7 of the Data Protection Act 1998.  Please note you can only obtain information which is about yourself (or your child/ren if under the age of 14 when they may have capacity to apply in their own right). We make no charge for this service, but you may find other authorities charge up to a maximum of £10.

 If you wish to make any such application, please write to: Information Governance, Corporate Office, County Hall, Trowbridge BA14 8JN or email to make your request at dataprotection@wiltshire.gov.uk. Please be as specific as you can about the information you seek as this helps us to find it as quickly as possible.

Before providing you with such sensitive information, the Information Governance team will need to see evidence to confirm your identity (this can be by scan or photocopy of a passport or driving licence or birth certificate) and address (similarly by scan/copy of a utility bill or official letter header). Your identity evidence will not be retained after it has been examined.

If you are seeking information from your child(ren)’s records, in addition we will need to see something to prove parental responsibility such as copies of the child(ren)'s birth certificates.

Please do not send original documents to the council offices as we cannot guarantee their safety.

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Wiltshire Council will not sell or rent your personally identifiable information to anyone, or use the data for any other purpose incompatible with the purpose for which it was originally collected. 

Wiltshire Council will only send personally identifiable information about you to other companies when we have your consent, or have a legal reason to do so. We may also use your information in response to subpoenas, court orders or other legal process. We will only hold your information for as long as necessary for these purposes.

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Wiltshire Council may use information about your ethnic background, first language, gender, sexual orientation and age (“equalities data”) for the purposes of compiling statistical data about the population of the county at large and the take up council services by various groups, both to assist in complying with their legal obligations and to assist the council in the effective planning and provision of future services.

Such statistical data or statistical analysis will not allow the identification of any specific individual nor will it have any impact on any individual’s entitlement to council services and facilities.

Such equalities data may also be used to allow the council to provide sufficient assistance where required, e.g. to provide translation services or access facilities, e.g. induction hearing loop, where appropriate.

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Data matching involves comparing computer records held by one body against other computer records held by the same or another body to see how far they match. This is usually personal information.

Wiltshire Council undertakes data matching, where necessary, for a number of purposes, to comply with legal requirements placed on the council.

These include to:

  • Detect and prevent crime/fraud
  • Assist in emergency response management

In addition, further data matching may be undertaken on a directorate level. Please see the respective service’s website for any additional directorate specific privacy policies.

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Data matching may also be used to assist the council in responding to emergencies or major accidents, by allowing the council, in conjunction with the emergency services, to identify individuals who may need additional support in the event of for example, an emergency evacuation.

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Wiltshire Council is required by law to protect the public funds it administers. We process and share the information provided to us for the following purposes:

  • Council employee payroll
  • Council employee pensions
  • Electoral register
  • Student loans
  • Housing
  • Supported care (home residents and care home residents)
  • Transport passes, including residents’ parking blue badges
  • Insurance claimants
  • Housing and council tax benefits
  • Licences, e.g. market trader/ operator, taxi driver and personal licences to supply alcohol
  • Council tax
  • Leisure
  • Property (planning, business rates)
  • Libraries
  • Information provided by external bodies, e.g. utility companies, credit reference agencies and service providers, including registered social landlords

The processing and data sharing is to prevent and/or detect potential fraud and crime, by both conducting our own data matching, as well as sharing this information with other public bodies, such as; the Cabinet Office, the Department for Work and Pensions, other Local Authorities, HM Revenues and Customs, the police, as well as utility companies, credit reference agencies and service providers/ contractors and/or partner bodies, where the disclosure of such information is either:

a) necessary for the purposes of the prevention and/or detection of crime; and/or,

b) is otherwise necessary to comply with any other legal obligation.

Computerised data matching allows potentially fraudulent claims, transactions, applications and payments to be identified. Where a match is found and two or more records have contradictory or conflicting information, the inconsistency will require further investigation. No assumption can be made as to whether there is fraud, error or other explanation until an investigation is carried out. Regardless, the data matching process is a proven way of helping to ensure that records are up to date and accurate.

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Wiltshire Council is working on improving how it provides services to the citizens of Wiltshire.

Single View (SV) is a programme of work collating and sharing specific relevant information between a number of public authority services within the county the (Police, Fire, Ambulance, NHS Trusts, and GP surgeries). Find out more about Single View.

Each SV data sharing arrangement is agreed by submission of a detailed and specific proposal to meet a distinct and individual need and will enable a significant additional service delivery that otherwise may not be possible. Each SV sharing will only be authorised once compliance with data protection principles has been demonstrated.

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In deciding what personal data to collect, hold and use, the council is committed to ensuring that it will:

  • Recognise that any personal data handled by Wiltshire Council is held on behalf of that person and that we ensure we respect that responsibility
  • Adopt and maintain high standards in respect of the handling and use of that personal data
  • Only collect, hold and use personal data where it is necessary and proportionate to do so
  • Securely delete any personal data when no longer needed
  • Keep your personal data secure and safe
  • Not unnecessarily and without good reason, infringe the privacy of individuals.
  • Consider and address the privacy risks first when planning to use or hold personal information in new ways, such as when introducing new systems
  • Be open with individuals about how we use their information and who we give it to
  • Make it easy for individuals to access and correct their personal information
  • Ensure that there is effective safeguards and systems in place to make sure personal information is kept securely and does not fall into the wrong hands
  • Provide training to staff who handle personal information and treat it as a disciplinary matter if they misuse or don’t look after personal information properly
  • Put appropriate financial and human resources into looking after personal information to make sure we can live up to our promises
  • Regularly check that we are living up to our promises and report on how we are doing

The council may disclose personal data to third parties, but only where it is necessary, either to comply with a legal obligation, or where permitted under the Data Protection Act, e.g. where the disclosure is necessary for the purposes of the prevention and/or detection of crime, or where it is necessary to allow a third party working for or on behalf of the council.

The council will strive to ensure that any personal data in its care will be kept safe and that where your information is disclosed to a third party, Wiltshire Council will seek to ensure that the third party has sufficient systems and procedures in place to prevent the loss of personal data.

Where the council seeks to disclose sensitive personal data, such as medical details, to third parties, we will do so only with your prior express consent or where we are legally required to do.

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We use Google Analytics (GA) to collect statistical data about our visitors and how they use our site so that we can improve our website. The GA cookies collect information in a way that does not form, including the number of visitors to the site, where visitors have come to the site from and the pages they visited.

We collect this information in a way that does not identify you and the data is not shared with anybody else.

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A cookie is a collection of information that some websites leave on your computer to identify you if you use or return to the site. We use cookies to make our website easier for you to use. You can remove any cookies already stored on your computer but doing so may prevent you from using parts of our website for example our area based service information or contact page. Find out more about the cookies we use.

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Information Governance Team
Wiltshire Council
County Hall
Bythesea Road
Trowbridge
BA14 8JN
dataprotection@wiltshire.gov.uk

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How and why we collect and use your personal information

Wiltshire Council is registered as a data controller with the Information Commissioner's Office. Full details of the registration are available at ICO register of data controllers

We will process personal data for the following purposes:

  • For the purpose to which you provided the information. e.g. processing information given on a benefit claim form for the purpose of processing your benefit claim, and to monitor the council's performance in responding to your request
  • To allow the council to be able to communicate and provide services appropriate to your needs, e.g. to be able to arrange suitable access arrangements where the citizen has mobility difficulties
  • To ensure that the council meets its legal requirements.
  • Where necessary for the Council's Law Enforcement functions, e.g. licensing, planning enforcement, trading standards, food safety, etc, where Wiltshire Council is legally obliged to undertake such processing
  • Where the processing is necessary for Wiltshire Council to comply with its legal obligations, e.g. the prevention and/or detection of crime
  • To process financial transactions including grants, payments and benefits involving Wiltshire Council, or where Wiltshire Council is acting on behalf of other government bodies, e.g. Department for Works and Pensions
  • Where you have consented to the processing
  • Where necessary to protect individuals from harm or injury or
  • Where otherwise permitted under the Data Protection Act 1998, e.g. disclosure to comply with legal obligations.
  • For businesses located in Business Improvement Districts (BiDs), Wiltshire Council will share details of payments and/or non-payments of BiD contributions, together with information about any associated recovery actions to the respective BiD Company.

Wiltshire Council may also use your personal data, after it has been anonymised, to allow the statistical analysis of data to allow the Council to effective target and plan the provision of services.

Find out more information on the Data Protection Act from the Information Commissioner.

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Last updated: 6 December 2016 | Last reviewed: 6 December 2016