The Data Protection Act 1998 controls how personal information is used by organisations, businesses or the government.
Everyone who is responsible for using data has to follow strict rules called ‘data protection principles’. They must make sure the information is:
- used fairly and lawfully
- used for limited, specifically stated purposes
- used in a way that is adequate, relevant and not excessive
- kept for no longer than is absolutely necessary
- handled according to people’s data protection rights
- kept safe and secure
- not transferred outside the UK without adequate protection
We must be able to satisfy one or more of the ‘Conditions for Processing’ before we are able to process such data:
- The individual who the personal data is about has consented to the processing
- The processing is necessary:
– in relation to a contract which the individual has entered into; or
– because the individual has asked for something to be done so they can enter into a contract
- The processing is necessary because of a legal obligation that applies to you (except an obligation imposed by a contract)
- The processing is necessary to protect the individual’s “vital interests”. This condition only applies in cases of life or death, such as where an individual’s medical history is disclosed to a hospital’s A&E department treating them after a serious road accident
- The processing is necessary for administering justice, or for exercising statutory, governmental, or other public functions
- The processing is in accordance with the “legitimate interests” condition
This data protection policy ensures Greendealshop.com Ltd:
- Complies with data protection law and follows good practice
- Protects the rights of staff, customers and partners
- Is open about how it stores and processes individuals’ data
- Protects itself from the risks of a data breach
This policy applies to:
- The head office of Greendealshop.com Ltd
- All branches of Greendealshop.com Ltd
- All staff and volunteers of Greendealshop.com Ltd
- All contractors, suppliers and other people working on behalf of Greendealshop.com Ltd
It applies to all data that the company holds relating to identifiable individuals, even if that information technically falls outside of the Data Protection Act 1998. This can include:
- Names of individuals
- Postal addresses
- Email addresses
- Telephone numbers
- …plus any other information relating to individuals
Data protection risks
This policy helps to protect Greendealshop.com Ltd from some very real data security risks, including:
- Breaches of confidentiality. For instance, information being given out inappropriately.
- Failing to offer choice. For instance, all individuals should be free to choose how the company uses data relating to them.
- Reputational damage. For instance, the company could suffer if hackers successfully gained access to sensitive data.
These rules describe how and where data should be safely stored. Questions about storing data safely can be directed to the IT manager or data controller.
When data is stored on paper, it should be kept in a secure place where unauthorised people cannot see it.
These guidelines also apply to data that is usually stored electronically but has been printed out for some reason:
- When not required, the paper or files should be kept in a locked drawer or filing cabinet.
- Employees should make sure paper and printouts are not left where unauthorised people could see them, like on a printer.
- Data printouts should be shredded and disposed of securely when no longer required.
When data is stored electronically, it must be protected from unauthorised access, accidental deletion and malicious hacking attempts:
- Data should be protected by strong passwords that are changed regularly and never shared between employees.
- If data is stored on removable media (like a CD or DVD), these should be kept locked away securely when not being used.
- Data should only be stored on designated drives and servers , and should only be uploaded to an approved cloud computing services .
- Servers containing personal data should be sited in a secure location, away from general office space
- Data should be backed up frequently. Those backups should be tested regularly, in line with the company’s standard backup procedures.
- Data should never be saved directly to laptops or other mobile devices like tablets or smart phones.
- All servers and computers containing data should be protected by approved security software and a firewall.
- Personal data is of no value to Greendealshop.com Ltd unless the business can make use of it. However, it is when personal data is accessed and used that it can be at the greatest risk of loss, corruption or theft:
- When working with personal data, employees should ensure the screens of their computers are always locked when left unattended.
- Personal data should not be shared informally . In particular, it should never be sent by email, as this form of communication is not secure.
- Data must be encrypted before being transferred electronically. The IT manager can explain how to send data to authorised external contacts.
- Personal data should never be transferred outside of the European Economic Area.
- Employees should not save copies of personal data to their own computers. Always access and update the central copy of any data.
The law requires Greendealshop.com Ltd to take reasonable steps to ensure data is kept accurate and up to date.
The more important it is that the personal data is accurate, the greater the effort Greendealshop.com Ltd should put into ensuring its accuracy.
It is the responsibility of all employees who work with data to take reasonable steps to ensure it is kept as accurate and up to date as possible.
- Data will be held in as few places as necessary . Staff should not create any unnecessary additional data sets.
- Staff should take every opportunity to ensure data is updated. For instance, by confirming a customer’s details when they call.
- Greendealshop.com Ltd will make it easy for data subjects to update the information Greendealshop.com Ltd holds about them. For instance, via the company website.
- Data should be updated as inaccuracies are discovered . For instance, if a customer can no longer be reached on their stored telephone number, it should be removed from the database.
Subject Access Requests
All individuals who are the subject of personal data held by Greendealshop.com Ltd are entitled to:
- Ask what information the company holds about them and why.
- Ask how to gain access to it.
- Be informed how to keep it up to date.
- Be informed how the company is meeting its data protection obligations.
If an individual contacts the company requesting this information, this is called a subject access request.
Subject access requests from individuals should be made by email, addressed to the data controller at firstname.lastname@example.org . The data controller can supply a standard request form, although individuals do not have to use this.
Individuals will be charged £10 per subject access request. The data controller will aim to provide the relevant data within 14 days.
The data controller will always verify the identity of anyone making a subject access request before handing over any information.