Privacy notice electoral services
Our electoral services privacy notice explains how we use your personal information and tells you about your privacy rights and how the law protects you.
We collect information about you in order to provide you with the electoral services such as electoral registration, conducting elections and polls.
Information we collect
We will be asking you for:
- your name, address, date of birth and nationality
- your National Insurance number or other relevant personal identifier
- scanned application forms & dates of any letters of correspondence
- notes about any relevant circumstances that you have told us
- your previous or any redirected address
- other occupants that live in your home
- if you are over 76 or under 18
- whether you have chosen to opt out of the open version of the Electoral Register
We keep records about potential and actual electors, voters, citizens, candidates and their agents, staff employed at an election and the people we need to pay. These may be written down or kept on a computer.
Why we collect this information
The Electoral Registration Officer (ERO) and Returning Officer (RO) are data controllers who collect and use information about residents to enable us to carry out legal obligations of compiling the electoral register and running national and local polls.
The legal basis for using this information is covered by section 9A of the Representation of the People Act 1983, with additional requirements in the Electoral Administration Act 2006 where each Registration Officer must take all steps necessary to carry out their duty to maintain the register of electors.
We will, based on your nationality, include your name on the Electoral Register so that you are able to vote.
It is important that our records are accurate and up-to-date as they will help make sure that our staff are able to provide you with the help, advice or support you need. Whilst it is not a requirement that you provide an email address or telephone number it does provide us with a quick and easy way to contact you about your registration.
Who we might share your information with
The process of checking residents personal identifiers to ensure eligibility for inclusion in the Electoral Register is overseen by the Cabinet Office via the IER Digital Service.
The Department for Work and Pensions use registration data to verify the identity of new applicants, and the Cabinet Office will inform local authorities when people have moved out of their area.
Other occasions when your information needs to be shared include:
- with our printers and software providers, to compile and manage the register, to print your poll cards, postal vote packs and other electoral material
- details of whether you have voted (but not how you have voted) with those who are entitled in law to receive it after an election
- where the health and safety of others is at risk
- when the law requires us to pass on information under special circumstances, crime prevention or the detection of fraud as part of the National Fraud Initiative
Under the Representation of the People Regulations 2001:
- with registered political parties, elected representatives, candidates, agents and other permitted participants who can use it for electoral purposes only
- with Credit reference agencies, as we have a legal obligation to sell the register to a credit reference agency for the checking of credit applications
- with the British Library, UK Statistics Authority, the Electoral Commission and other statutory recipients of the Electoral Register
We are required by law to report certain information to appropriate authorities – for example:
- where a formal court order has been issued
- for the prevention or detection of a crime
- to the Jury Central Summoning Bureau indicating those persons who are aged 76 or over and are no longer eligible for jury service
Any third party that we share your information with will not share this further for any other purpose.
What we do with your information
We will use this information to process your application and retain your details on the electoral service’s database. We will also use this information to enable us to write to you to confirm that we have the correct information, as well as informing you of forthcoming elections and polls.
How long we keep your information
The Electoral Registration Officer & Returning Officer need to process your personal data in order to prepare for and conduct elections. Your details will be kept and updated in accordance with our legal obligations and in line with statutory retention periods and the periods in our retention schedule.
If you have a concern about the way we are collecting or using your personal data, you should raise your concern with us in the first instance or directly to the Information Commissioner’s Office at: https://ico.org.uk/concerns/.
You can also contact our Data Protection Officer by email at email@example.com.