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What you can do with your information

27 November 2018

The law gives you a number of rights to control what personal information is used by us and how it is used by us.

You can ask for access to the information we hold on you

We would normally share what we record about you with you when we assess your needs or provide you with services.
 
However, you also have the right to ask for all the information we have about you and the services you receive from us. When we receive a request from you in writing, we must give you access to everything we’ve recorded about you.


However, we cannot share any records which contain:

  • confidential information about other people
  • data a professional thinks will cause serious harm to you or someone else’s physical or mental wellbeing
  • if we think that giving you the information may stop us from preventing or detecting a crime

This applies to personal information that is in both paper and electronic records.

If you are unable to ask for your information in writing, we’ll make sure there are other ways that you can request it.  If you have any queries about access to your information please contact transparencyteam@essex.gov.uk or 0333 013 953.

You can ask to change information you think is inaccurate

You should let us know if you disagree with something written about you.

We may not always be able to change or remove that information but we’ll correct factual inaccuracies and may include your comments in the record to show that you disagree with it. 
 
Let us know if something is inaccurate.
 

You can ask to delete information (right to be forgotten)

In some circumstances you can ask for your personal information to be deleted, for example, where:

  • your personal information is no longer needed for the reason why it was collected in the first place
  • you have removed your consent for us to use your information  (where there is no other legal reason us to use it)
  • there is no legal reason for the use of your information
  • deleting the information is a legal requirement

Where your personal information has been shared with others, we’ll tell them about your request to us for it to be deleted.

Please note that we don’t have to delete your information if:

  • we are required to have it by law
  • it is used for freedom of expression
  • it is for public health purposes
  • it is for scientific or historical research, or statistical purposes where it would make information unusable
  • it is necessary for legal claims.

You can ask to limit what we use your personal data for

You have the right to ask us to restrict what we use your personal information for where:

  • you have identified inaccurate information and have told us of it
  • we have no legal reason to use that information but you want us to restrict what we use it for rather than erase the information altogether

When information is restricted it can’t be used other than to securely store the data and with your consent to handle legal claims and protect others, or where it is required by law.

Where restriction of use has been granted, we’ll inform you before we carry on using your personal information.

You have the right to ask us to stop using your personal information for any council service. However, if this request is approved this may cause delays or prevent us delivering that service.

Where possible we’ll seek to comply with your request, but we may need to hold or use information because we are required to by law.

You can ask to have your information moved to another provider (data portability)

You have the right to ask for your personal information to be given back to you or another service provider of your choice in a commonly used format. This is called data portability.

However this only applies if we’re using your personal information with consent (not if we’re required to by law) and if decisions were made by a computer and not a human being.

It is unlikely that data portability will apply to most of the services you receive from the Council.

You can ask to have any computer made decisions explained to you, and details of how we may have ‘profiled’ you

You have the right to question decisions made about you by a computer, unless it’s required for any contract you have entered into, required by law, or you’ve consented to it.

You also have the right to object if you are being ‘profiled’. Profiling is where decisions are made about you based on certain things in your personal information, e.g. your health conditions.

If and when ECC uses your personal information to profile you, in order to deliver the most appropriate service to you, you will be informed.

If you have concerns regarding automated decision making, or profiling, please contact the Data Protection Officer who’ll be able to advise you about how we use your information. 

You can object to us sending you direct marketing

You have the right to ask us to stop sending you information about our services. If you ask us to stop we will do so.

You may have the right to object to our use of your personal information

In limited circumstances you can object to our use of your personal data, in such cases we would need to weigh your right to privacy against the wider public interest in continuing to use your information.

Next: Who do we share your information with?

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