This information is for:
Adactus Housing Association, Beech Housing Association, Chorley Community Housing, Miles Platting

Overview

We need certain personal and financial details about our customers to work effectively as a business. This article explains how we meet our obligations under the Data Protection Act to protect the personal information we may hold about you, and it also outlines your rights to inspect these details.

We store information such as:

 

  • Tenant names, date of birth, National Insurance numbers, demographic information and contact details
  • The details of other family members or people living in our properties
  • Rent payments made
  • Repairs requested
  • Copies of application or referral forms
  • Tenancy agreements
  • Support contracts
  • Support plans (where relevant)
  • We record and monitor complaints about our services
  • We record responses to surveys or involvement initiatives
  • We record all allegations of anti-social behaviour
  • Any correspondence to and from our residents, service users, other agencies or advocates
  • Recordings of telephone calls made to and from the organisation
  • CCTV images (If you live in a supported accommodation project with the provision of CCTV; the CCTV systems record and retain information for up to a month to safeguard your health and security)

 

It is important that you notify us of any changes to your personal information.

Data Protection principles

The Data Protection Act lists eight data protection principles, which the Group is obliged to follow:

  1. Personal data shall be processed fairly and lawfully
  2. Personal data shall be obtained only for one or more specified and lawful purposes, and shall not be further processed in any manner incompatible with that purpose or those purposes.
  3. Personal data shall be adequate, relevant and not excessive in relation to the purpose or purposes for which they are processed.
  4. Personal data shall be accurate and, where necessary, kept up to date.
  5. Personal data processed for any purpose or purposes shall not be kept for longer than is necessary for that purpose or those purposes.
  6. Personal data shall be processed in accordance with the rights of data subjects under this Act.
  7. Appropriate technical and organisational measures shall be taken against unauthorised or unlawful processing of personal data and against accidental loss or destruction of, or damage to, personal data.
  8. Personal data shall not be transferred to a country or territory outside the European Economic Area unless that country or territory ensures an adequate level of protection for the rights and freedoms of data subjects in relation to the processing of personal data.

 

 

How we use your personal information

We use your personal information for providing services to you. We will also use the information to:

  • notify you of changes we are considering or planning to make
  • quality management - to help us improve our services
  • prevention and detection of crime.

We may also anonymise your information, so that it cannot be linked to you, as part of research exercises.

We will always tell you how we will use your information when collecting it from you - for example in an interview, survey form or on our website (see Website Privacy Policy).

Privacy and Confidentiality

Paper files and records containing personal information are kept in secure cabinets. These cabinets are locked when they are not in use.

We ensure any information on our computer system is secure, accurate, relevant and necessary. All our computers are secured with passwords, and staff are all fully trained on our systems.

We aim to ensure that staff and board members do not misuse any confidential information, or, pass on this information improperly to a third party.

Access to your information will normally be limited to ourselves. However, there may be occasions when we disclose your details to others.

  • Our suppliers who enable us to provide our services to you, or who provide services on our behalf (e.g.our contractor who handles your out of hours service calls for us; Banks e.g. to carry out payments through a secure system; Companies that assist us in mailing out our leaflets/ newsletters). The Group remains responsible for the fair and lawful processing of personal data shared with suppliers. We ensure this occurs through setting data protection requirements in contracts let with suppliers.
  • Other agencies we work with where we believe it is in your interest, or the public’s interest to do so, or as required by law. In particular: please be aware: Current or forwarding addresses may be shared with utility companies and Council Tax offices to ensure billing details are correct and prevent unexpected bills.  If you default upon any tenancy/licence conditions information about you may be provided to authorised debt recovery agencies, to enable them to recover the debt.  We may discuss your financial situation, rent payments (including any arrears) and any claims made for welfare benefits with; an external debt advice agency, Welfare rights advisor, the housing benefit department or the local authorities housing advice and homeless prevention team with the sole purpose of maximising your income. We also participate in the National Fraud Initiative and other authorised data-matching exercises, with the intention of preventing and detecting fraudulent activity.

 

We do not give anyone else access to your information, in return for payment, for their marketing or commercial purposes, unless you give specific consent.

Supported Tenants

Tenants' personal matters will be discussed within the supported Staff Team, however these discussions will be in confidential settings.

If a young adult asks a staff member to arrange support from an external service, they must consent to the disclosure of any personal information beforehand.

Disclosure of personal information without consent will be exceptional and only if required by law, a court order, or where overriding health and safety considerations apply.

Protecting Personal Information

Telephone enquiries:

When a tenant or housing applicant contacts us by phone, they will be asked to provide a piece of identifying data (e.g. date of birth) to ensure that personal information is only disclosed to the correct person.  If a tenant would like someone else to contact us on their behalf they need to confirm that to us directly, or if it is an ongoing arrangement, complete a tenancy contact authorisation form.

 

On-line services:

An increasing number of customers want to access information online, information such as:

  • Rent and payment details
  • Personal information
  • Repair details

We take security very seriously, and to access our online system users require the following details before they can log in:

  • A username (user ID)
  • A password
  • An identity number (tenancy number)


Users can only view their own data and cannot make changes to the data accessed.

All information is encrypted, ensuring that data is safe, secure, and available only to the registered user. The personal information viewed will not be stored on the computer used to access the site.

All data is held in a secure server environment, which uses the following technologies to prevent interference or unauthorised access: firewalls with packet-inspection, virus guard and other advanced technology. The technology in use is reviewed and updated regularly.


Complaints:

If someone contacts us to raise a complaint on your behalf we will always seek your permission first. This is because in responding to the complaint, the person claiming to represent you might view some of your personal data.


Rent enquiries:

If you want to make an enquiry about your rent, e.g. your payment history or the balance of your account, we will ask you to quote to us your 'Tenancy Number'.

Every tenant has a own unique Tenancy Number; you can find your Tenancy Number on your regular rent statements.

If you do not know your Tenancy Number we will ask for your full name and date of birth before giving you any details about your rent account.

Moving house:

When you move out of your home, after 12 months we will destroy the paper files relating to your tenancy (unless we are pursuing money owed or we need the information to support any dispute about disrepair or anti-social behaviour).

Access to Personal Information

You have the right to access files or other records containing information relating to:

  • Your present tenancy
  • Your past tenancies
  • Proposed tenancies
  • Support plans

The type of information includes:

  • A File about your current tenancy/licence/support package
  • Personal rent account
  • Files about applying for a home or transfer
  • Files about a past tenancy/licence you have held

Important information if you want to access your personal details:

  • You can make your request to any member of staff. All requests are passed by staff to our Data Controller to ensure we act in accordance with the Data Protection Act. 
  • To help us respond, please be as specific as you can be about the information you would like to see.
  • We may make a nominal charge if you ask us to photocopy any documents (we will let you know beforehand if we need to make this charge)
  • Under the legislation, we have up to 40 days from the date you request the information to provide it to you
  • You have the right to ask us to delete or change any inaccurate information held on our files. We consider all requests and will change or delete information that we agree is inaccurate.


Because we also need to respect the rights of others, we cannot make the following information available to you:

  • Information relating to, or identifying a third party, unless that person has given their written permission
  • Information from other agencies such as Social Services, doctors or lawyers which could reasonably be expected to be treated as confidential
  • Information that could cause physical or mental harm

The decision to refuse an individual access to personal information about themselves is taken at ‘Manager’ level within the Association, in liaison with our Data Controller.

If you are receiving support, the following apply

  • You can have immediate access to all parts of the file that contains your support plans, reviews etc
  • If you wish to view the full contents of your file, you must put this request in writing (We will allow you authorised access within 24 hours of the receipt of this request where feasible)

 

We will identify ourselves and provide a contact number for you to confirm our identity on request when contacting you about our services.

Data Protection Registration Details

Adactus Housing Group Ltd.
Data Protection Registration Number: Z832622X
Date Registered: 27 November 2003

Adactus Housing Association Ltd.
Data Protection Registration Number: Z1657414
Date Registered: 17 March 2009

Beech Housing Association Ltd.
Data Protection Registration Number: Z9332739
Date Registered: 17 March 2009

Chorley Community Housing.
Data Protection Registration Number: Z9847037
Date Registered: 10 April 2007

Acuna Ltd.
Data Protection Registration Number: Z4806450
Date Registered: 25 August 2000