Privacy Policy

How we use personal information that you provide to us


Topics:
 

Who is responsible for my information?
What information do we collect about you?
How do we collect the information about you?
How will we use this information about you?
How we share your personal information
How we will keep you information secure
Marketing
Cookies
Access to your personal information and correction
Disclosure of Personal Information
Links to other website
Changes to our Privacy Policy
How to contact us
 


1. Who is responsible for my information?

We take your privacy and the security of your information very seriously. This policy sets out our approach to safeguarding the privacy of the personal information we hold. Severnside Housing is responsible for collecting, processing, storing and keeping your information secure. We manage personal information in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998, and are registered (registration number Z5906442) as Data Controllers with the Information Commissioner’s Office.

We are guardians of your customers and employee’s information and we take your privacy and the security of your information very seriously. This policy sets out our approach to safeguarding the privacy of the personal information we hold.

This policy applies to all personal information collected by Severnside Housing, our subsidiaries and partners, and contractors acting on our behalf.

2. What information do we collect about you?

Our approach to collecting, storing and using your personal information goes beyond how we process your information when you visit our web-site. This privacy policy details our overarching approach to your data. The types of people’s personal information we may collect about you could include, but is not limited to:
 

Name
Date of birth
National Insurance number
Address
Contact details (phone/mobile/email)
Photographs and CCTV images 
 

We may also collect sensitive personal data:
 

Racial or ethnic origin
Religious or other similar beliefs
Physical or mental health or condition
Convictions, proceedings and criminal acts
 

We aim to only collect the information we need to deliver you a service, however, there are times when we will hold a set of your information for longer than is necessary. This is in limited situations, but one we acknowledge, as a Housing Provider with historic former tenancy and employee information being obtained as part of our Large Stock Value Transfer in 1 October 2001.

Moving forward we will not collect information about you that we do not need and we will ensure that the personal information we collect is updated to our systems in a timely and accurate manner. We will retrospectively review our archived information in a proportionate, balanced and timely manner.

3. How do we collect the information about you?

We collect personal information from you in a range of ways and at a number of different times. These include:

  • When you apply for a property with us (for example, application form and supporting information.
  • During the course of any tenancy; lease or licence that you are granted (for example, contact details, information relating to welfare benefits and your income and savings and any information gathered as part of any investigations into nuisance or anti social behaviour.
  • At the end of a tenancy (for example, forwarding address)
  • Information when you complete surveys, questionnaires, feedback forms and participate in competitions.

4. How will we use the information about you?

We use your information to respond to your enquiries by mail, phone, e-mail or in person; to allocate and manage homes; to provide you with services appropriate to your needs and to sustain your relationship with us; to contact you to inform you of changes to legislation and/or policies that may directly affect you.  

We may also use your personal information for technical administration; research and development; customer administration; invite you to participate in surveys/questionnaires; marketing and to identify areas where we can improve the services we provide.

We may use certain personal information for profiling or segmentation work to help us improve services and deliver them in a more targeted way (for example, we may use someone’s credit history to help manage arrears or offer money advice).

We only collect or use personal information for those purposes indicated in our notification with the Information Commissioner’s Office.

We will regularly review the personal information we hold about you and make changes to any service or information-handling processes when required by law.

We may apply markers to your information (for example, in relation to your vulnerability or health status) to enable us to tailor and deliver services to you. We may also use a marking system and apply relevant flags where a member of staff has a concern in regards to someone’s safety or behaviour. When applying these warning flags we will apply to the ICO’s code of practice and our own internal permission procedures.

4.1 How we use your telephone number

Text messages and contact via telephone provide a direct way to contact and share information with you about the services we can deliver to you. It can also help you receive important promotional/marketing messages which may interest or help you.

We may use your telephone number that you have provided us to keep in contact with you by text. When we send SMS/text messages, there may be someone in your household who may read the message before you are able to. You may like to inform the people who live with you that you may receive text messages from time to time.

4.2 Operational SMS/text messaging, emails and telephone calls

If you supply us with your contact details, we may use them to call or send you operational text messages. Examples of operational text messages include:

·         Confirming a repair and/or a time and date for a repairs contractor to visit

·         Confirming a home visit

·         Sending a reminder about an appointment

·         Asking you to contact a named person

We are required to deliver a service which we have entered into with you as Severnside Housing. Based on this once you supply your details you do so understanding we have a legitimate ground to use this information. Therefore once you supply your contact details you do so knowing we will use these for operational purposes.

4.3 Applying to work at Severnside Housing

If you submit an application to work for us we will use your personal information to process your application and to produce and monitor recruitment statistics. We will not take up references without your prior permission. We will not share or disclose your information unless you have given us your consent or we are required to by law. Where we are required to carry out a Disclosure and Barring Service check we will comply with the law and your rights when carrying out these checks.

We retain personal information relating to unsuccessful applicants for no longer than 12 months, for use in the event of an appeal, or future vacancies. We produce statistical information to assist with recruitment analysis.

5. How we may share your personal information

We may from time to time have a legal requirement to share your personal information. However, our normal practice is not share your information without your consent unless we are required to by law.  We can obtain your consent in different ways; this can be when you apply for housing, work with us or when you sign your tenancy; licence or lease agreement and/or activate your right to buy status. We can also inform you by letter, website, forms, and newsletters and so on where we intend to obtain, use and share your information.

We have specific and relevant duties under the law to share information with other agencies such as law enforcement and government agencies or public bodies where we are legally required to do so. Examples may include

·         The prevention or detection of crime and fraud

·         The apprehension or prosecution of offenders

·         The assessment or collection of tax or duty owed to customs and excise

·         Sharing in connection with legal proceedings

·         Sharing in relation to the physical or mental health of an individual, where disclosure is required to protect them or others from serious harm

·         Research and statistical purposes

We may also share your information with emergency services and local authorities, where this is necessary to help them respond to an emergency situation that affects you or others.

In some areas we may enter into partnerships with other organisations such as other housing providers, local authorities and the police. An example of this is Severnside Housing joining a partnership to help prevent and control anti-social behaviour.  We will enter into a data sharing agreement before any sharing takes place with a partner organisation.

We will share your information to support legitimate business purposes. We do this to ensure that we can meet your needs, and also to meet our health and safety obligations towards those delivering services on our behalf. This may include sharing information with our contractors and suppliers to enable them to carry out duties on our behalf or to meet contractual obligations we may have. For example, we may share information to enable our repairs, gas or electric contractors to make appointments with you to carry out repairs/maintenance and/or deliver specific services.

We may share certain personal information with credit reference agencies and other companies for use in credit decisions, to pursue debtors or offer additional services.

We will also share information where there is a legitimate ground to do so, such as obtaining and sharing information to carryout failed gas and electrical checks.  Severnside Housing are committed to ensuring that we abide by the legal and regulatory grounds in regards to health and safety as well as the duty of care to our customers and others in regards to carrying out gas and electrical safety checks on our properties. Where we have exhausted all routine attempts to contact our customers to gain access to the property and where our customer has failed to allow access or engage, Severnside will use all means necessary including legal action to obtain access to the property. We shall use all public facing social media sites to try and engage and locate the primary tenant to book an appointment to carry out our legally obligated checks. When doing so we shall always keep in mind the rights of privacy and shall not publically engage the customer on their social media sites. But shall use the information in the public domain to locate and contact the customer.

We may ask a research company to undertake a survey for us, or we may ask a marketing company to provide details of products or services you may be interested in (such as new housing developments for sale or rent; money advice)

We will not sell your information to any third parties.

6. How we will keep your information secure

We store personal information both electronically and in paper form. We implement security policies, processes and technical security solutions to protect the personal information we hold, which are in line with the Law and Principle 7 of the Data Protection Act 1998 to mitigate against:

·         Unauthorised access

·         Improper use or disclosure

·         Unauthorised modification

·         Unlawful destruction or accidental loss

When you contact us, we may ask you to provide us with some information so that we can confirm your identity. If other people (e.g. family members, support workers, solicitors) act on your behalf we will take steps to ensure that you have agreed for them to do so. This may include asking them to provide us with supporting information to indicate your consent. We do this to protect you and to make sure that other people cannot find things out about you that they are not entitled to know.

7. Marketing

Your information will be used for direct marketing purposes to keep you updated with our latest services/offers.

7.1 Promotional and marketing SMS/text messaging and calls

Severnside Housing operates an affirmative opt-in to marketing with all our current and former tenants, leaseholders, freeholders, employees and contractors.

Our promotional or marketing services can benefit you and the people who reside with you in many different ways. 

Some examples how engaging with our marketing activities:

By receiving SMS/text messages you can benefit from receiving information about our own services and only those provided by our approved third parties (such as companies or groups we work with). Representative examples of the promotional or marketing text messages which we may send to you include:

·         Helping you if you have money worries, through advice, guidance and appropriate referrals to support agencies

·         Promoting services that may interest you, including supporting families with young people not in education, employment or training

·         Supporting families affected by anti-social behaviour

·         Giving you information on energy, heating or water saving services

·         Telling you how you can get advice on setting up your own business

·         Inviting you to take part in telephone surveys

·         Access to work readiness programme or employment training or employment opportunities

·         Learning and personal development programmes

·         Activities to help bring communities together

When you supply your contact details, you can ask us to either send or not send promotional and marketing SMS/text messages, materials etc. You can opt-out of receiving these types of SMS/text messages by calling our Customer Service Centre on 0300 300 0059 or emailing enquiries@severnsidehousing.co.uk

7.2 Opt Out of receiving Direct Marketing

You have the right at any time to ‘opt out’ of us processing using your personal information for direct marketing purposes. We then have up to 21 days to action your request.

If you no longer wish to be contacted for marketing purposes, please email enquiries@severnsidehousing.co.uk

 

8. Cookies

8.1 Visiting our Website

When someone visits our website, we collect standard internet log information and details of visitor behaviour patterns, using Google analytics (see section 8.3 - How we use Cookies). We do this to find out things such as the number of visitors to the various parts of the site.

We do not make any attempt to find out the identities of those visiting our websites. We will not associate any data gathered from this site with any personally identifying information from any source.

If we do want to collect personally identifiable information through our website, we will be up front about this. We will make it clear when we collect personal information and will explain what we intend to do with it.

8.2 What are Cookies

Cookies are text files placed on your computer by websites you visit. These are widely used to enable the websites to work properly (e.g. ensuring that the right personal information collected is attached to the individual who submitted it) when collecting information that you have provided. You may delete and block cookies if you wish from this site, however, please be aware that this could affect the functioning of this website. If you would like further information relating to cookies and what they do and how to delete them, please visit www.aboutcookies.org  or www.allaboutcookies.org.

8.3 How we use cookies

The table below explains the cookies we use and why we use them. Most web browsers allow some control of most cookies through the browser settings. To find out more about cookies, including how to see what cookies have been set and how to manage and delete them, visit www.aboutcookies.org or www.allaboutcookies.org. To opt out of being tracked by Google Analytics across all websites visit http://tools.google.com/dlpage/gaoptout.

Cookie

Cookie

Type

Expiry

Linked Info

Functions

CFID

CFTOKEN

JSESSIONID

Persist

Persist

Session

2 hours

2 hours

Session end

Username

When a user logs in, maintains Authentication state.

VOPECRA

Persist

Never

Anonymous

Remembers when a user has elected to accept cookies.

 

Cookies

Cookie

Name

Type

Expiry

Functions

Third Party Cookies

Cookie

Name

Type

Expiry

Functions

Google Analytics

_utma

_utmb

_utmc

_utmz

Persistent

2 years

30 mins

End of session

6 months

These cookies are used to collect information about how visitors use our websites. We use the information to compile reports and to help us improve the site. The cookies collect information in an anonymous form, including the number of visitors to the site, where visitors have come to the site from and the pages they visited.

Click here for an overview of privacy at Google.

Google Translate

googtrans

Session

End of session

Stores your chosen language (if you decide to change it from English). This means that you do not have to select your chosen language every time that you load a new page.

Click here for an overview of privacy at Google.

Google Analytics

_utma

_utmb

_utmc

_utmz

Persistent

2 years

30 mins

End of session

6 months

These cookies are used to collect information about how visitors use our websites. We use the information to compile reports and to help us improve the site. The cookies collect information in an anonymous form, including the number of visitors to the site, where visitors have come to the site from and the pages they visited.

Click here for an overview of privacy at Google.

Google Translate

googtrans

Session

End of session

Stores your chosen language (if you decide to change it from English). This means that you do not have to select your chosen language every time that you load a new page.

Click here for an overview of privacy at Google

8.4 Third party cookies

We sometimes embed video content and photos from websites such as YouTube and flickr. Pages with this embedded content may present cookies from these websites. Similarly, when you use one of the share buttons on our website, a cookie may be set by the service you have chosen to share content through. You should check the relevant third party website for more information about these cookies.

8.5 Accepting cookies

For this site to function properly you will need to accept cookies. Please bear in mind that if you do not accept cookies, certain personalised features of this website cannot be provided to you.

9. Access to your personal information and correction

9.1 Access to your personal information

You can ask us whether we are keeping personal information about you by writing to us. See 9.2 below.  The Data Protection Act 1998 gives you a number of rights in relation to your personal information. You can find out about your rights, and get further guidance, on the ICO website. You have rights under the Act and these are:

i)             Right to ask for a copy of your personal information

ii)            Right to object to marketing

iii)           Right to request data to be erased, destroyed or have inaccurate data corrected or removed

iv)           Right to know about automated decisions

v)            Right to compensation via the Courts

9.2 Requesting a copy of your personal information

As part of our service to you, we are happy to provide you with copies of specific documents (e.g. rent statements, tenancy agreements) upon request on an informal basis. If you want to make a larger or more comprehensive request, you can do this formally by making a ‘subject access request’. If you make a subject access request we will provide you with a readable copy of the personal information we hold about you. To make a subject access request you must:

·         Make your request in writing

·         Provide proof of your identity

·         Pay a £10.00 fee

If you would like a copy of some or all of your personal information please print off, complete the Data Subject Request Form 2.pdf [pdf] 90KB and return to the address listed below.

9.2 Correction to your personal information

We make every effort to ensure that the information we hold about you is accurate and up-to-date. You may ask us either to correct or remove information you think is inaccurate.

Please send your written request to the address below.

10. Links to other websites

This Privacy Policy only applies to this website and does not cover the links within this site to other websites. So if you link to other websites, you should read their own Privacy/Cookie Policies.

11. How to contact us

Please tell us if you have a concern about the personal information we hold about you, or how we use it. We’ll do our best to help you. If, after contacting us, you are still not satisfied you can complain to the Information Commissioner. You can also apply to the Court for compensation for distress and/or damages due to non-compliance of the Data Protection Act.

You can contact us at:-

Governance & Compliance Officer
Severnside Housing
Brassey Road
Old Potts Way
Shrewsbury
SY3 7FA

Or email us at: legalservices@severnsidehousing.co.uk

 For more information on data protection legislation and requirements you can also contact the Information Commissioners Office at www.ico.gov.uk or telephone 0303 123 1113.

12. Changes to our Privacy Policy

We keep our Privacy Policy under regular review and we will place any updates on this webpage. This Privacy Policy was last updated in July 2016.