When you use our website we collect information from you such as location data, cookies, or personal information you give us through completing online forms.
Webchat and email advice
If you use webchat, email advice or a form to request advice, find out more about how we use and store your information.
We use data called cookies to get information about how you're using our website - for example, what pages you click on and what device you're using. This helps us improve your experience of our website.
With your permission, we collect data on your location - to within 1 square kilometre. You can't be identified from this information - it's completely anonymous.
This helps us make sure people are getting the content that applies to where they live.
It also means we can see how demand for our content changes by location - for example, if a lot of people look at housing advice in one area of the country, we can target our services to meet that need or investigate why there are problems with housing in that area.
How we collect your location data
We'll collect your location data using Google Analytics. When you visit our website for the first time, a box will appear at the top left of your screen telling you that Citizens Advice would like to know your location. You can choose to block it, or allow your location to be shared with us.
We'll never collect your location data on pages about domestic abuse or violence, or on pages about immigration.
If you don't want Google Analytics to collect your data, you can opt out by downloading the opt-out plug in to your device.
Storing and sharing your location data
We download your data from Google Analytics onto our secure internal systems. We'll use the data to create anonymised statistics about how people in different locations are using our website. We might share these with local Citizens Advice to help them identify what advice people are looking for in their area.
We keep location data for 38 months before deleting it.
If you used another feature on our site
We also collect information about you if you:
are an adviser and gave us feedback using the feedback form
fill in template letters on our advice pages
use an advice tool and email the results to yourself
are an adviser and use the 'Email page' function on our web pages
If you used the feedback form
We don't collect your personal details when you fill in our feedback form, unless you're an adviser.
If you're an adviser
When you leave feedback on our website as an adviser, we ask for your contact details including name, email and phone number. It's optional - you can leave feedback anonymously if you want to.
We'll get your permission to collect your information this way by asking you to tick a box on our feedback form.
We use your feedback to improve our website. This might be things like correcting broken links or improving our online advice.
We use your contact details to get in touch about your feedback if we need to.We only access your information for other reasons if we really need to - for example, to investigate complaints.
We don't share your personal information.
Your information is stored securely on our own internal systems. All volunteers and staff who access your data have had data protection training to make sure your information is handled sensitively and securely.
The feedback form itself is provided by our trusted research partner, Survey Monkey. We keep your details securely on their system.
We keep your feedback indefinitely, but we'll delete your personal details after 2 years - this includes your name, contact details and your local Citizens Advice.
If you used a template letter
The information you put in your template letter is processed on the Amazon Web Services (AWS) server. This means our website can create your letter for you. Once your letter is created, your information isn’t stored by us or AWS.
If you used an advice tool and emailed the results to yourself
your email address
the answers you gave
the advice you asked to be emailed to you
the date and time you asked for the advice to be sent
We’ll share this information with the Amazon Web Services (AWS) email server so they can send the email to you on our behalf. Your information won't be used for any other purpose. It won't be shared with anyone else.
Your details are stored on this server until the email is successfully sent to you. Once it’s been sent, your details will be automatically deleted after 24 hours.
If the email isn’t sent successfully, your details will be stored for up to 7 days so we can work out why this happened. Your details will be automatically deleted after 7 days.
If you’re an adviser and you used the ‘Email page’ function
We'll collect your name, email address and the email of the person you want to send the page to. We collect these details so you can email a link of the page to someone you know. We also collect and store the date and time you sent the email.
Your information is stored in our website content management system and can only be accessed by Citizens Advice IT staff.
We share your information with the Amazon AWS email server so they can send the email for you on our behalf. Your information won't be used for any other purpose and won't be shared with anyone else.
Your information is kept on our system indefinitely, unless you ask us to remove it.
If you used the press release alert service
your email address
your first name
your last name
We’ll share this information with the MailChimp email server so they can send the email to you on our behalf. Your information won't be used for any other purpose. It won't be shared with anyone else. Your information isn’t stored by us.
Contact us about your data
You can contact us at any time and ask us:
what information we've stored about you
to change or update your details
to delete your details from our records
Send us a message at email@example.com.
If you want to make a complaint
If you're not happy with how we've handled your data, you can make a complaint.