At Citizens Advice we collect and use your personal information to help solve your problems, improve our services and tackle wider issues in society that affect people’s lives.
We only ask for the information we need. We always let you decide what you’re comfortable telling us, explain why we need it and treat it as confidential.
When we record and use your personal information we:
- only access it when we have a good reason
- only share what is necessary and relevant
- don’t sell it to commercial organisations
At times we might use or share your information without your permission. If we do, we’ll always make sure there’s a legal basis for it. This could include situations where we have to use or share your information:
- to comply with the law - for example, if a court orders us to share information (this is called ‘legal obligation’)
- to protect someone’s life - for example, sharing information with a paramedic if a client was unwell at our office (this is called ‘vital interests’)
- to carry out our legitimate aims and goals as a charity - for example, to create statistics for our national research (this is called ‘legitimate interests’)
- for us to carry out a task where we’re meeting the aims of a public body in the public interest - for example, delivering a government or local authority service (this is called ‘public task’)
- to carry out a contract we have with you - for example, if you’re an employee we might need to store your bank details so we can pay you (this is called ‘contract’)
- to defend our legal rights - for example, sharing information with our legal advisors if there was a complaint that we gave the wrong advice
We handle and store your personal information in line with the law - including the General Data Protection Regulation and the Data Protection Act 2018.
This page covers how we, as your local charity, handle your information locally in our offices.
How Citizens Advice Citizens Advice East Hampshire collect your data
We will need your explicit consent to record and use your special category personal data - this includes information about your ethnicity, religion, health conditions, sexual orientation, trade union membership and political opinion. We will get your consent to store this data by asking you to:
- tick a box on our welcome form
- tick a box online
- give your verbal agreement
We’ll make sure all your information is kept safe in our secure case management system.
What Citizens Advice Citizens Advice East Hampshire ask for
We only ask for the information we need. We always let you decide what you're comfortable telling us, explain why we need it and treat it as confidential.
How Citizens Advice Citizens Advice East Hampshire use your information
Working on your behalf
When you give us authority to act on your behalf, for example to help you with a Universal Credit claim, we’ll need to share information with that third party.
We will ask for your verbal or written consent to share the relevant information with that third party (e.g. DWP, East Hampshire District Council, Radian, Solicitors, Creditors, etc).
How Citizens Advice Citizens Advice East Hampshire store your information
Your information is stored securely on a cloud-based Google Suite system, and on the Citizens Advice system Casebook. All volunteers and staff who access your data have had data protection training to make sure your information is handled sensitively and securely.
We keep your data for 6 years and it's then deleted.
How Citizens Advice Citizens Advice East Hampshire share your information
If we refer you to a partner organisation such as the local authority, a local solicitor or charity, we will get your consent to share the information needed for this referral. This consent is obtained by signing a permission to share form.
We collect anonymous statistics and case studies to report to our funders about the work we do. There will be no identifying information in these statistics or case studies.
Contact Citizens Advice Citizens Advice East Hampshire about your information
If you have any questions about how your information is collected or used, you can contact our office.
17 Market Square
Telephone: 01420 544807
Forest Community Centre,
Telephone: 01420 477005
2nd Floor, Petersfield Library
27 The Square
Telephone: 01730 710281
You can contact us to:
- find out what personal information we hold about you
- correct your information if it’s wrong, out of date or incomplete
- request we delete your information
- ask us to limit what we do with your data - for example, ask us not to share it if you haven’t asked us already
- ask us to give you a copy of the data we hold in a format you can use to transfer it to another service
- ask us stop using your information
Who’s responsible for looking after your personal information
The national Citizens Advice charity and your local Citizens Advice operate a system called Casebook to keep your personal information safe. This means they’re a ‘joint data controller’ for your personal information that’s stored in the Casebook system.
Each local Citizens Advice is an independent charity, and a member of the national Citizens Advice charity. The Citizens Advice membership agreement also requires that the use of your information complies with data protection law.
You can find out more about your data rights on the Information Commissioner’s website.