Data Protection Policy

1. Introduction

LINGOs needs to collect and use certain types of information about the Individuals or Service Users who come into contact with LINGOs in order to carry on our work. This personal information must be collected and dealt with appropriately whether is collected on paper, stored in a computer database, or recorded on other material and there are safeguards to ensure this.

2. Data Controller

LINGOs is the Data Controller, which means that it determines what purposes personal information held, will be used for.

3. Disclosure

LINGOs may share data with other appropriate agencies.

The Individual/Service User will be made aware in most circumstances how and with whom their information will be shared. There are circumstances where the law allows LINGOs to disclose data (including sensitive data) without the data subject’s consent.

These are:

a) Carrying out a legal duty

b) Protecting vital interests of an Individual/Service User or other person

c) The Individual/Service User has already made the information public

d) Conducting any legal proceedings, obtaining legal advice or defending any legal rights

e) Monitoring for equal opportunities purposes – i.e. race, disability or religion

f) Providing a confidential service where the Individual/Service User’s consent cannot be obtained or where it is reasonable to proceed without consent: e.g. where we would wish to avoid forcing stressed or ill Individuals/Service Users to provide consent signatures.

LINGOs regards the lawful and correct treatment of personal information as very important to successful working, and to maintaining the confidence of those with whom we deal.

LINGOs intends to ensure that personal information is treated lawfully and correctly.

LINGOs will, through appropriate management and strict application of criteria and controls:

  • Observe fully conditions regarding the fair collection and use of information

  • Meet its legal obligations to specify the purposes for which information is used

  • Collect and process appropriate information, and only to the extent that it is needed to fulfill its operational needs or to comply with any legal requirements

  • Ensure the quality of information used

  • Ensure that the rights of people about whom information is held, can be fully exercised. These include:

    • The right to be informed that processing is being undertaken,

    • The right of access to one’s personal information

    • The right to prevent processing in certain circumstances, and

    • The right to correct, rectify, block or erase information which is regarded as wrong information)

  • Take appropriate technical and organizational security measures to safeguard personal information

  • Ensure that personal information is not transferred abroad without suitable safeguards

  • Treat people justly and fairly whatever their age, religion, disability, gender, sexual orientation or ethnicity when dealing with requests for information

  • Set out clear procedures for responding to requests for information

4. Data collection

Informed consent is when:

  • An Individual/Service User clearly understands why their information is needed, who it will be shared with, the possible consequences of them agreeing or refusing the proposed use of the data

  • And then gives their consent.

LINGOs will ensure that data is collected within the boundaries defined in this policy. This applies to data that is collected in person, or by completing a form.

When collecting data, LINGOs will ensure that the Individual/Service User:

a) Clearly understands why the information is needed

b) Understands what it will be used for and what the consequences are should the Individual/Service User decide not to give consent to processing

c) As far as reasonably possible, grants explicit consent, either written or verbal for data to be processed

d) Is, as far as reasonably practicable, competent enough to give consent and has given so freely without any duress

e) Has received sufficient information on why their data is needed and how it will be used

5. Data Storage

Information and records relating to service users will be stored securely and will only be accessible to authorised staff and volunteers.

Information will be stored for only as long as it is needed or required statute and will be disposed of appropriately.

It is the responsibility of LINGOs to ensure all personal and company data is non-recoverable from any computer system previously used within the organisation, which has been passed on/sold to a third party.

6. Data access and accuracy

All individuals/Service Users have the right to access the information LINGOs holds about them. LINGOs will also take reasonable steps ensure that this information is kept up to date by asking data subjects whether there have been any changes.

In addition, LINGOs will ensure that:

  • It has a Data Protection Officer with specific responsibility for ensuring compliance with Data Protection
  • Everyone processing personal information understands that they are contractually responsible for following good data protection practice
  • Everyone processing personal information is appropriately trained to do so
  • Everyone processing personal information is appropriately supervised
  • It regularly assesses and evaluates its methods and performance in relation to handling personal information
  • All staff are aware that a breach of the rules and procedures identified in this policy may lead to disciplinary action being taken against them

This policy will be updated as necessary to reflect best practice in data management, security and control.

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