Cognita Projects is part of the Rethink Group and processes personal data in relation to its own staff, work-seekers and individual client contacts. It is vitally important that we abide by the principles of the Data Protection Act 1998 set out below. Rethink Group holds data on individuals for the following general purposes:
- Staff Administration
- Advertising, marketing and public relations
- Accounts and records
- Administration and processing of work-seekers personal data for the purposes of work-finding services
- We do not store credit card details nor do we share customer financial details with any 3rd parties
The Data Protection Act 1998 requires Rethink Group as data controller to process data in accordance with the principles of data protection. These require that data shall be:
- Fairly and lawfully processed
- Processed for limited purposes
- Adequate, relevant and not excessive
- Not kept longer than necessary
- Processed in accordance with the data subjects rights
- Kept securely
- Not transferred to countries outside the European Economic Area without adequate protection.
Personal data means data, which relates to a living individual who can be identified from the data or from the data together with other information, which is in the possession of, or is likely to come into possession of, Rethink Group. Processing means obtaining, recording or holding the data or carrying out any operation or set of operations on the data. It includes organising, adapting and amending the data, retrieval, consultation and use of the data, disclosing and erasure or destruction of the data. It is difficult to envisage any activity involving data, which does not amount to processing. It applies to any processing that is carried out on computer including any type of computer however described, main frame, desktop, laptop, ipad etc. Data should be reviewed on a regular basis to ensure that it is accurate, relevant and up to date and those people listed in the appendix shall be responsible for doing this. Data may only be processed with the consent of the person whose data is held. Therefore if they have not consented to their personal details being passed to a third party this may constitute a breach of the Data Protection Act 1998.
Data in respect of the following is “sensitive personal data” and any information held on any of these matters MUST not be passed on to any third party without the express written consent of the individual:
- Any offence committed or alleged to be committed by them
- Proceedings in relation to any offence and any sentence passed
- Physical or mental health or condition
- Racial or ethnic origins
- Sexual life
- Political opinions
- Religious beliefs or beliefs of a similar nature
- Whether someone is a member of a trade union
From a security point of view, only those staff listed in the appendix should be permitted to add, amend or delete data from the database. However all staff are responsible for notifying those listed where information is known to be old, inaccurate or out of date. In addition all employees should ensure that adequate security measures are in place. For example:
- Computer screens should not be left open by individuals who have access to personal data
- Passwords should not be disclosed
- Email should be used with care
- Personnel files and other personal data should be stored in a place in which any unauthorised
- attempts to access them will be noticed. They should not be removed from their usual place of
- storage without good reason
- Personnel files should always be locked away when not in use and when in use should not be
- left unattended
- Any breaches of security should be treated as a disciplinary issue
- Care should be taken when sending personal data in internal or external mail
Destroying or disposing of personal data counts as processing. Therefore care should be taken in the disposal of any personal data to ensure that it is appropriate. For example, it would have been more appropriate to shred sensitive data than merely to dispose of it in the dustbin It should be remembered that the incorrect processing of personal data e.g. sending an individual’s details to the wrong person; allowing unauthorised persons access to personal data; or sending information out for purposes for which the individual did not give their consent, may give rise to a breach of contract and/or negligence leading to a claim against Rethink Group for damages from an employee, work-seeker or client contact.
A failure to observe the contents of this policy will be treated as a disciplinary offence. Data subjects, i.e. those on whom personal data is held, are entitled to obtain access to their data on request and after payment of a fee. All requests to access data by data subjects i.e. staff, members, customers or clients, suppliers, students etc should be referred to Marc Hughes at Rethink Group, 19 Spring Gardens, Manchester, M2 1FB or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Any requests for access to a reference given by a third party must be referred to Marc Hughes and should be treated with caution even if the reference was given in relation to the individual making the request. This is because the person writing the reference also has a right to have their personal details handled in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998, and not disclosed without their consent.
Therefore when taking up references an individual should always be asked to give their consent to the disclosure of the reference to a third party and/or the individual who is the subject of the reference if they make a subject access request. However if they do not consent then consideration should be given as to whether the details of the individual giving the reference can be deleted so that they cannot be identified from the content of the letter. If so the reference may be disclosed in an anonymised form. Finally it should be remembered that all individuals have the following rights under the Human Rights Act 1998 and in dealing with personal data these should be respected at all times:
- Right to respect for private and family life [Article 8]
- Freedom of thought, conscience and religion [Article 9]
- Freedom of expression [Article 10]
- Freedom of assembly and association [Article 11]
- Freedom from discrimination [Article 14]
A cookie is a file containing an identifier (a string of letters and numbers) that is sent by a web server to a web browser, and stored by the browser. The identifier is then sent back to the server each time the browser requests a page from the server. Cookies can be used by web servers to identity and track users as they navigate different pages on a website and to identify users returning to a website. Cookies may be either “persistent” cookies or “session” cookies. A persistent cookie consists of a text file sent by a web server to a web browser, which will be stored by the browser and will remain valid until its set expiry date (unless deleted by the user before the expiry date). A session cookie, on the other hand, will expire at the end of the user session, when the web browser is closed.
Cookies do not contain any information that personally identifies you, but personal information that we store about you may be linked, by us, to the information stored in and obtained from cookies. We may use the information we obtain from your use of our cookies for the following purposes:
- to recognise your computer when you visit our website
- to track you as you navigate our website
- to improve the website’s usability
- to analyse the use of our website
- in the administration of this website
- to prevent fraud and improve the security of the website
- to personalise our website for you
Third party cookies
Most browsers allow you to refuse to accept cookies. For example:
- in Internet Explorer you can refuse all cookies by clicking “Tools”, “Internet Options”, “Privacy”, and selecting “Block all cookies” using the sliding selector;
- in Firefox you can block all cookies by clicking “Tools”, “Options”, and un-checking “Accept cookies from sites” in the “Privacy” box.
Blocking all cookies will, however, have a negative impact upon the usability of many websites. Deleting cookies You can also delete cookies already stored on your computer:
- in Internet Explorer, you must manually delete cookie files (you can find instructions for doing so at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/278835
- in Firefox, you can delete cookies by, first ensuring that cookies are to be deleted when you “clear private data” (this setting can be changed by clicking “Tools”, “Options” and “Settings” in the “Private Data” box) and then clicking “Clear private data” in the “Tools” menu.
Doing this may have a negative impact on the usability of many websites.
If you have any questions in relation to this document please email email@example.com.