COVID-19 privacy notice

This privacy notice explains how Colchester City Council (as a Data Controller) will collect, use and protect personal data specifically with regard to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. This Privacy Notice should be read in conjunction with Colchester City Council’s Privacy Policy.

The Council already holds data regarding tenants, employees and stakeholders. You may have provided this information for a specific reason and normally the Council would seek to inform you that the data provided would be being used for a different purpose. Due to the rapidly emerging situation regarding the current pandemic this will not always be possible. If we already hold information regarding vulnerability as defined in the current guidance from the Government and Public Health England, we may share this for emergency planning purposes or to protect your vital interests by sharing with services both inside and outside the Council.

We may in this current crisis need to ask you for personal information including sensitive personal information, for example your age or if you have any underlying illnesses or are vulnerable, that you have not already supplied. This is so the Council can assist and prioritise its services.

The Council is publishing updates from official sources on our website.

Your personal data

Personal data relates to a living individual who can be identified from that data. Identification can be by the information alone or in conjunction with any other information in the data controller’s possession or likely to come into such possession.

Some of your personal data is classed as 'special categories of personal data' because it is the information that is considered to be more sensitive and therefore requires more protection.

Legal basis for processing your personal data

How we are processing your personal data will determine the legal basis for processing. The legal bases for processing by the council as a public authority will be where:

  1. disclosure is in the vital interests of yourself or another person (Article 6(1)(d) and 9(2)(c) GDPR)
  2. disclosure is necessary for compliance with a legal obligation Article 6(1)(c) – under the Recipient COPI Notice
  3. it is necessary for the reasons of substantial public interest Article 9(2)(g)
  4. it is in the interest of public health Article 9(2)(i)

Sharing your personal data

In this current pandemic we may share your information with other public authorities, emergency services, and other stakeholders as necessary and proportionate to do. This will include sharing business contact details with the Health & Safety Executive for the purpose of completion of spot checks by HSE on compliance with Covid-19 measures currently in place in the city.

The test and trace system, both nationally and locally, rely on the sharing of person identifiable data.

Find out more on the NHS Test and Trace website.

How long we keep your personal data

We will only keep your personal data for as long as is necessary for the purpose for which we are processing it, unless we have a legitimate reason for keeping it, for example, any legal requirement to keep the data for a set time period. However, where possible we will anonymise this data so that you cannot be identified.

Where we do not need to continue to process your personal data, it will be securely destroyed.

How we protect and store your personal data

We take the confidentiality of personal information very seriously and use recognised security and access controls to protect your information from unauthorised access, loss, misuse, alteration or corruption. We have procedures and processes in place to ensure that your personal information is managed appropriately.

Your information may be held outside of the UK. Where this is the case, we ensure that additional measures are in place to protect your data and to ensure that we continue to comply with data protection requirements.

We use cloud providers and online application providers to help us run our business. Therefore the use of some of our systems may include the transfer of your personal data to other countries. Your data will only be transferred to other countries which have adequate provision in place to protect personal data to an equivalent level as personal data held in the UK.

Your rights and your personal data

Unless subject to an exemption under the GDPR, you have the following rights with respect to your personal data to:

  1. request a copy of your personal data which we hold about you
  2. request that we correct any personal data if it is found to be inaccurate or out of date
  3. request that your personal data be erased where it is no longer necessary for us to retain such data
  4. lodge a complaint with the Information Commissioner's Office

You can access the personal information that we hold about you (number 1 above) by submitting a subject access request to the council. This request must be in writing and clearly specify the information you require.

If you would like to make a request with regard to the processing of your personal data please contact the Data Protection Officer on the details provided below. However, it is not always possible for requests to delete information to be fulfilled and the Data Protection Officer can provide you with more information on request.

Complaints or queries

We try to meet the highest standards when collecting and using personal information. For this reason, we take any complaints we receive about this very seriously. We encourage people to bring it to our attention if they think that our collection or use of information is unfair, misleading or inappropriate. We would also welcome any suggestions for improving our procedures.

If you have any concerns, questions or comments please email the council’s Data Protection Officer.

If having exhausted the complaint process you are not content that your request or review has been dealt with correctly, you can appeal to the Information Commissioner’s Office to investigate the matter further by writing to:

Information Commissioner's Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF

Contact information

Data Protection Officer, Colchester City Council, Rowan House, 33 Sheepen Road, Colchester, CO3 3WG


Changes to this privacy notice

We keep this privacy notice under regular review and if we make any changes, we will publish the updated version on our website

Page last reviewed: 24 January 2022


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