Sync Living is committed to a policy of protecting the rights and privacy of individuals, including customers, staff and others, in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) May 2018.
The new regulatory environment demands higher transparency and accountability in how companies manage and use personal data. It also accords new and stronger rights for individuals to understand and control that use.
Sync Living needs to process certain information about its customers and other individuals with whom it has a relationship for various purposes such as, but not limited to:
- The recruitment and payment of staff
- Communicating special offers
- Communicating exciting new product alerts
- Collecting payment
To comply with various legal obligations, including the obligations imposed on it by the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Sync Living must ensure that all this information about individuals is collected and used fairly, stored safely and securely, and not disclosed to any third party unlawfully.
This policy applies to all staff and customers of Sync Living. Any breach of this policy or of the regulation itself will be considered an offence and the company’s disciplinary procedures will be invoked.
As a matter of best practice, other agencies and individuals working with Sync Living who have access to personal information, will be expected to read and comply with this policy. It is expected that departments who are responsible for dealing with external bodies will take the responsibility for ensuring that such bodies sign a contract which among other things will include an agreement to abide by this policy.
This policy will be updated as necessary to reflect best practice in data management, security and control and to ensure compliance with any changes or amendments to the GDPR and other relevant legislation.
General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
This piece of legislation comes in to force on the 25th May 2018. The GDPR regulates the processing of personal data, and protects the rights and privacy of all living individuals (including children), for example by giving all individuals who are the subject of personal data a general right of access to the personal data which relates to them. Individuals can exercise the right to gain access to their information by means of a ‘subject access request’. Personal data is information relating to an individual and may be in hard or soft copy and may include facts or opinions about a person.
Responsibilities under GDPR
Sync Living will be the ‘data controller’ under the terms of the legislation – this means it is ultimately responsible for controlling the use and processing of the personal data. The company appoints a Data Protection Officer (DPO), currently, a Director who is available to address any concerns regarding the data held by the company and how it is processed, held and used.
The Leadership Team is responsible for all day-to-day data protection matters and will be responsible for ensuring that all members of staff and relevant individuals abide by this policy, and for developing and encouraging good information handling within the company.
Compliance with the legislation is the personal responsibility of all staff members who process personal information.
Individuals who provide personal data to the company are responsible for ensuring that the information is accurate and up-to-date.
Data Protection Principles
The legislation places a responsibility on every data controller to process any personal data in accordance with the eight principles.
- Process personal data fairly and lawfully
Sync Living will make all reasonable efforts to ensure that individuals who are the focus of the personal data (data subjects) are informed of the identity of the data controller, the purposes of the processing, any disclosures to third parties that are envisaged; given an indication of the period for which the data will be kept, and any other information which may be relevant.
- Process the data for the specific and lawful purpose for which it collected that data and not further process the data in a manner incompatible with this purpose.
Sync Living will ensure that the reason for which it collected the data originally is the only reason for which it processes those data, unless the individual is informed of any additional processing before it takes place.
- Ensure that the data is adequate, relevant and not excessive in relation to the purpose for which it is processed.
Sync Living will not seek to collect any personal data which is not strictly necessary for the purpose for which it was obtained. Forms for collecting data will always be drafted with this mind. If any irrelevant data are given by individuals, they will be destroyed immediately.
- Keep personal data accurate and, where necessary, up to date.
Sync Living will review and update all data on a regular basis. It is the responsibility of the individuals giving their personal data to ensure that this is accurate, and each individual should notify the company if, for example, a change in circumstances means that the data needs to be updated. It is the responsibility of the company to ensure that any notification regarding the change is noted and acted on.
- Only keep personal data for as long as is necessary.
Sync Living undertakes not to retain personal data for longer than is necessary to ensure compliance with the legislation and any other statutory requirements. This means Sync Living will undertake a regular review of the information held and implement a weeding process. Sync Living will dispose of any personal data in a way that protects the rights and privacy of the individual concerned (e.g. secure electronic deletion, shredding and disposal of hard copy files as confidential waste). A log will be kept of the records destroyed.
- Process personal data in accordance with the rights of the data subject under the legislation.
Individuals have various rights under the legislation including a right to:
- be told the nature of the information the company holds and any parties to whom this may be disclosed.
- prevent processing likely to cause damage or distress.
- prevent processing for purposes of direct marketing.
- be informed about the mechanics of any automated decision-making process that will significantly affect them.
- not have significant decisions that will affect them taken solely by an automated process.
- take action to rectify, block, erase or destroy inaccurate data.
- request that the Office of the Information Commissioner assess whether any provision of the Act has been contravened. Sync Living will only process personal data in accordance with individuals’ rights.
- Put appropriate technical and organisational measures in place against unauthorised or unlawful processing of personal data, and against accidental loss or destruction of data.
All members of staff are responsible for ensuring that any personal data which they hold is kept securely and not disclosed to any unauthorised third parties. Sync living will ensure that all personal data is accessible only to those who have a valid reason for using it. Sync Living will have in place appropriate security measures e.g. ensuring that hard copy personal data is kept in lockable filing cabinets/cupboards with controlled access (with the keys then held securely in a key cabinet with controlled access):
- keeping all personal data in a lockable cabinet with key-controlled access.
- password protecting personal data held electronically.
- archiving personal data which are then kept securely (lockable cabinet).
- ensuring that PC screens are not left unattended without a password protected screen-saver being used.
In addition, Sync Living will put in place appropriate measures for the deletion of personal data – manual records will be shredded or disposed of as ‘confidential waste’ and appropriate contract terms will be put in place with any third parties undertaking this work. Hard drives of redundant PCs will be wiped clean before disposal or if that is not possible, destroyed physically. A log will be kept off the records destroyed.
This policy also applies to staff and customers who process personal data ‘off-site’, e.g. when working at home, and in circumstances, additional care must be taken regarding the security of the data.
- Ensure that no personal data is transferred to a country or a territory outside the European Economic Area (EEA) unless that country or territory ensures an adequate level of protection for the rights and freedoms of data subjects in relation to the processing of personal data.
Sync Living will not transfer data to such territories without the explicit consent of the individual. This also applies to publishing information on the Internet – because the transfer of data can include placing data on a website that can be accessed from outside the EEA so Sync Living will always seek the consent of individuals before placing any personal data on its website. If the company collects personal data in any form via its website, it will provide a clear and detailed privacy statement prominently on the website, and wherever else personal data is collected.
Consent as a basis for processing
Although it is not always necessary to gain consent from individuals before processing their data, it is often the best way to ensure that data is collected and processed in an open and transparent manner.
Consent is especially important when Sync Living is processing any sensitive data, as defined by the legislation.
Sync Living understands consent to mean that the individual has been fully informed of the intended processing and has signified their agreement whilst being of a sound mind and without having any undue influence exerted upon them. Consent obtained on the basis of misleading information will not be a valid basis for processing. Consent cannot be inferred from the non-response to a communication.
Sync Living will ensure that if the individual does not give his/her consent for the processing, and there is no other lawful basis on which to process the data, then steps will be taken to ensure that processing of that data does not take place.
Subject Access Rights (SARs)
Individuals have a right to access any personal data relating to them which are held by the company. Any individual wishing to exercise this right should apply in writing to the Managing Director (MD). Any member of staff receiving a SAR should forward this to the MD.
Disclosure of Data
Only disclosures which have been notified under the company’s data protection must be made.
Sync Living undertakes not to disclose personal data to unauthorized third parties, including family members, friends, government bodies. Legitimate disclosures may occur in the following instances:
- the individual has given their consent to the disclosure.
- the disclosure is required for the performance of a contract.
There are other instances when the legislation permits disclosure without the consent of the individual.
Publication of Company Information
Sync Living publishes various items which will include some personal data, e.g.
- internal telephone directory.
- event information.
- photos and information in marketing materials.
It may be that in some circumstances an individual wishes their data processed for such reasons to be kept confidential, or restricted company access only. Therefore it is Sync Living policy to offer an opportunity to opt-out of the publication of such when collecting the information.
Procedure for review
This policy will be updated as necessary to reflect best practice or future amendments made to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) May 2018 and Data Protection Act 1998.
For help or advice on any data protection or freedom of information issues, please do not hesitate to contact:
The Data Protection Officer (DPO): Gary Martin, Director.