What we do with data we collect about you, and your rights.
Why we are collecting your data?
The Electoral Registration Officer and Returning Officer is a data controller and collects the personal data you provide for the purpose of registering your right to vote. You need to be registered to be able to vote in any election or referendum for which you're eligible. We've a duty to maintain a complete and accurate register throughout the year. We'll only collect the personal data we need from you in order to do this.
What is the legal basis for collecting this data?
The collection of your personal data is a task carried out in the public interest to ensure you are registered and able to vote in any election, or referendum for which you are eligible, and to comply with the Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013 and Representation of the People Regulations 2001. The law makes it compulsory to provide information to an Electoral Registration Officer for inclusion in the full register. To meet our statutory obligations, we keep records about potential and actual electors, voters, citizens, candidates and their agents, as well as staff employed at the annual canvass and elections. These may be written down or kept on a computer.
These records may include:
- Your name, address, nationality and date of birth
- Unique identifiers (such as National Insurance number)
- Signatures for absent vote checking
- Scanned application forms, documentary evidence, dates of any letters of correspondence
- Notes about any relevant circumstances that you've told us
- Your previous or any redirected address
- The other occupants in your home
- If you're over 76 or under 16/17
- Whether you've chosen to opt out of the open version of the register
The data you provide will be processed by the Individual Electoral Registration Digital Service managed by the cabinet office in order to verify your identity. As part of this process your data will be shared with the Department of Work and Pensions and the cabinet office suppliers that are data processors for the Individual Electoral Registration Digital Service. You can find more information about this on the GOV.UK website.
What about the Voter Authority certificate?
Find out how we will process your personal data provided as part of the Voter Authority certificate application.
Who your information will be shared with
The information you provide is held in electoral registers which are managed by electoral registration officers who, using information received, keep two registers – the full electoral register and the open (edited) register.
The full register is published once a year and is updated every month. In accordance with the specific legislative provisions which permit its supply and restrict its use. It may only be supplied to the following people and organisations:
- British Library
- National Library for Wales
- National Library for Scotland
- UK Statistics Authority
- Electoral Commission
- Boundary Commission for England
- Jury Summoning Bureau
- Elected representatives (MP, local councillors, parish councillors, combined authority mayor, local authority mayor, Member of the Senedd, Member of Scottish Parliament)
- Police and crime commissioner
- Candidates standing for elections
- Local and national political parties
- The council
- Parish and community councils
- Police forces, National Crime Agency
- Public library or local authority archive services
- Government departments or bodies
- Credit reference agencies
- National Fraud Initiative
- Electoral registration officers and returning officers
We also have to disclose (share) your information with our software providers and contracted printers, this is subject to appropriate safeguards.
It is a criminal offence for anyone who has a copy of the full register to supply, disclose or otherwise make use of information in this register for any purpose other than that set out in relevant legislation. Anyone can inspect the full electoral register. Inspection of the register will be under supervision. Those inspecting it may take extracts from the register, but only by handwritten notes. Information taken must not be used for direct marketing purposes, in accordance with data protection legislation, unless it has been published in the open version.
Anyone who fails to observe these conditions is committing a criminal offence and may incur a penalty of up to £5,000.
The open register contains the same information as the full register but is not used for elections or referendums. It is updated and published every month and may be sold to any person, organisation or company for a wide range of purposes. It's used by businesses and charities for checking names and address details; users of the register include direct marketing firms and also online directory firms.
You can choose whether or not to have your personal details included in the open version of the register; however, they'll be included unless you ask for them to be removed. Removing your details from the open register won't affect your right to vote.
How long we will hold your data for
The Electoral Registration officer and returning officer are obliged to process your personal data in relation to preparing for and conducting elections. Your details will be kept and updated in accordance with our legal obligations and in line with statutory retention periods.
You're entitled to request a copy of any information that we hold about you. Any such requests must be made in writing. If the information we hold about you is inaccurate you have a right to have this corrected and you have a right to request completion of incomplete data.
You have the right to request the erasure of your personal data in certain circumstances (‘right to be forgotten’). You have the right to request that we stop, or restrict the processing of your personal data, in certain circumstances. Where possible we'll seek to comply with your request, but we may be required to hold or process information to comply with a legal requirement.
If you are dissatisfied with how the Electoral Registration Officer and Returning Officer have used your personal information you have a right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Whether provision of data is part of a statutory or contractual requirement the Electoral Registration Officer and Returning Officer is required to keep a record of your personal data in order to comply with the Representation of the Peoples Act 1983, Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013, Representation of the People Regulations 2001 and Electoral Registration (Disclosure of Electoral Registers) Regulations 2013.
Electoral Registration Officer and Returning Officer ICO registration
The Electoral Registration Officer and Returning Officer is registered with the Information Commissioners Office.
Contact details of the Data Protection Officer
Further information on how to contact Shropshire Council's Data Protection Officer in on the Shropshire Council website.