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Protection of personal information is especially important and anyone who handles or processes personal information should be aware of the University Data Protection Policy. Copies of the Data Protection Handbook, which gives a brief overview of the Data Protection Act 1998, are available from the Information Compliance team.
Remember: a request for personal data doesn’t have to mention subject
access or the Data Protection Act. It
just has to be a request in writing (email will do). If you get such a request – alert the
Information Compliance Officer (firstname.lastname@example.org) immediately.
1. Under the Data Protection Act 1998, all
individuals have a right to see the personal data that we hold on them.
2. This extends to emails, letters, memos,
minutes and spreadsheets etc – in short any recorded information from which
they can be identified. Even audio,
video and CCTV recordings can be requested by an individual.
3. Everything that the university holds on an
individual can be, and frequently is, requested. By law we have to release the data. This
includes opinions and intentions towards that individual. For example if you wrote in an email “I
believe that person x is a nuisance and should be sacked”, we would probably
release this in its entirety.
in most cases have the automatic right to view all of their own data, however
they have no automatic right to see third party data. We may seek consent to release third party
data, but there are other factors we take into consideration when making such a
Generally we release the majority of data
when dealing with requests. There are some exemptions, but these are very
specific and infrequently applied.
– remember that whatever you write about an individual may be disclosed to them
– make sure that ALL your communications about others are appropriate and
– make sure you recognise when you receive a request for data and DON’T ignore
asked for data by the University DO provide it:
DON’T conceal or destroy it