Your privacy is important to us. We aim for full transparency on how we gather, use, and share your personal information in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation.

If you have any concerns about how the Council is handling your personal data, these can be raised with the Council's Data Protection Officer:

  • In writing - Preston City Council, Lancaster Road, Preston, PR1 2RL
  • Telephone - 01772 906900
  • Email  - info@preston.gov.uk

We keep our privacy notice under regular review and we will place an updated version on this page.

This will help ensure that you are always aware of what information we collect and how we use it.

How Preston City Council uses your information

Preston City Council is committed to compliance with Data Protection legislation. Keeping your personal information accurate and secure is a vital part of providing efficient services to you.

The Council will only use the information it holds about you for the purpose you provided it. It will also only collect the minimum information necessary to fulfil that purpose.

When you provide information you will be told what it will be used for and whom it will be shared with. However, you need to be aware that the Council is required to share your information on occasion with other agencies to help reduce crime or investigate fraud. An example of this is in reducing Housing Benefit fraud and involves the Council sharing Council Tax, Housing Benefit, Electoral Registration and other licensing and registration data to ensure that claimants are not claiming illegally.

The Council also works closely with other Councils and community organisations and often needs to share information with them in order to deliver your services. However, the Council will not supply these organisations with your information unless it is satisfied that equal measures are in place to protect the information from unauthorised access.

The Council will also not supply your information to any organisation for marketing purposes without your prior consent.

Why we need it

In order to provide you with efficient and effective services Preston City Council needs to collect personal data.

The Council may also need to share your personal data with other service providers who are contracted to carry out services on their behalf. These providers are obliged to keep your personal details secure and use them only to fulfil your service request.

The Council will process the information you provide in a manner that is compatible with the General Data Protection Regulation and the Data Protection Act and in particular aims to comply with the principles within the Regulation.

Preston City Council will use information about you for the provision of services and specifically for the following:-

  • for all law enforcement, regulation and licensing, criminal prosecutions and court proceedings which the Council is obliged to undertake
  • all financial transactions to and from the Council including payments, grants and benefits. Where monies are due or outstanding the Council reserves the right to use all the available information at its disposal to protect public funds.

Your information will only be held as long as necessary and will be disposed of in a secure manner when no longer needed. The periods for retention of information are specified in the Council's Retention Schedule.

Council services Privacy Notices

View service specific Privacy Notices

What we do with it

Your personal information will be treated as confidential but it may be shared with other Council services in order to ensure our records are accurate and up-to-date, and to improve the standard of the services we deliver. We will only use your information in ways which are permitted by the General Data Protection Regulation and the current UK Data Protection law.

This authority has a duty to protect the public funds it administers, and may use information held about you for all lawful purposes, including but not limited to the prevention and detection of crime including fraud and money laundering.

The Council may also use your information for the purpose of performing any of its statutory enforcement duties. It will make any disclosures required by law and may also share your information with other bodies responsible for detecting/preventing crime including fraud or auditing/administering public funds.

For privacy notices relating to specific services please see the document section on this page.

There is also information about your computer hardware and software that is automatically collected by Preston City Council. This information can include: your IP address, browser type, domain names, access times and referring Web site addresses. This information is used by Preston City Council for the operation of the service, to maintain quality of the service, and to provide general statistics regarding use of the Preston City Council Web site.

Sharing information with other partner agencies

The Council has a responsibility to promote social wellbeing and to work with other Councils and partner agencies such as the Police, Fire and Rescue Service, the voluntary services and the Health Service in order to preserve life, reduce accidents, reduce crime and disorder and improve health. To promote this social wellbeing the Council may need to share your personal and sensitive information with other Councils and partner agencies.

The sharing of special category personal data where your consent has not been directly secured will only occur in order to promote community wellbeing for example in saving life, reducing crime, reducing accidents and improving health and will be on a "need to know" basis.

Sharing information with the Cabinet Office

Preston City Council is required by law to protect the public funds it administers. It may share information provided to it with other bodies responsible for auditing or administering public funds, in order to prevent and detect fraud.

The Cabinet Office is responsible for carrying out data matching exercises.

Data matching involves comparing computer records held by one body against other computer records held by the same or another body to see how far they match. This is usually personal information.

Computerised data matching allows potentially fraudulent claims and payments to be identified.

Where a match is found it indicates that there is an inconsistency which requires further investigation. No assumption can be made as to whether there is fraud, error or other explanation until an investigation is carried out.

We participate in the Cabinet Office's National Fraud Initiative; a data matching exercise to assist in the prevention and detection of fraud. We are required to provide particular sets of data to the Minister for the Cabinet Office for matching for each exercise detailed on the National Fraud Initiative page.

The use of data by the Cabinet Office in a data matching exercise is carried out with statutory authority under Part 6 of the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014. It does not require the consent of the individuals concerned.

Data matching by the Cabinet Office is subject to a Code of Practice.

View further information on the Cabinet Office's legal powers and the reasons why it matches particular information.

What are your rights

You have the right to:

  • request a copy of your information (known as a subject access request)
  • request rectification or erasure of your information,
  • request a restriction on the processing of your information, and,
  • object to processing of your information,
  • complain to the Information Commissioner's Office about the way the Council processes your information.
  • set your browser to remove or reject cookies before using Preston City Council website

If you require further information about the use of your data or would like to exercise any of the above rights, please contact the Data Protection Officer at info@preston.gov.uk or call 01772 906900.

The right to erase your details

The right to erasure is not absolute and only applies in certain circumstances.

The right to erasure does not apply if processing is necessary for one of the following reasons:

  • to exercise the right of freedom of expression and information;
  • to comply with a legal obligation;
  • for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority;
  • for archiving purposes in the public interest, scientific research historical research or statistical purposes where erasure is likely to render impossible or seriously impair the achievement of that processing; or
  • for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims.

Please note that in most cases Preston City Council will be processing your data for the performance of a "public task", for example, collecting Council Tax and will not be able to erase your details.

The Council must act upon any request without undue delay and at least within one month of receipt.

Transferring information overseas

In certain circumstances we may transfer your information to organisations in other countries on the basis that anyone to whom we pass it protects it in the same way we would and in accordance with applicable laws.

How long we keep your information

We will keep you information for as long as it is required by us or other regulatory bodies in order to comply with legal and regulatory requirements or for other operational reasons. In most cases this will be a minimum of six years.

Website information

Preston City Council encourages you to review the privacy statements of Web sites you choose to link to from Preston City Council so that you can understand how those Web sites collect, use and share your information.

Preston City Council is not responsible for the privacy statements or other content on Web sites outside of the Preston City Council family of Web sites.

Use of Cookies

The Preston City Council Web site use "cookies" to help you personalise your online experience.

A cookie is a text file that is placed on your hard disk by a Website via your web browser. Cookies cannot be used to run programs or deliver viruses to your computer. Cookies are uniquely assigned to you, and can only be read by a web server in the domain that issued the cookie to you.

For more information please refer to our disclaimer page