At Citizens Advice we collect and use your personal information to help solve your problems, improve our services and tackle wider issues in society that affect people’s lives.
We only ask for the information we need. We always let you decide what you’re comfortable telling us, explain why we need it and treat it as confidential.
When we record and use your personal information we:
- only access it when we have a good reason
- only share what is necessary and relevant
- don’t sell it to anyone
At times we might use or share your information without your permission. If we do, we’ll always make sure there’s a legal basis for it. This could include situations where we have to use or share your information:
- to comply with the law – for example, if a court orders us to share information. This is called ‘legal obligation’
- to protect someone’s life – for example, sharing information with a paramedic if a client was unwell at our office. This is called ‘vital interests’
- to carry out our legitimate aims and goals as a charity – for example, to create statistics for our national research. This is called ‘legitimate interests’
- for us to carry out a task where we’re meeting the aims of a public body in the public interest – for example, delivering a government or local authority service. This is called ‘public task’
- to carry out a contract we have with you – for example, if you’re an employee we might need to store your bank details so we can pay you. This is called ‘contract’
- to defend our legal rights – for example, sharing information with our legal advisors if there was a complaint that we gave the wrong advice
We handle and store your personal information in line with the law – including the General Data Protection Regulation and the Data Protection Act 2018.
You can check our main Citizens Advice policy for how we handle most of your personal information.
This page covers how we, as your local charity, handle your information locally in our offices.
How Citizens Advice Rushmoor collect your data
If you attend a face-to-face service, you will be asked to sign a consent form detailing how your information is used. Any special category information such ethnic origin or health problems require you to approve that being recorded.
If you are advised through a telephone only service, such as our helpline for The Brain Tumour Charity you will be asked to provide this consent verbally.
All information that is recorded is done so because:
- it is pertinent to progressing with your case
- the information helps us assess how we are performing in reaching out to all areas of the community we serve
- we are required to provide anonymised statistics to our funders to continue the funding of that service
What Citizens Advice Rushmoor ask for
How Citizens Advice Rushmoor use your information
Working on your behalf
When you give us authority to act on your behalf we will often need to share information with a third party.
For example, if you ask for our help with a dispute over your Council Tax reduction with Rushmoor Borough Council, then we may need to share some information you provide with them – but only with your prior consent on a signed authority to act form.
How Citizens Advice Rushmoor store your information
All details of your case are stored through the secure Casebook system provided by our national body Citizens Advice.
Occasionally we may retain some paper copies of documents pertinent to your case – such as part completed application forms – which are kept securely in locked cabinets. Any paper records and copies of documents you provide us with are scanned, then stored in Casebook and securely destroyed; either during or after your case is concluded.
In addition to Casebook, Citizens Advice Rushmoor utilises Office 365 for email communication and cloud storage, SharePoint – it is our policy that emails sent internally or to third parties do not contain client confidential information. Any information relating to you or any clients held in the cloud is anonymised. All emails we receive and send are automatically deleted after 2 years, if not before.
How Citizens Advice Rushmoor share your information
If, with your agreement, we conclude that your case can best handled by another agency – we will share your information with that agency only with your signed consent. Citizens Advice Rushmoor will only refer to agencies we have previously approved, and retain on our Approved Referral Agency List.
All information shared routinely with our funders is anonymised and is for statistical purposes only.
If you have been referred to our service by someone else, they will need your explicit consent for Citizens Advice to share information or communicate with them.
Contact Citizens Advice Rushmoor about your information
If you have any questions about how your information is collected or used, you can contact our office.
Telephone: 01252 333 618 or 01252 513 051
Email: aldershot@ or email@example.com
You can contact us to:
- find out what personal information we hold about you
- correct your information if it’s wrong, out of date or incomplete
- request we delete your information
- ask us to limit what we do with your data – for example, ask us not to share it if you haven’t asked us already
- ask us to give you a copy of the data we hold in a format you can use to transfer it to another service
- ask us stop using your information
We aim to process any of the above requests as soon as possible but you should allow up to one month.
Who’s responsible for looking after your personal information
The national Citizens Advice charity and your local Citizens Advice operate a system called Casebook to keep your personal information safe. This means they’re a ‘joint data controller’ for your personal information that’s stored in our Casebook system.
Each local Citizens Advice is an independent charity, and a member of the national Citizens Advice charity. The Citizens Advice membership agreement also requires that the use of your information complies with data protection law.