Data Protection

 Electoral Services – Privacy Notice

Derbyshire Dales District Council is committed to protecting your privacy when you use our services. This privacy notice explains some important information about how the Electoral Registration Officer and Returning Officer use your personal information.

Our contact details

The Electoral Registration Officer is James McLaughlin and the Returning Officer is Paul Wilson. Derbyshire Dales District Council, Town Hall, Bank Road, Matlock, Derbyshire, DE4 3NN.

The Electoral Registration Officer and the Returning Officer are registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) as a separate data controller to the Council. Registration reference Z6504224.

The District Council’s Data Protection Officer (DPO), Karen Henriksen is also the DPO for Electoral Services.

If you have any concerns or questions about how we look after your personal information please contact the Data Protection Officer:
• by phone on 01629 761245
• via email to
• by post to: Data Protection Officer, Derbyshire Dales District council, Town Hall, Bank Road, Matlock, Derbyshire, DE4 3NN.

What type of information we use?

We use information about citizens, Electors and Voters to enable us to carry out specific functions for which we are responsible and to provide you with a statutory service.

We keep records about potential and actual electors, voters, citizens, candidates and their agents, staff employed at an election and the people we need to pay. These may be written down (manual records), or kept on a computer (electronic records).

These records may include:

basic details about you, for example, name, address, date of birth and nationality,
contact details, for example telephone number and email address (if provided),
unique identifiers (such as your NI number),
Signatures provided by absent voters
• scanned application forms & dates of any letters of correspondence,
• notes about any relevant circumstances that you have told us,
• Scanned copies of any documentary evidence that you have provided in support of         your application to register.
• details and records about the service you have received,
• your previous or any redirected address
• The other occupants in your home
• Your correspondence address if you are entitled to be registered in the District but live     overseas or elsewhere.
• The address you have requested that we send your absent vote to if it is not your             registered address.
• Details of disabilities where you have provided these in support of an application for a     signature waiver or when requesting large print correspondence.
• Details provided as part of a long term or emergency proxy application, which may          include information regarding disability or illness, work or receipt of specific benefits.
• Sensitive information in support of an application for anonymous registration.
• If you are over 76 or under 16/17
• Whether you have chosen to opt out of the Open version of the Register

Information collected by the Returning Officer may include:

• The names, address, political affiliation and contact details of candidates.
• The names of electors who have subscribed candidate nomination forms.
• The names, address, political affiliation and contact details of agents.
• Information collected, as above, by the Electoral Registration Officer.
• The names, addresses, dates of birth, national insurance number, bank account,              contact details and tax status of staff employed to deliver the election.
• Payments made to and job history of current and previous election staff.

How is information collected?

Most of the personal information we process is provided to us directly by you for the purpose of registering and administering your right to vote.

We also receive personal information indirectly, from the following sources:

• Council Tax to validate your identify

What is the information used for?

Your records are used to help ensure that we provide you with the service that you need. We will, based on your nationality, include your name on the Electoral Register so that you are able to vote by your chosen method.The open register

What is the Electoral Register?

Using information received from the public, registration officers keep two registers – the electoral register and the open register (also known as the edited register).

The electoral register
The electoral register lists the names
and addresses of everyone who is
registered to vote in public elections.
The register is used for electoral purposes,
such as making sure only eligible people
can vote. It is also used for other limited
purposes specified in law, such as:
detecting crime (e.g. fraud)
calling people for jury service
checking credit applications.
The open register
The open register is an extract of the
electoral register, but is not used for
elections. It can be bought by any
person, company or organisation.
For example, it is used by businesses
and charities to confirm name and
address details. Your name and
address will be included in the open
register unless you ask for them to
be removed. Removing your details
from the open register does not
affect your right to vote.

If you are concerned that having your name or address on the register may affect your safety, there could be other options available to you. In certain circumstances, you can register without your name and address showing on the register. To find out more, please contact Electoral Services on 01629 761267. You can find their address on p1 of this form. You can find out more information about both registers and how they may be used at 

Information provided to the Electoral Registration Officer and Returning Officer is processed for the performance of the public tasks of maintaining the register of electors and administering elections, in order to comply with electoral law, in particular the Representation of the People Act 1983, Representation of the People Regulations 2001, the Electoral Administration Act 2006 and the Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013.

It is important that your records are accurate and up-to-date as they will help make sure that our staff are able to provide you with the help, advice or support you need.

If you do not provide us with this information then eligible citizens will not be able to vote and you may be breaking the law.

The Returning Officer is responsible for the conduct of elections. In administering an election, the Returning Officer will utilise information from the Electoral Register to issue poll cards, postal votes and to issue electoral registers and absent vote lists to each polling station. The Returning Officer also collects personal data about staff employed in delivering the election and about candidates and agents.

Your data will not be used for any other purpose unless we have agreed this with you. The only exception to this would be if we were required by law to provide your personal data.

The Returning Officer processes data in respect of electoral employees for the performance of a public task and in order to meet the Returning Officer’s legal obligations as an employer, including those set out in the Equality Act 2010, the Immigration Act 1971, the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006 and The Working Time Regulations 1998.

Your data protection rights

Under data protection law, you have rights including:

Your right of access - You have the right to ask us for copies of your personal information.

Your right to rectification - You have the right to ask us to rectify information you think is inaccurate. You also have the right to ask us to complete information you think is incomplete.

Your right to erasure - You have the right to ask us to erase your personal information in certain circumstances.

Your right to restriction of processing - You have the right to ask us to restrict the processing of your information in certain circumstances.

Your right to object to processing - You have the the right to object to the processing of your personal data in certain circumstances.

Your right to data portability - You have the right to ask that we transfer the information you gave us to another organisation, or to you, in certain circumstances.

You are not required to pay any charge for exercising your rights. If you make a request, we have one month to respond to you.

Please contact us by phone on 01629761396, via email to or by post to Data Protection Officer, Derbyshire Dales District council, Town Hall, Bank Road, Matlock, Derbyshire, DE4 3NN if you wish to make a request.

Who will receive your personal information?
All data provided to the Electoral Registration Officer or Returning Officer is processed on their behalf by the Electoral Services Team at Derbyshire Dales District Council.

Electoral Registration Officer

Some of the information that you provide to the ERO is held in Electoral Registers, which are maintained on behalf of the Electoral Registration Officer by Derbyshire Dales District Council’s Electoral Services Team.

To verify your identity, the data that you provide will be processed by the Individual Electoral Registration Digital Service managed by the Cabinet Office. 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 at the following link:

The full Electoral Register contains the names and addresses of registered electors, along with markers that indicate whether the elector has chosen to vote by post or proxy, whether the elector is over 76, the date of birth of any elector who will turn 18 during the lifetime of the register and whether you are a “special category elector” (living overseas, at no fixed address, prisoners on remand, patients in mental health hospitals, crown servants and serving members of the armed forces). Telephone numbers, email addresses and copies of scanned documents are neither included on the Electoral Register nor shared.

The full Electoral Register is published once a year on the 1st of December and is updated monthly outside of the Annual Canvass period. The people who are entitled to receive full or part copies of the Electoral Register are prescribed in the Representation of the People Regulations 2001 and include the following people and organisations:

• The British Library
• UK Statistics Authority
• The Electoral Commission
• The Boundary Commission for England
• The Jury Summoning Bureau
• Elected Representatives (Councillors, MP, MEP and Police and Crime Commissioner)
• Candidates standing for election
• Local and National Political Parties
• Parish and Community Councils
• The District Council
• Credit Reference Agencies
• National Fraud Initiative
• Government Departments
• Electoral Registration Officer and Returning Officer
• Electoral Registration Software Supplier (access for software support only).
A list is not exhaustive and further details can be found on the Electoral Commission website  

The Representation of the People Regulations 2001 restrict the use of the Electoral Register. It is a crime for anyone who has a copy of the Full Electoral Register to use the information for any other purpose or share the information contained within the Register unless there is a lawful reason for doing so.
In addition to this, anyone is entitled to inspect the full Electoral Register. There is a copy of the full Electoral Register held at Derbyshire Dales District Council, Town Hall, Bank Road, Matlock, Derbyshire. DE4 3NN for this purpose. Inspection of the full Electoral Register is under the supervision of Derbyshire Dales District Council staff, no extracts or copies can be taken (although hand written notes are allowed) and cannot be inspected for direct marketing purposes. Anyone failing to observe these conditions is committing a criminal offence, punishable by a penalty of up to £5,000.

The Open Register contains the same information as the Full Register, but contains only the details of those electors who have not opted out of their details being included. The Electoral Registration Officer is required by law to sell this version of the Register to any person or organisation upon request. Users of the Open Register include direct marketing companies, online directories, businesses and charities.

Electors can choose to opt out of the Open Register as part of their application to register, at the Annual Canvass or at any other time by contacting the Electoral Services Team. Your right to vote will not be affected by choosing not to appear on the Open Register.

Canvass Reform Data Test 2020 - The annual canvass is an integral part of the year round registration process. Changes to the way in which the annual canvass of electors is undertaken will take place in 2020 (subject to approval by Parliament). The aim of the reform is to make the process simpler and clearer for citizens and reduce costs whilst safeguarding the completeness and accuracy of the register.

In order to prepare for canvass reform, the Electoral Registration Officer is required to send your data (name, previous name, address, date of birth, email) to the Cabinet Office and Department of Work and Pensions as part of the Canvass Reform Data Test in January 2020. From July 2020, Canvass reform will introduce an annual mandatory national data step, alongside a discretionary local data matching step, at the start of each canvass.

The Returning Officer

Information provided to, including details contained on the Electoral Register, are shared with printers contracted to produce poll cards, postal votes and ballot papers. The Returning Officer also shares the details of staff employed in the conduct of elections with the payroll department of Derbyshire Dales District Council and HMRC.

The Returning Officer is required to make some documents containing information provided by candidates and agents available for inspection for periods of time; this can include nomination forms and expenses.

Transferring data to another country

Personal data which the council processes itself is held on UK servers. When using an external provider for processing e.g. storing customer records, it is our policy to use companies which have UK or EU based servers to receive the safeguards contained within UK data protection law and reciprocated across the European Union.

The Electoral Registration Officer is required by law to sell the Open Register to any person or organisation. Users of the Open Register include direct marketing companies, online directories, businesses and charities. These organisations could be based outside of the UK or EU.

Anyone who receives information from us has a legal duty to keep it confidential
We are required by law to report certain information to appropriate authorities – for example:

• where a formal court order has been issued.
• to law enforcement agencies for the prevention or detection of a crime
• to the Jury Central Summoning Bureau indicating those persons who are aged 76 or over and are no longer eligible for jury service

How long do we keep your personal information?

In order to provide you with this service, we rely on our legal obligation. See Policy The Electoral Registration Officer & 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. Retention schedule

How to complain
You can also complain to the ICO if you are unhappy with how we have used your data.
The ICO’s address:
Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Helpline number: 0303 123 1113