How and why we collect personal information
Barnet Homes collects personal information in a number of different ways including: customer agreements (tenancy, leaseholder, temporary accommodation); contracts (including employment contracts); forms; general customer contacts such as phone calls, letters and face to face conversations; recording of calls to our contact centre; CCTV images and website cookies.
As a provider of social housing we collect and process information to allow us to assess housing applications and provide housing, leasehold and other services to customers.
Any personal information we collect is processed in accordance with the requirements of the Data Protection Act (1998).
Who we collect personal information about
We collection and hold personal information about:
- Customers – including prospective, current and former customers who live in our properties or access our services and other support; have done in the past or may do in the future. This also includes family members and other associates. Where personal information relating to these individuals is provided we will assume this is done with their knowledge and consent.
- Employees – including prospective, current and former employees as well as board members, members of our Performance Advisory Group (PAG) and volunteers.
What personal information we collect
When you apply for housing at Barnet Homes we may request and hold information necessary to process your housing application including: references from other housing providers / private landlords, the Police, support workers, social workers, mental health workers and credit reference agencies.
As a tenant, leaseholder or user of Barnet Homes services we may also collect information such as: bank details, benefits information, contact details, employment information including income, and equalities information.
Any information required by relevant legislation.
What we use your personal information for
We use your personal information in a number of ways:
- To assess your housing application and provide housing, leasehold and other services including:
- Verification of your identity
- Allocating properties
- Managing tenancies, and resolving tenancy issues and disputes
- Receiving rent, service charges and other payments
- Providing repairs, maintenance and major works services
- Providing home ownership products and information
- Providing a private lettings service
- Offering assistance with debts and benefits
- Providing support services to enable customers to achieve their goals
- Identifying customers for the purposes of notifying them of proposed or planned changes to services which may affect them
- To allow us to communicate, promote and provide services appropriate to your needs, highlighting any free services or additional help available to you
- To contact you to discuss your account, including the use of automated calls
- Working with partners to deliver services.
- To process financial transactions including payments and benefits involving Barnet Homes, London Borough of Barnet and other government bodies e.g. Department for Work and Pensions
- To meet our legal requirements including: Health & Safety obligations and the prevention or detection of fraud or crime
- Where necessary to prevent individuals from harm or injury
- Where you have consented to the use of your personal information
- For insight purposes to allow us to analyse patterns and trends of service usage and satisfaction levels to enable us to make informed decisions in relation to services
- When otherwise permitted to under the Data Protection Act (1998). For further information please see the Information Commissioner’s website.
Sharing personal information
We routinely share personal information with third parties such as contractors to ensure repairs, adaptations, major works etc. can be completed. Other parties we share information with may include: London Borough of Barnet (Barnet Council), Capita (who provide services on behalf of Barnet Council), The Department for Work and Pensions, other Local Authorities, HM Revenue and Customs, credit reference agencies, landlords and their agents, health and social care organisations, debt recovery services, and other service providers / contractors and / or partner bodies.
We will also share information for the purposes of prevention of fraud including for the National Fraud Initiative.
In addition we also share personal information with third parties on an ad-hoc basis:
- Where the disclosure is necessary for:
- The prevention or detection of a crime
- The apprehension or prosecution of offenders
- The assessment or collection of any tax or duty or of any imposition of a similar nature.
- Where the disclosure is necessary for:
- The purpose of, or in connection with any legal proceedings (including prospective legal proceedings)
- The purpose of obtaining legal advice.
- To comply with a legal obligation e.g. a court order
- When contacted by Utility Companies or Council Tax departments to ensure billing details are correct.
When sharing personal information with other parties we strive to ensure your personal information is kept safe and we abide with our responsibilities under The Data Protection Act (1998) including:
- Seeking to ensure the minimum level of information is shared between parties
- Seeking to ensure that the third party has sufficient systems and procedures in place to prevent loss of personal data.
We will not sell, trade or rent your personal information to other third parties.
Accessing your personal information and making complaints
You are entitled to request a copy of the personal information we hold about you. This is known as a Subject Access request. In order for us to process a Subject Access Request we will require proof of your identity and address. A small administration fee (currently £10) is payable for these requests. Once your request has been received along with the proof of identity, address and the fee,we will provide your information within 40 calendar days.
You are also entitled to request us to stop processing your personal information. We will assess your request and seek to comply with it; however, there will be some situations where we will be unable to comply – for example due to a legal requirement or where processing of personal information is necessary in relation to providing a service. Where this is the case we will inform you of the reason for this.
To request access to, cease processing of your personal data, or to report inaccuracies please email TalkToUs@barnethomes.org or write to The Data Controller, Barnet Homes, 5th Floor, Barnet House, 1255 High Road, London, N20 0EJ.
Information on how to make a complaint to Barnet Homes about data protection can be found here. Further information on raising data protection concerns can be found on the Information Commissioner’s Website.
Keeping your personal information secure
We take our responsibilities to The Data Protection Act (1998) very seriously and as a result we have a number of policies, procedure and templates in place within Barnet Homes in relation to protecting personal data. In addition we ensure all employees complete new starter training and annual refresher training on data protection.
Updates to our privacy notices
From time to time this privacy notice will be updated to reflect changes to legislation and ways of working. We recommend revisiting this notice to ensure you are kept up to date.
Links to external websites