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Frequently asked questions: Open Council

Open Council questions

  • Question: Where is my data currently being stored?

  • Question: Who is my data being shared with?

  • Question: Why is my data being shared?

  • Question: How will this affect me?

  • Question: Who is the data controller and data processor for this?


    A Data Controller means a person who (either alone or jointly or in common with other persons) determines the purposes for which and the manner in which any personal data are, or are to be, processed.

    A government department sets up a database of information about every child in the country. It does this in partnership with local councils. Each council provides personal data about children in its area, and is responsible for the accuracy of the data it provides. It may also access personal data provided by other councils (and must comply with the data protection principles when using that data). The government department and the councils are data controllers in common in relation to the personal data on the database.

    A Data Processor in relation to personal data, means any person (other than an employee of the data controller) who processes the data on behalf of the data controller.

    A utilities company engages a company which operates call centres to provide many of its customer services functions on its behalf. The call centre staff have access to the utilities company’s customer records for the purpose of providing those services but may only use the information they contain for specific purposes and in accordance with strict contractual arrangements. The utilities company remains the data controller. The company that operates the call centre is a data processor.

    For current specific projects being funded by central government:

    National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) will be the data processor for the matched data provided by Government Departments.

    Government Departments will be the data processor for the matched data they provide to NIESR.

    Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) will be data controller for the matched data and anonymised dataset created from the matched data provided by Government Departments.

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