Customer Services & Business Support - Privacy Notice

What this Privacy Notice covers

Adur & Worthing Councils are the data controllers (referred to in this notice as 'we' or 'us') of your personal data for the purposes of applicable data protection legislation in relation to the administration and management of the following:

The Customer Services and business support team are responsible for answering incoming telephone calls to the council, making outbound calls to customers to provide advice and support, providing face to face customer service advice at Portland House and the Shoreham Centre and for responding to customer enquiries sent to certain council email addresses. We aim to resolve as many queries as we can at first contact, but we will sometimes need to transfer your call to another council department, or arrange for you to have a face- to-face appointment with colleagues from another department.

We also deal with enquiries made to particular council email addresses. Again, we respond to some emails direct, but will redirect more specialist or complex enquiries to other relevant council teams.

Our team also deals with complaints, compliments and other customer feedback sent to the council, and requests submitted under the Freedom of Information Act or the Environmental Information Regulations.

We have identified that in order to continuously improve our level of customer service, and to fulfil our Duty of Best Value to residents, visitors and businesses, it is in the public interest for us to use your contact details to send you a customer feedback request or a customer satisfaction survey. These allow you to give feedback on an anonymous basis and your comments will not be traced back to you or your email address.

We also receive information from customers who use the 'Tell us once' service provided by the Department of Work and Pensions. See also the Tell Us Once privacy statement published by the DWP:

The Councils' Data Protection Officer can be contacted at:

  • Adur & Worthing Councils
    Worthing Town Hall
    Chapel Road
    West Sussex
    BN11 1HA

In relation to your personal data we are committed to collecting, using and protecting it appropriately. This privacy notice explains:

  • How and why we collect and use your personal data
  • The type of personal data that we collect
  • When and why we will share personal data with other organisations
  • The rights and choices you have in relation to the personal data that we hold about you

Why we need your personal data

We need your personal data in order to process your requests for services provided by the Council, eg to answer queries about your council tax bill, to order you a green bin or to respond to planning queries. In some cases you will need to provide your information in order for a service to be carried out - eg we would need your address if you were reporting that your bin collection has been missed.

We also need your data to offer you support (eg if we identify that we can signpost you to other help that you may be entitled to from council teams or external organisations).

We will register or update your details on our council systems to enable us to process your request.

We provide services for our local community and the people who live in them. Customer service and Business support teams provide information on and answer enquiries relating to a variety of council services, and the legal basis that allows us to use your data include:

  • Legal obligations - using the information to comply with a common law or statutory obligation
  • Public Task - to exercise 'official authority' and powers set out in law, or to perform a specific task in the public interest that is set out in law - eg to administer Council tax, or to ensure that waste is collected/noise nuisance is reported etc.

What we collect and how it is used

We collect the following personal information:

  • When you visit or speak to us on the phone, we will ask you for personal information about you; eg your name and address. We will also need to process enquiry details and, depending on what you are asking about, we may also need to ask for identifying details (date of birth, reference numbers) and for information about your employment status, family circumstances and living arrangements. If you are calling to make a payment for a council service, we will also ask for payment card details.

However you provide your information to us, we will enter or update it on relevant council systems.

When you call our Contact Centre we may record your call to help us monitor performance and improve customer interactions with the Council, and to assist us with training customer service advisers. Call recording can include any incoming or outgoing telephone calls handled by the Contact Centre, but if payment is required, your payment details will not be included in any recording. Any conversations that take place following the transfer of a phone call to another Council department will not be recorded. Call recordings are destroyed after three months.

We do not collect any special category of personal data.

We may share personal data with other departments within the Councils and external organisations in the following circumstances:

  • To enable services or partners to answer your query or process paperwork on your behalf eg we may refer your query to West Sussex County Council if the issue you raised is dealt with by them rather than Adur & Worthing Councils
  • To offer you targeted support from other council teams eg we may give you the option of speaking to employment coaches, money mentors, digital buddies or teams that can help you with your wellbeing - we will ask you for your consent to do this
  • To inform other services that you have submitted a compliment/complaint or request for information and to ask them to provide the necessary response.
  • If we are legally obliged to take certain action or to share certain information, eg for a safeguarding referral (to keep you or others safe)
  • Where permitted under the Data Protection Act eg where the disclosure is necessary for the purposes of the prevention and/or the detection of crime.

Data may be passed to third parties including Government Departments, Registered Social Landlords, Private Sector Landlords, other local authorities and private-sector companies including those that assist us in fraud detection and prevention. We will not provide personal data to anyone else or use the data about you for any other purpose unless the law allows or requires us to.

Your personal data may be converted ('anonymised') into statistical or aggregated data in such a way that ensures that you cannot be identified from it. Aggregated data can't, by definition, be linked back to you as an individual and may be used to conduct research and analysis, including the preparation of statistics for use in reports.

Your data may also be used to fulfil our duty under Section 3 of the Local Government Act 1999 (as amended by s137 of the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007) to provide Best Value and to “make arrangements to secure continuous improvement in the way in which its functions are exercised, having regard to a combination of economy, efficiency and effectiveness”.

  • We will use your information to send you an invitation to provide customer feedback about the service that you have contacted.
  • The feedback process is anonymous and cannot be traced back to you.
  • This will help the council identify service improvements it can put in place.

How long the information is kept for

Records are kept in accordance with the Councils' disposal schedule and we will not keep your information for longer than necessary.

We take steps to make sure we only hold records about you in a secure way, and we will only make them available to those who have a right to see them.

Your rights

You have certain rights under UK Data Protection law including:

  • The right to be informed
  • The right of access to your personal data
  • The right of rectification (to have any inaccuracies corrected)
  • The right of erasure (to have your records deleted)
  • The right to restrict processing
  • The right to data portability
  • The right to object
  • Rights in relation to automated decision-making and profiling

Further information about your rights is available on the website of the Information Commissioner's Office.

If you have a concern about the way that we are collecting or using your personal data, we ask that you contact us in the first instance. Alternatively, you can contact the Information Commissioner's Office.

How to contact us

If you have any questions about how we collect, store, or use personal data please contact us as listed below:

Telephone us via:

  • Adur District Council switchboard: 01273 263000
  • Worthing Borough Council switchboard: 01903 239999

Email us on

Write to us:

  • Customer Services Manager
    Adur & Worthing Councils
    Portland House
    West Sussex
    BN11 1HA

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Page last updated: 05 August 2022

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