SUBJECT ACCESS REQUEST (SAR) PROCEDURES
This procedure document supplements the subject access request (SAR) provisions set out in Pacifica's Data Protection (GDPR) Policy & Procedure document and provides the process for individuals to use when making an SAR and the protocols we follow when an SAR is received.
Pacifica needs to collect personal information to effectively and compliantly carry out our everyday business functions and services and in some circumstances, to comply with the requirements of the law and/or regulations.
As we process personal information regarding individuals (data subjects), we are obligated under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to protect such information, and to obtain, use, process, store and destroy it, only in compliance with the GDPR and its principles.
The General Data Protection Regulation
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) gives individuals the right to know what information is held about them, to access this information and to exercise other rights, including the rectification of inaccurate data. The GDPR is a standardised regulatory framework which ensures that personal information is obtained, handled and disposed of properly.
As we are obligated under the GDPR and UK data protection laws, we abide by the Regulations principles, which ensure that personal information shall be:
- processed lawfully, fairly and in a transparent manner in relation to the data subject (‘lawfulness, fairness and transparency’)
- collected for specified, explicit and legitimate purposes and not further processed in a manner that is incompatible with those purposes (‘purpose limitation’)
- adequate, relevant and limited to what is necessary in relation to the purposes for which they are processed (‘data minimisation’)
- accurate and, where necessary, kept up to date; every reasonable step must be taken to ensure that personal data that are inaccurate, having regard to the purposes for which they are processed, are erased or rectified without delay (‘accuracy’)
- kept in a form which permits identification of data subjects for no longer than is necessary for the purposes for which the personal data are processed (‘storage limitation’)
- processed in a manner that ensures appropriate security of the personal data, including protection against unauthorised or unlawful processing and against accidental loss, destruction or damage, using appropriate technical or organisational measures (‘integrity and confidentiality’).
The Regulation also requires that ‘the controller shall be responsible for, and be able to demonstrate, compliance with the GDPR principles’ (‘accountability’). We have adequate and effectives measures, controls and procedures that protect and secure your personal information at all times and guarantee that it is only ever obtained, processed and disclosure in accordance with the GDPR.
What is Personal Information?
Information protected under the GDPR is known as “personal data” and is defined as: -
“Any information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person; an identifiable natural person is one who can be identified, directly or indirectly, in particular by reference to an identifier such as a name, an identification number, location data, an online identifier or to one or more factors specific to the physical, physiological, genetic, mental, economic, cultural or social identity of that natural person.”
Further information on what constitutes personal information and your rights under the data protection regulation and laws can be found on the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) website: https://ico.org.uk/for-the-public/
The Right of Access
Under Article 15 of the GDPR, an individual has the right to obtain from the controller, confirmation as to whether or not personal data concerning them is being processed. We are committed to upholding the rights of individuals and have dedicated processes in place for providing access to personal information. Where requested, we will provide the following information: -
- the purposes of the processing
- the categories of personal data concerned
- the recipients or categories of recipient to whom the personal data have been or will be disclosed
- If the data has been transferred to a third country or international organisations (and if so, the appropriate safeguards used)
- the envisaged period for which the personal data will be stored (or the criteria used to determine that period)
- where the personal data was not collected directly from the individual, any available information as to their source
How To Make a Subject Access Request (SAR)?
A subject access request (SAR) is a request for access to the personal information that Pacifica holds about an individual, which we are required to provide under the GDPR (unless an exemption applies). The information that we provide is covered in this document.
You can make this request in writing using the details provided in this document, or can submit your access request electronically. Where a request is received by electronic means, we will provide the requested information in a commonly used electronic form (unless otherwise requested by the data subject).
What We Do When We Receive An SAR
Subject Access Requests (SAR) are passed to the person responsible for data protection within our organisation as soon as it is received and a record of the request is noted. The person in charge will use all reasonable measures to verify the identity of the individual making the access request, especially where the request is made using online services.
We will utilise the request information to ensure that we can verify your identity and where we are unable to do so, we may contact you to provide evidence of your identity prior to actioning any request. This is to protect your information and rights.
If a third party, relative or representative is requesting the information on your behalf, we will verify their authority to act on your behalf and may again contact you to confirm their identity and authorisation prior to acting the subject access request.
If you have provided enough information in your SAR to collate the personal information held about you, we will gather all forms (hard copy, electronic etc) and ensure that the information required is provided in an acceptable format. If we do not have enough information to locate your records, we may contact you for further details. This will be done as soon as possible and within the Regulation timeframes set out below.
Once we have collated all of the personal information held about you, we will send this to you in writing (or in a commonly used electronic form if requested). The information will be in a concise, transparent, intelligible and easily accessible form, using clear and plain language.
Fees and Timeframes
SARs are always completed within 30-days and are provided free of charge. If we consider that the SAR is excessive, which could include repeated requests or where the administration costs in compiling the information requested in the SAR, we will contact you accordingly. Excessive requests may result in a reasonable fee being charged to cover administrative costs which will be discussed prior to the data being compiled, In these cases once the fee has been paid, the SAR will be processed. This fee is dependent upon the complexity and format of the SAR request.
Where the request is made by electronic means, we provide the information in a commonly used electronic format, unless an alternative format is requested where we will try to accommodate the format request.
We always aim to provide the requested information at the earliest convenience, but at a maximum, allow 30 days from the date the request was received. However, where the retrieval or provision of information is particularly complex or is subject to a valid delay, the period may be extended by two further months. If this is the case, we will write to you within 30 days and keep you informed of the delay and the reasons.
Your Other Rights
Under the GDPR, you have the right to request rectification of any inaccurate data held by us. Where we are notified of an inaccuracy and agree that the data is incorrect, we will amend the details immediately as directed by you and make a note on the system (or record) of the change and reasons.
We will rectify the errors within 30-days and inform you in writing of the correction and where applicable, provide the details of any third-party to whom the data has been disclosed.
If for any reason, we are unable to act in response to a request for rectification and/or completion, we always provide a written explanation to you and inform you of your right to complain to the Supervisory Authority and to a judicial remedy.
Individuals also have the right to request from the erasure of personal data we hold or to restrict the processing of personal data where it concerns the data subject; as well as the right to object to such processing. You can use the contact details in section 7 to make such requests.
Under the access request requirements, the GDPR requires us to inform the data subject of the existence of automated decision-making, including profiling and meaningful information about the logic involved, as well as the significance and the envisaged consequences of such processing for the data subject. This does not apply to our firm.
Exemptions and Refusals
The GDPR contains certain exemptions from the provision of personal information. If one or more of these exemptions applies to your subject access request or where we do not act on the request, we shall inform you at the earliest convenience, or at the latest, within one month of receipt of the request.
Where possible, we will provide you with the reasons for not acting and any possibility of lodging a complaint with a supervisory authority and seeking a judicial remedy. Details of contacting the supervisory authority are set out in this document.
Submission & Lodging a Complaint
If you are unsatisfied with our actions or with to make an internal complaint, you can contact us in writing as outlined on our website.
If you remain dissatisfied with our actions, you have the right to lodge a complaint with the Supervisory Authority. The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) can be contacted at:
- Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow. Cheshire. SK9 5AF
Telephone: 0303 123 1113 (local rate) or 01625 545 745 (national rate)
Fax: 01625 524 510