The charter covers both personal data and other information Pacifica holds in connection with our duties under the Data Protection Act 1998, Freedom of Information Act 2000, Environmental Information Regulations 2004 and Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003.
It will tell you how you can get access to information, including your personal data and what you can do if you think standards are not being met.
It will also assist any individual or organisation in contact with Pacifica or subject to its enforcement procedures to understand how the information concerning them is treated and when we will consider it for disclosure on request. This charter will be reviewed annually and updated to take into account any changes in legislation or our policies.
Pacifica owns this charter on behalf of the Executive Board and is responsible for its implementation.
Pacifica will ensure that information security policies and procedures are reviewed and implemented across business functions ensuring ongoing continuous improvement. These policies aim to ensure that the requirements of confidentiality, integrity and availability are maintained at each stage in the information lifecycle. Pacifica is also responsible for responding to requests for information and for dealing with complaints about how we have handled data.
All staff and contractors are trained in and are aware of their responsibilities as set out in these policies.
Types of information
Pacifica both personal and non-personal information in a variety of databases and information stores which are critical to its activities, together with systems relating to Pacifica's support functions such as human resources, facilities and finance.
How our information is managed
At Pacifica we manage, maintain and protect all information according to legislation, ICO policies and best practices. We have security measures in place to maintain and safeguard the confidentiality, integrity and availability of our systems and data. All information is stored, processed and communicated in a secure manner making it readily available to authorised users.
Pacifica is also committed to the proactive dissemination of information, to be open and transparent and will routinely publish information unless restricted by legislation or public policy considerations.
We know how important it is to protect customers’ privacy and to comply with the Data Protection Act. We will safeguard your information and in most circumstances will not disclose personal data without consent. If we ask customers for personal information we will:
- let them know why we need it, where it is not obvious;
- only ask for what we need, and not collect excessive or irrelevant information;
- make sure nobody has access to it who should not;
- let customers know if we share it with other organisations; and
- only keep it for as long as we need to in accordance with our retention schedule.
In return, to keep information reliable and up to date, we ask customers to:
- give us accurate information, and
- tell us as soon as possible of any changes, such as a change of address.
Access to personal information
You can find out if we hold any personal information about you by making a ‘subject access request’ under the Data Protection Act. If we do hold information about you we will:
- give you a description of it
- tell you why we are holding it
- tell you who it could be disclosed to, and
- let you have a copy of the information in an intelligible form.
We handle all information in a manner that respects the rights of individuals and which complies with the requirements of the Data Protection Act.
To request any of your personal information held by Pacifica please send you're request via our contact form or write to us at the address provided below. If we do hold information about you, you can ask us to correct any mistakes by contacting us using the same contact details.
Legislation – disclosure of information
The Freedom of Information Act 2000 and the Data Protection Act 1998 have a number of exemptions which must be considered before publication or disclosure. However, we will not withhold information simply because it falls into a relevant exemption. We will assess the impact of disclosure in relation to the requested information and make a decision on a case-by-case basis (except where we have decided that information of that type should be published proactively).
Section 59 of the Data Protection Act 1998 makes it an offence for the Commissioner or member of his staff to knowingly or recklessly disclose information that has been obtained or provided for the purposes of the Act without lawful authority.
Factors we will take into account when considering whether information should be disclosed will include the following:
- the extent to which the information, or some of it, is already in the public domain;
- who is asking for the information and why they want it;
- the extent to which a requester is prepared to give an assurance of confidentiality and the extent to which this can be relied on;
- whether the needs of the requester can be met by supplying part of the information or supplying it in a different form;
- whether the information is personal in nature and the extent to which its disclosure would be an intrusion on privacy;
- the reasonable expectations of the person or organisation who supplied the information to Pacifica as to confidentiality, onwards disclosure etc; and
- whether disclosing the information would be likely to prejudice Pacifica's functions, for example, by undermining an investigation, development of public policy or a potential prosecution.
To request information please send you're request via our contact form or write to:
- Pacifica House
- The Venter Building
- Houghton Le Spring
- Co Durham
- DH4 5RA