Freedom of Information Request – Privacy Policy

Privacy notice

When you submit a request for information, you provide information about yourself and the information you wish to receive. This privacy notice describes how we use this information.

When you submit a request for information, you provide information about yourself and the information you wish to receive. This privacy notice describes how we use this information.

When you submit a request for information to UOE Accommodation Ltd (UOEAL) under freedom of information, data protection or environmental information legislation, you provide information about yourself and the information you wish to receive.

Purposes

We use this information for the following purposes:

  1. To process requests

UOEAL staff use information about your request, including your identity, contact details and (where relevant) your relationship and interactions with the University, to process your request. These staff include those:

  1. whose role includes the management and co-ordination of the UOEAL’s response to information requests
  2. who hold information relevant to the processing of your request
  3. who are asked to contribute to the UOEAL’s response

Processing your request includes:

  • Locating, retrieving, and collating information relevant to your request
  • Consulting individuals (for example staff and third parties) affected by your request
  • Identifying whether any of the information is already available to you and whether any of the information should be withheld from disclosure
  • Preparing the response to your request

If you have requested information about a member of staff, please note that, as outlined in our privacy notice for staff, the UOEAL nor the University of Edinburgh will not normally disclose personal information.  Furthermore, we will inform or consult relevant staff if disclosure would not reasonably be expected, this may include sharing a copy of your request with them.

  1. To process review or appeal requests

If you request a review of the UOEAL’s handling of your request, the staff appointed to conduct the review use information about your request, including personal data about you described above, to scrutinise the handling of your request and to reconsider the University’s response.

If you submit a complaint or appeal to the Office of the Scottish Information Commissioner (OSIC) about the way we have handled your request for environmental or other information held by the UOEAL, we will share information about you, your request and its context with the OSIC.  If you submit a complaint or appeal to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) about the way we have handled your request for personal information about yourself, we will share information about you, your request and its context with the ICO.

If the handling of your request is referred to a court of law, we will share information about you, your request and its context, with the Court and with our legal advisors.

  1. To respond to your request and any review or appeal

We use the personal details you provide, including your contact details, to send you the UOEAL’s response.  UOEAL normally replies using the method you used to submit your request; for example, if you submitted your request by email we will usually reply by email.  However, there are times when the type of information you have requested means that we need to make alternative arrangements; for example, if you have requested information about yourself we need to transmit it to you by a secure method.  Where this is the case, we will provide further details to you before we send the response.

  1. To administer your request and keep a record of it

We keep records of all requests for information made under freedom of information, environmental information or data protection legislation.  This includes case folders containing our correspondence with you about your request and database records containing your name, contact details, a summary of your request and your relationship with the UOEAL (if known).  We use this information to ensure that the UOEAL complies with our legal obligations and can demonstrate and monitor our compliance.

Why we do this

We use information about you and your request to comply with our legal obligation to respond to requests for information under:

  • The Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (‘FOISA’)
  • The Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (‘EISR’)
  • The General Data Protection Regulation, 27 April 2016 (‘GDPR’)
  • The Data Protection Act 2018 (‘DPA’)

Consequences of not providing information about yourself

If you request information about yourself under data protection legislation, we can only respond to your request if you provide us with enough information to locate and identify the information you want, and to verify your identity.  This is because we must not disclose information about you to the wrong person.

If you request environmental or other information held by the UOEAL, it is a statutory requirement to provide us with your real full name, the name of anyone on whose behalf you are making the request, and a correspondence address.  If you do not provide this information, UOEAL is under no obligation to provide the information you request and you will lose the right to appeal to OSIC if you are dissatisfied with the way the UOEAL has handled your request. The Scottish Information Commissioner provides guidance on this topic on their website.

Scottish Information Commissioner Guidance.

Information retention

We usually dispose of request case folders five years after the academic year in which we received your request.  If your request relates to an ongoing relationship issue, we may retain information about your request until the issue is resolved.  If a case folder may assist with the processing of current or future requests, we retain anonymised information about the request.

Any questions?

If you have any questions about the way the UOEAL uses information about you and your request, please contact the FOI Practitioner at the following address.

FOI Practitioner

Pollock Halls

18 Holyrood Park road

Edinburgh

EH16 5AY

Your rights

Details of your data protection rights and how to contact the University’s Data Protection Officer are published at:

https://www.edinburghfirst.co.uk/privacy-and-cookie-policy/