Data Protection

Introduction

Data Protection aims to regulate the collection, processing, keeping, use and disclosure of personal data relating to individuals. The Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003, which govern this area, define personal data as data relating to a living individual who can be identified either from the data or from the data in conjunction with other information. This legislation applies to personal data held in manual and electronic format by private and public organisations. It imposes responsibilities on those who control personal data (Data Controllers) and confers rights on individuals in relation to their own personal data (Data Subjects). Roscommon County Council is registered as a Data Controller with the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner (Registration Number 10924/A). Details of the Council’s registration are available at www.dataprotection.ie 

Responsibilities

Roscommon County Council, as a Data Controller, is obliged under Section 2 of the Data Protection Act 1988 to: 

  • Obtain and process personal data fairly.
  • Keep it accurate, complete and up to date.
  • Keep it only for one or more specified, explicit and lawful purpose(s).
  • Use it and disclose it in ways compatible with those purposes.
  • Ensure that it is adequate, relevant and not excessive.
  • Retain it for no longer than is necessary for the purpose or purposes for which it was collected.
  • Keep it safe and secure. 

Rights

Individuals have the following rights under the Data Protection Acts 1988 to 2003:

1. Rights to Establish Existence of Personal Data

Individuals have a right under Section 3 of the Data Protection Act 1988, following the making of a request in writing to Roscommon County Council, to be informed within 21 days whether it holds any of their personal data. They also have a right to be provided with a description of the personal data and details of the purposes for which is kept. 

 

2. Right of Access to Personal Data

Individuals have a right under Section 4 of the Data Protection Act 1988, following the making of a request in writing to Roscommon County Council, to be provided within 40 days with a copy of their personal data. Requests made to Roscommon County Council, under Section 4 of the Data Protection Act 1998, require payment of a fee of €6.35. 

The right of access to personal data is restricted in a limited number of circumstances. These include personal data - 

  • Kept for the prevention, detection or investigation of offences.
  • In respect of which disclosure would be prejudicial to the security of a prison or other place of detention.
  • In respect of which disclosure would be prejudicial to the protection of international relations.
  • Relating to an estimate of liability on foot of a claim for damages or compensation where disclosure would be prejudicial to the interests of the Data Controller.
  • In respect of which legal professional privilege applies.
  • Kept only for the purpose of preparing statistics or carrying out research.
  • Consisting of back up data.
  • Consisting of expressions of opinion given in confidence or on the understanding that they would be treated as confidential.
  • Where its release would involve disproportionate effort.
  • Where a previous access request for identical or similar data has been complied with unless a reasonable interval has elapsed since compliance with the previous request.
  • Relating to medical treatment or social work if disclosure is likely to cause unwarranted damage or distress.

3. Right of Rectification or Erasure of Personal Data

Individuals have a right under Section 6 of the Data Protection Act 1998, following the making of a request in writing to Roscommon County Council, to be have rectified or where appropriate erased, within 40 days, any personal data in relation to which the Council has failed to comply with its responsibilities for the collection, processing, keeping, use and disclosure of personal data under Section 2 of the Act. 

Individuals making requests under Sections 3, 4 and 6 of the Data Protection Act 1988 may be asked by Roscommon County Council to provide it with proof of identity and details that will assist it to locate the personal data involved. 

Appealing a Decision

Individuals who are refused a request by Roscommon County Council, under Sections 3, 4 and 6 of the Data Protection Act 1988, for information on the existence of personal data, access to personal data or the rectification or erasure of personal data may make a complaint to the Office of the Data Commissioner. Contact details are as follows: 

Office of the Data Commissioner

Canal House,

Station Rd.

Portarlington,

Co. Laois 

Locall:        1890 252 231,

Telephone: 057 8684800

E-mail:       info@dataprotection.ie         

Further Assistance

For further assistance on data protection contact the Data Protection Officer, Roscommon County Council at 090 6637100 or foioff@roscommoncoco.ie