Data Protection Policy
This document outlines the policy of HJC with regards to handling our data protection obligations and the rights of customers to comply with the General Data Protection Regulations (“GDPR”). We are committed to compliance with the GDPR.
This policy sets out the procedures that we will follow when dealing with personal data. The procedures and principles set out in this policy must be followed at all times by us, our employees, sub-agents, contractors, or other parties working on our behalf to ensure the correct, lawful, and fair handling of all personal data.
General Data Protection Regulations will be referred to as GDPR or the ‘regulations’.
Information Commissioners Office will be referred to as the ICO.
HJC Ltd (Head Office), 17/19 Brighton Road, Surbiton KT6 5LR are all, either solely or jointly, referred as the Company/we/us/our.
In this policy, clients are referred to as data subjects and are any person we obtain personal information from, including property sellers, buyers, landlords, applicants and tenants.
A data controller is a person who (solely or jointly with other persons) determines the purpose and the manner in which any personal data is or will be processed.
Any information relating to an identifiable person is referred to as personal data in this policy. An identifiable person is one who can be identified, either directly or indirectly, by reference to an identifier, for example, a name or address.
Data Protection Principles
We aim to ensure compliance with the principles of the regulations below, and as such all personal data must be:
processed in a lawful, fair and transparent manner: GDPR requires that personal data is processed lawfully, fairly and transparently, without adversely affecting the rights of the data subject. To ensure we are compliant we will only process data where: the data subject has given consent to the processing of his or her personal data; it is necessary under the contractual and legal obligations (or necessary to enter into an contractual agreement) between the data subject and data controller; it is necessary to protect the vital interests of the data subject; it is necessary by law or required by official authorities, for example, HMRC or The Property Ombudsman; it is necessary for the purposes of the legitimate interests pursued by the controller or by a third party, except where such interests are overridden by the fundamental rights and freedoms of the data subject which require protection of personal data.
processed for specified, explicit and legitimate purposes: we collect and process the personal data as set out in the Personal Data section below. This may include personal data received directly from data subjects. It may also include data received from third parties. Third parties include, but are not restricted to sub-agents, contractors, or other parties working on our behalf. Please refer to Appendix A. We only process personal data for the following specific purposes (as set out in the Personal Data section of this policy); for other purposes expressly permitted by GDPR; for the purposes meeting any statutory obligation we have; complying with any other legal obligation. We will information data subjects of the purposes for which we process their personal data: within our written Terms of Business; on our website; verbally at the time information is taken; as soon as possible after collection where it is obtained from a third party.
processed in an adequate, relevant and limited manner: we only collect and process personal data that is adequate, relevant and limited for to the extent necessary to provide the service we agreed or for the specific purpose(s) informed to data subject.
accurate and kept up to date: we will ensure that all personal data processed is accurate when collected. Every reasonable step will be taken to ensure that personal data that is inaccurate is erased or rectified without delay up to date.
processed in a timely manner: we will not keep personal data for any longer than is necessary, taking into account the purposes for which that data was originally collected and processed. When the data is no longer required, appropriate steps will be taken, in a timely manner, to erase the data. Data will be held for up to 6 years.
processed and stored securely: we will ensure that all personal data collected and processed is kept in a manner that ensures an appropriate level of security using technical or organisational measures and in a form which permits identification of data subjects for no longer than is necessary. We will also ensure that it will be protected against unauthorised or unlawful processing and against accidental loss, destruction or damage.
Data Protection Measures
All our employees, agents, contractors, or other parties working on our behalf must comply with the following when working with personal data: all emails must be encrypted (automatic encryption using Office 365 Message Encryption (OME); where any personal data, including copies, is to be erased or otherwise disposed of for any reason, it should be deleted and disposed of in a permanent and secure manner. Hardcopies should be shredded, and electronic copies should be professionally deleted; where personal data is to be transferred in hardcopy form it should be passed directly to the recipient or sent by an appropriate delivery service after considering the type of data and security of delivery; personal data may be transmitted over secure networks only; facsimile transmission of personal data is not permitted; no personal data may be shared informally and if an employee, agent, sub-contractor, or other party working on our behalf requires access to any personal data that they do not already have access to, such access should be formally requested from Jay Chitnis on [email protected]; all hardcopies of personal data, along with any electronic copies stored on physical, removable media should be stored using an appropriate level of security; no personal data may be transferred to any employees, agents, contractors, or other parties, whether such parties are working on our behalf without our appropriate consent; personal data must always be handled with care and should not be left unattended or on view to unauthorised employees, agents, sub-contractors or other parties at any time; if personal data is being viewed on a computer screen and the computer in question is to be left unattended for any period of time, the user must lock the computer and screen before leaving it; no personal data should be stored on any mobile device (including, but not limited to, laptops, tablets and smartphones), whether such device belongs to us or otherwise, without our appropriate consent and in the event of such consent, strictly in accordance with all instructions and limitations described at the time the consent is given, and for no longer than is absolutely necessary; no personal data should be transferred to any device personally belonging to an employee; personal data may only be transferred to devices belonging to agents, contractors, or other parties working on our behalf with our appropriate consent; all electronic copies of personal data should be stored securely using passwords and data encryption (BitLocker, EncFS or gpg); all passwords used to protect personal data should be changed regularly and should not use words or phrases that can be easily guessed or otherwise compromised. All the software we use require passwords; under no circumstances should any passwords be written down or shared between any employees, agents, contractors, or other parties working on our behalf, irrespective of seniority or department. If a password is forgotten, it must be reset using the applicable method. IT staff do not have access to passwords; all personal data stored electronically should be backed up for 6 years with backups stored on secure encrypted server.
We will ensure that all employees, agents, contractors, or other parties working on our behalf take the following measures when collecting, holding, and processing personal data: that they will be made fully aware of both their individual responsibilities and our responsibilities under the GDPR and under this Data Protection Policy; that they will be provided with a copy of this policy; that those who need access to, and use of, personal data in order to carry out their assigned duties correctly will have access to personal data held by us; they will be appropriately trained; that they will be appropriately supervised; that methods of collecting, holding and processing personal data will be regularly evaluated and reviewed; the performance of all persons handling personal data on our behalf will be regularly evaluated and reviewed.
Our Data Protection Officer is Jay Chitnis. You can contact him on [email protected] We will retain written internal records of all personal data collected, held and processed, which will include the following information: the details of any third-party data controllers who will receive personal data from us; the purposes for which we process personal data; details of the categories of personal data collected, held, and processed; details of how long we will retain personal data; details of the measures we take to ensure security of personal data.
Privacy Impact Assessments
We will carry out Privacy Impact Assessments when and as required under the GDPR. Privacy Impact Assessments will be managed by Jay Chitnis and will address the following areas of importance: the purpose for which personal data is being held and processed; the processing operations in place; confirmation of the legitimate interests we are pursuing; an assessment of the necessity and proportionality of the data processing; an assessment of the risks posed to individual data subjects and details of the measures in place to minimise and handle risks including safeguards, data security, and other measures; and mechanisms to ensure the protection of personal data, sufficient to demonstrate compliance with the GDPR.
The Rights of Data Subjects
The GDPR sets out the following rights applicable to data subjects:
the right to be informed: we will ensure that the following information is provided to every data subject when personal data is collected: details of the Company; the identity of our Data Protection Officer; the purpose(s) and the legal basis for which the personal data is being collected will be processed; where the personal data is not obtained directly from the data subject, the specifics of the personal data; where the personal data is to be transferred to one or more third parties, details of those parties; details of the length of time the personal data will be held by us; details of the data subject’s rights under the Regulation; details of the data subject’s right to withdraw their consent to processing of their personal data at any time; details of the data subject’s right to complain to the ICO; details of any legal or contractual requirement or obligation necessitating the collection and processing of the personal data and details of any consequences for the data subject for failing to provide it.
the right of access: a data subject may make a Subject Access Request (SAR) at any time to find out more about the personal data we hold about them. We will normally respond to a SAR within one month of receipt, or two months for complex and/or numerous requests. We will inform the data subject of the need for the extension, if appropriate. We do not charge for the handling of normal SARs, but we reserve the right to charge a reasonable fee for additional copies of information already supplied to a data subject, and for requests that are manifestly unfounded or excessive, particularly where such requests are repetitive. All SAR received must be forwarded to Jay Chitnis.
the right to rectification: if we are informed by the data subject that personal data we hold is inaccurate or incomplete, and they request correction, we will do so and confirm our actions normally within one month of receipt the data subject’s notice, but this may be extended to two months in complex situations. Where any disclosure of inaccurate data has been made to a third party we will advise the third party of the correction.
the right to erasure (also known as the ‘right to be forgotten’): data subjects can request that we erase the personal data we hold about them in the following circumstances: it is no longer necessary for us to hold that personal data for the purpose it was originally collected or processed; the data subject wishes to withdraw their consent to us to hold and process their personal data; the data subject objects to us holding and processing their personal data unless there is an overriding legitimate interest allowing us to continue to do so; the personal data has been processed unlawfully; the personal data needs to be erased so that we can comply with a particular legal obligation.
Unless we have reasonable grounds to refuse to erase personal data, all requests for erasure will be complied with, and the data subject informed within one month of receipt of the data subject’s request, but this may be extended to two months in complex situations. We will inform the data subject of the need for the extension, if appropriate. If any personal data that is to be erased in response to a data subject request has been disclosed to third parties (including those with whom we are no longer contractually obliged), we will inform those parties of the erasure, unless it is impossible or would require disproportionate effort to do so.
the right to restrict processing: data subjects may request that we cease processing the personal data we hold about them. If such a request is made, we will retain only the amount of personal data that is necessary by law. We will ensure that no further processing of their personal data takes place. If any affected personal data has been disclosed to third parties, those parties will be informed of the applicable restrictions on processing it, unless it is impossible or would require disproportionate effort to do so.
the right to data portability: we do not process personal data using automated means.
the right to object: data subjects have the right to object to us processing their personal data based on legitimate interests (including profiling), direct marketing (including profiling). Where a data subject objects to us processing their personal data based on its legitimate interests, we will cease such processing forthwith, unless it can be demonstrated that we have legitimate grounds for such processing and these override the data subject’s interests, rights and freedoms; or the processing is necessary for the conduct of legal claims. Where a data subject objects to us processing their personal data for direct marketing purposes, we will cease such processing forthwith.
Personal data will be collected, held and processed: from potential buyers and potential tenants; from our property selling clients; from our landlord clients; from applicants for tenancies and tenants; from seller clients and buyers to meet our obligations under Money Laundering Regulations; from Tenants to meet our obligations under the Immigration Act 2014; and will include, for tenancies, details of all persons including children and immediate staff residing in the rental property: to market directly to potential customers. The following personal data, where relevant, may be collected, held, and processed by us: name; home address; contact telephone numbers; email addresses; date of birth; current property circumstances; property purchase/rental budget; current property purchasing or renting financial position; property purchase/rental preferences; copies of documents to confirm that funds are available to purchase properties; properties value/ rental value; full details of the property to be marketed; photographs of the property to be marketed; alarm codes and other security information where we are conducting viewing; official or other photographic identity confirmation; copies of appropriate documents to confirm home address; the information required to complete a tenancy application; period they have lived at their current property.
Data Breach Notification
All personal data breaches must be reported immediately to Jay Chitnis on [email protected] If a personal data breach occurs and that breach is likely to result in a risk to the rights and freedoms of data subjects (e.g. financial loss, breach of confidentiality, discrimination, reputational damage, or other significant social or economic damage), we will ensure that the Information Commissioner’s Office is informed of the breach without delay, and in any event, within 72 hours after having become aware of it. If a personal data breach is likely to result in a high risk (that is, a higher risk than that described above) to the rights and freedoms of data subjects, we will ensure that all affected data subjects are informed of the breach directly and without undue delay. Data breach notifications will include the following information: the categories and approximate number of data subjects concerned; the categories and approximate number of personal data records concerned; the name and contact details of Jay Chitnis on [email protected]; the likely consequences of the breach; details of the measures we have taken or proposed to be taken to address the breach including, where appropriate, measures to mitigate its possible adverse effects.