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Customer Privacy Notice and Protection of Personal Information

Customer Privacy Notice and Protection of Personal Information

Buckinghamshire County Council Library Service is committed to protecting your privacy. All public and private organisations are legally obliged to protect any personal information they hold. We operate in accordance with the 1998 Data Protection Act in respect of any personal information you give us. Our registration number with the Information Commissioner’s office is Z6351745 and may be viewed at Information Commissioner's Office website. For more details on the Data Protection and Freedom of Information Acts please contact the Information Commissioner's Office. 

What do we mean by personal information?

We need to record some very basic details about our customers. Some of the details we ask for are mandatory. The mandatory information we ask for includes your full name, date of birth, gender, address and postcode. The other details we ask for are non-mandatory and you do NOT have to supply them. We ask for these extra details because they help us to monitor and improve our services. The non-mandatory information we ask for includes your e-mail, telephone number, disability information, preferred language and ethnic origin. We may also ask for you to confirm your identity by providing two forms of identification*. This is usually when you are joining the library for the first time, when your membership has expired and needs renewing, or when we simply need to confirm your identity.

What is my personal information used for?

We use your personal information for our membership records and to provide the services you have subscribed to. We use your personal information to identify you when you contact us (in these situations we will ask you to confirm some of your personal details). On some occasions we use your personal information to contact you (this is explained in further detail below). We use your personal information for statistical analysis and to monitor and improve our services.

Who can view my personal information?

There are 2 Buckinghamshire County Council departments that have secure access to your personal information. These are the Library Service* and Customer Contact Centre. In addition, where you use the facilities provided by our SELMS partner libraries   your data may be visible to other library service staff .

In some circumstances your personal details may also be disclosed to other employees of Buckinghamshire County Council. This can happen when other departments are required to help us provide the services you have requested or when it is necessary to answer an issue you have raised that is beyond our expertise.

* Some of our libraries are provided in partnership with local community organisations and your personal details will be securely available to volunteers who help us to operate our Community Library Service. Volunteers sign a Confidentiality Agreement that is legally binding and complies with the Data Protection Act.

Your personal information will NOT be disclosed to third parties unless required by law.

How do you store my personal details?

We only store your personal information when volunteered to us by you.
The information you provide is administered by employees of the Buckinghamshire Library service and our Community library partners. When you join the library your personal information is entered into our electronic library management system.

If you do not borrow an item for 24 months your library membership will become deactivated. To reactivate your account you will need to confirm your personal details with a member of staff. We will NOT contact you when your account becomes deactivated. In line with our policies, after a period of inactivity on your account your personal information will be  erased from our systems.

You have the right to have any personal information amended at anytime. Providing there are no outstanding loans or charges on your account you have the right to have any personal information removed from our systems and records.

How will you contact me?

On occasion we will use your personal information to contact you at the address you have provided us with. Your personal information will NOT be sold or disclosed to any third parties.

How will a Community Library use my data?

For normal library business, customers will find their data handled no differently than in a library manned exclusively by Council staff. However a community library will have some independence to run their own events and local library users may be asked to support these and other fundraising activities. The processing of  data in this way will be the responsibility of the Community Library.

Customer feedback forms

We welcome comments and suggestions from customers. Customers can submit comments via letter, or feedback forms in our branches. There is also a feedback form on our website. Any contact information you do supply is used solely for the purposes of replying to your comments.

Privacy and our Public Network Computers

When you book a People’s Network session our employees are able to view the date and time of your session, your name and library membership number. This information is stored on our secure computer booking system.

We also make use of software to gauge customer demand on our Peoples Network computers. The software we employ is used to evaluate and improve our services and no personal information is collected this way. Anyone who wishes to use our People’s Network computers must read and accept the terms of our Acceptable Use Agreement.

Buckinghamshire Library & Information Service reserves the right to refuse or terminate a public computer session if we believe our Acceptable Use Agreement is being violated or there is some form of inappropriate activity taking place. Because we offer access to the internet we have a responsibility to prevent grossly offensive, indecent or threatening messages being sent.

Privacy when asking a question

We aim to be discreet in responding to enquiries of a personal or sensitive nature, especially when they are made in person. We also endeavour to protect your confidentiality when dealing with any questions or issues you raise (this includes telephone and e-mail enquiries).

Please note that our enquiry desks are located in public spaces and it is possible for conversations to be heard by other customers. We remind customers to be cautious when making enquiries of a personal or sensitive nature.

How to make a complaint to us

When we receive a complaint from a person we make up a file containing the details of the complaint. This normally contains the identity of the complainant and any other individuals involved in the complaint. We will only use the personal information we collect to process the complaint and to check on the level of service we provide. Instruction may be found here:

Feedback and complaints     

How to get a copy of your information

We will try to be as open as it can be in terms of giving you access to your information.  You can find out if we hold any personal information about you by requesting the data under this link:

Request for information        

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