The Data Protection Act 1998 states that “Personal data means data which relate to a living individual who can be identified –
(a) from those data, or
(b) from those data and other information which is in the possession of, or is likely to come into the possession of, the data controller.”.
This notice is relevant to all current students, prospective and former students and customers who provide personal details when in contact with Belfast Met.
WHAT DO WE COLLECT AND WHY
When you enrol on or apply for a course at Belfast Met it is essential that we collect personal information from you to enable us to provide you with the service you have requested. Should you wish to engage with specific College departments e.g Student Funding, you may need to provide information in addition to what you supply on your enrolment/application form however they will not ask for information not necessary to the additional service you require.
Our enrolment and application forms are designed for the purpose of collecting all relevant personal information necessary for us to process your request and for us to submit our mandatory information returns to the Department for the Economy.
The College is required by the Department for the Economy to ask for the following information for statistical purposes; marital status, racial group, religion, employment sector, and whether you are employed.
The College has a statutory obligation to safeguard all students, staff and visitors. Should you have a relevant criminal conviction to disclose, you will be required to disclose this to the Director of Learning and Customer Support who will contact you. Details on how to make this disclosure are available on our enrolment forms.
As a public authority, the college will obtain, process and manage all data in compliance with the Data Protection Act (1998).
We also need to collect information from our many stakeholders including students, staff, suppliers, employers etc, to allow us to function properly - to teach, to monitor performance and achievements, enrol students, receive tuition fees, payments and funding, chase up debtors, recruit and pay staff and expenses and pay our suppliers and provide and obtain services.
HOW WE USE YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
This information collected is for the purpose of course administration, providing education and training, placement, providing student support if required, obtaining results for courses and examinations and the administration of student awards and fees. In addition, the information held may be used for planning further courses, liaison with other educational establishments and preparation of returns to the Department for the Economy.
DISCLOSURE TO THIRD PARTIES
To fulfil our obligation to you and the Department for the Economy it will be necessary for the College to share your information with some third party organisations e.g Examination bodies to claim your achievement on a vocational course, organisations responsible for various forms of student funding if you submit an application for financial assistance and debt recovery agencies should you default on your payment of fees to the College.
We will not disclose your information to third party organisations who have no direct role in assisting us with our service to you and our obligations as a public authority without your consent however we may be required to share your information with the PSNI for the purposes of prevention or detection of crime, or the apprehension or prosecution of offenders.
Belfast Met operates a Closed Circuit Television system (CCTV) on all main campuses i.e Titanic Quarter, Milfield and E3 to provide staff, students and visitors with a safe environment and also to protect College property against criminal damage.
All staff, students and visitors should have a reasonable expectation of being captured on CCTV on a daily basis.
CONTROLLING YOUR DATA
The College will not ask for more information than is necessary for us to achieve our legal and regulatory obligations and to fulfil our commitment to you.
Where the use of your data is unnecessary e.g marketing communications, we will offer you the opportunity to opt out of your data being processed for that purpose.
COLLEGE WIDE COMMITMENT TO YOUR PRIVACY
The College is committed to protecting your privacy and have taken measures to ensure all staff are aware of their responsibilities in achieving this. The College Corporate Compliance Officer is responsible for maintaining all policies and procedures relating to Records Management and Data Protection and updating them as and when significant changes occur eg changes in legislation.
All College employees must complete mandatory training on Data Protection and they receive regular information updates when new policies and procedures become operational.
Belfast Mets network systems are secured from external access by a firewall (Microsoft TMG). Internal network systems are secured by New Technology File System permissions, which only allows certain users access to certain servers / shares / resources.
RETENTION AND DESTRUCTION
The College Retention Schedule is currently being revised and will be available on the College website from 1st January 2015.
SUBJECT ACCESS REQUEST
As outlined in the Data Protection Act (1998) you have the right under Section 7 to request what information the College holds on you. All requests will be considered in line with the legislation and a response will be provided to you within 40 working days. If an exemption applies and we are unable to release information to you, the College will inform you of reasons for refusal.
CHANGES TO YOUR PERSONAL DATA
As the Data Subject, you are responsible for ensuring the information which you provide is accurate and notifying the College of any amendments to this data should it change.
Department for the Economy Statement
Your data will be shared with the Department for the Economy for statistical, funding and other legitimate business purposes including the provision of careers guidance. Your information may be accessed by other Civil Service Departments. The information is covered by the Data Protection Act (1998) which entitles you to see the data held about you.