Environment Standards Scotland Privacy Notice

What data do we collect and why?

Environmental Standards Scotland (ESS) is set up to ensure the effectiveness of environmental law, and prevent enforcement gaps arising from the UK leaving the European Union. Following the passage of the UK Withdrawal from the European Union (Continuity) (Scotland) Bill on 22 December 2020, ESS has commenced work on a non-statutory basis.

One of the functions of ESS is to investigate the effectiveness, implementation or application of environmental law, and whether public authorities have complied with environmental law.  To help us assess any representations on these matters, while in this non-statutory phase, you may need to give us further information about how this has affected you.

We will firstly collect personal information such as your name, address and contact details, to be able to contact you and discuss your enquiry.

We will then contact you to gather further information:

  • the nature of your representations;
  • details of the public authority concerned;
  • general correspondence, questions, queries, or feedback.

We will also be collecting IP addresses and hostnames of website users. This enables us to maintain statistics on the use of our website, as set out in the Cookie policy.

What do we not collect currently?

We ask that at this stage, that you do not provide us with any health related information, if you do not feel it is related to your case. 

Health information is defined by GDPR as ‘special category personal data’, which means personal data relating to, for example, a living person’s racial or ethnic origin, genetic data, biometric data or data concerning health. Special categories of particularly sensitive personal information need more careful handling. We need to have further justification for collecting, storing and using this type of personal information.

Who holds my data?

While ESS is in the process of being established, it is the Scottish Government that will hold this personal data, which is being collected by ESS.

This is an interim measure. Once ESS is fully established, all personal data will be transferred to ESS, unless required to be stored by the Scottish Government, or deleted under the retention periods stated. At this point of transfer we will contact you to advise your data is being moved, and send you the new ESS privacy notice.

For information, you have the right to ask us to erase your personal information in certain circumstances, though this could prevent us from administering your case.

Legal basis for processing your information

ESS will only collect, store and use your personal data for defined purposes. We use your information to manage any communication we have with you. We will only share your personal data outside ESS with your consent, as required by law, or to protect ESS, or the public, or with other organisations that help ESS fulfil its obligations with you, and then only with partners who share ESS commitment to protecting your privacy and data.

If we share your data outside ESS, we will provide you with the name and contact details of those we intend to share the data with and the purpose for sharing the data.

The legal basis for processing data is to perform a task in the public interest, that is being set out in law.

Data retention

ESS will record correspondence on a Casework Management System, which all its staff have access to. We will record all information provided by you on this system, including your name, email address and, if provided, your telephone number. We will protect the security of your personal data by use of appropriate measures and processes. We try to ensure that we only collect the minimum personal data necessary for us to offer a service to you.

We will only retain your personal data for as long as is necessary to fulfil the purposes we collect it for, including for the purposes of satisfying any legal, accounting or reporting requirements. To determine the appropriate retention period for personal data, we consider the amount, nature, and sensitivity of the personal data, the potential risk of harm from unauthorised use or disclosure of your personal data, the purposes for which we process your personal data and whether we can achieve those purposes through other means, and the applicable legal requirements.

Requests for information collected by ESS

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, until ESS is fully established it is not yet subject to the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002. All FOISA requests of this nature should be made directly to Scottish Government.

Your personal data rights

The laws give you the rights over how data about you is used. ESS must tell you about these rights and help you use them. The rights are:

  1. To be given information about why and how we use your data;
  2. To see, and be given a copy of, data we hold about you;
  3. To have incorrect or incomplete data corrected or completed;
  4. To delete data we hold about you;
  5. To stop using your data in certain ways i.e. to restrict processing of data;
  6. The right to ask for a copy of your personal information in a machine readable format (the right of portability);
  7. To object to how your data is being used if we have no grounds to use it.

These rights are not absolute and may depend on our lawful basis for processing that personal data. 

Please contact us at enquiries@environmentalstandards.scot or by telephone on 0808 1964000 about your personal data rights.

Further information on your rights can be found on the Scottish Government website at the attached link: https://www.gov.scot/publications/contacting-the-scottishgovernment-handling-your-data/

If you have any complaints about the way your data has been handled, these can be made to the Scottish Government Data Protection Officer via email at dataprotectionofficer@gov.scot. Please note that Environmental Standards Scotland does not currently have its own Data Protection Officer as it is at present a non-statutory public body.

If the Data Protection Officer cannot resolve your complaint, you also have the right to lodge a complaint with the Information Commissioners Office. Further information about how to lodge a complaint is available at https://ico.org.uk/concerns  The Information Commissioner Wycliffe House Water Lane Wilmslow Cheshire SK9 5AF Tel: 08456 30 60 60 Website: www.ico.org.uk”