Privacy Statement



Laois County Council has created this privacy statement in order to demonstrate our firm commitment to your privacy. By visiting Laois.ie you are accepting the practices described in this Privacy Notice.

This statement relates to our privacy practices in connection with the aforementioned websites. We are not responsible for the content or pricacy practices of other websites. Any external links to other websites are identifiable in the link tooltip as an external site. Some technical terms used in this statement are explained at the end of this page.

General Statement

Privacy Statement

Personal Information

Information given to us

Automatic Information

Cookies

Sharing of Information

How secure is the information?

What Info can I access online?

Links to other websites

Glossary of Technical Terms Used

Disclaimer

Amendments

More Information/Contact

General Statement
Laois County Council fully respects your right to privacy, and we will not collect any personal information about you on this website without your clear permission. Any information which you volunteer to Laois County Council’s websites will be treated with the highest standard of security and confidentiality, strictly in accordance with the Data Protection Acts, 1988 – 2018.

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Privacy Statement

Who we are and why do we require your information?

Laois County Council seeks to promote the economic, social and cultural development of the Council and in doing so contribute significantly to improving the quality of life of the people of County Laois.

The delivery of high quality services, tailored to meet the needs of all our customers, remains one of Laois County Council’s core objectives and is included in our Corporate Plan. This quality service includes not only the level and quality of service given to our customers, but also the quality of our decision-making processes, the efficiency and effectiveness of our corporate operations, standard of our facilities and our ability to adapt in an ever-changing environment.

In order to provide the most effective and targeted range of services to meet the needs of the citizens, communities and businesses of the county we will be required to collect, process and use certain types of information about people and organisations. Depending on the service being sought or provided the information sought may include ‘personal data’ as defined by the Data Protection Acts and by the general data protection Regulation (GDPR) and may relate to current, past and future service users; past, current and prospective employees; suppliers; and members of the public who may engage in communications with our staff. In addition, staff may be required, from time to time, to collect, process and use certain types of personal data to comply with regulatory or legislative requirements.

 

Why do we have a privacy statement?

Laois County Council has created this privacy statement in order to demonstrate our firm commitment to privacy and to assure you that in all your dealings with Laois County Council that we will ensure the security of the data you provide to us.

Laois County Council creates, collects and processes a significant amount of personal data in various multiple formats on a daily basis. Laois County Council’s commitment is that the personal data you may be required to supply to us is;

 

  • Obtained lawfully, fairly and in a transparent manner
  • Obtained for only specified, explicit and legitimate purposes
  • Adequate, relevant and limited to what is necessary for purpose for which it was obtained
  • Recorded, stored accurately and securely and where necessary kept up to date
  • Kept only for as long as is necessary for the purposes for which it was obtained.
  • Kept in a form which permits identification of the data subject
  • Processed only in a manner that ensures the appropriate security of the personal data including protection against unauthorised or unlawful processing.

Data protection Policy

Laois County Council has a detailed Data Protection Policy which goes in to more detail as how we as a public body are committed to ensuring the security of any personal data you provide to us.

Our policy is currently being updated and will be available for viewing here when updated.

What personal data do we need?

The types of personal data you may be asked to supply can be categorised as follows,

  • Contact details to allow for efficient communication
  • Details of your personal circumstances which you are required by law to supply as part of your application for a service offered by Laois County Council
  • Your own financial details which you are required by law to supply as part of your application for a service offered by Laois County Council

Contact Details

In order to communicate with you will be asked for contact details. You do not have to provide all contact details but providing more, such as email, phone, address, makes it easier to communicate.

Details of Personal Circumstances

If you wish to apply for a particular service from the local authority you will be asked for a varying amount of personal details specific to you and your family, in order to support your application. Laois County Council will set out the information we require in a series of separate and distinct application forms relevant to each service. Each service/business unit which will ask you for personal information will also provide you with a detailed privacy notice specific to that service which will detail the following,

  • Detail the specific and legitimate purpose for which the personal data is being sought,
  • The legal basis under which the information is required to be supplied,
  • Detail of the other organisations/bodies/entities that we will be required to share data with, or obtain data from, in order to provide the required service,
  • Details of how your personal data will be kept safe from unauthorised or unlawful processing,
  • Details of the period for which your personal data will be retained by Laois County Council and what will happen to it after the required retention period has expired.

Financial Details

If you wish to apply for a particular service from the local authority you may be asked for a varying amount of personal financial details specific to you and your family, in order to support your application. Laois County Council will set out the information we require in a series of separate and distinct application forms relevant to each service. As is the case with the other personal data outlined above the specific service/section of Laois County Council will address the necessity for the financial details as part of their specific privacy notice.

Records Retention Policy

Laois County Council has a detailed record retention policy which goes in to more detail of the time period for which your personal data will be retained by the Council and what will happen to it after the required retention period has expired.

Your Data Protection Rights

You have the right to request access to personal data held about you, obtain confirmation as to whether data concerning you exists, be informed of the content and source of data and check its accuracy. In addition, if the data held by us is found to be inaccurate you have the right to change, remove, block, or object to the use of, personal data held by Laois County Council. In certain circumstances blocking access to data may delay or remove access to a service where the data is required by law or for essential purposes related to delivery of a service to you. Please note that to help protect your privacy, we take steps to verify your identity before granting access to personal data. Our Data Access Policy is currently being updated and will be available here when finalised.

To exercise these rights you should take the following steps:

  1. Please complete the form which can be accessed by clicking on the following link
    Data Protection Access Request Form
  2. Forward your completed request to the Data Protection Officer at the following address:

Data Protection Officer,

Laois County Council,

County Hall,

Portlaoise,

Co. Laois.

R32EHP9

Or by email to: dataprotection@laoiscoco.ie

 

Please note that Laois County Council will not accept requests via telephone or text message.

In addition and in order to enable Laois County Council to confirm your identity, please provide a legible photocopy/scanned proof of your identity (e.g. photocopy of passport or drivers licence) and

Proof of address (photocopy/scanned copy of a utility bill with your named on it).

Please note that once your identity is verified, the documentation provided for that purpose will be securely destroyed.

Right of Complaint to the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner

If you are not satisfied with the outcome of the response you received from Laois County Council in relation to your request, then you are entitled to make a complaint to the Data Protection Commissioner who may investigate the matter for you.

The Office of the Data Protection Commissioner’s website is www.dataprotection.ie or you can contact their Office at:

Lo Call Number: 1890 252 231

E-mail:                  info@dataprotection.ie

Postal Address: Office of the Data Protection Commissioner

Canal House

Station Road

Portarlington, Co. Laois. R32 AP23.

Changes to our Privacy Policy
If we change our privacy policy, we will post the changes on this page, so you will be aware of the information we collect and how we use it at all times. Continued use of the service will signify that you agree to any such changes.

Cookies
This website does not use cookies, apart from temporary session cookies which enable a visitor’s web browser to remember which pages on this Website have already been visited. Cookies are pieces of text based information stored on a user’s hard drive while they are visiting a particular website. It contains simple information about the user’s identity but no personal information. When the user closes their browsers, the cookies are destroyed. You can set your computer not to accept cookies without a loss of functionality.

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What Personal Information About Customers Does Laois County Council Gather?
The information we learn from customers helps us personalise and continually improve your online experience at Laois.ie and our other websites. Here are the types of information we gather:

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Information You Give Us:
We receive and store any information you enter on our website or give us in any other way. You can choose not to provide certain information, but then you might not be able to take advantage of many of our features. Where a user voluntarily provides personal information, the data will be used for analysis, research or customer service purposes only. Any personal data provided by you to us will be held in accordance with the data protection principles set out in the Data Protection (Amendment) Act, 2003, the Data Protection Act, 1988, Electronic Commerce Act, 2000, and other relevant EU and Irish legislation.

We do not store any record of your credit card or Laser number. Any credit or debit card data is transferred directly from your computer to our card services partners’ server over a secure, encrypted connection. Our card services partners are the Local Government Computer Services Board (LGCSB) and RealEx.

Laois County Council assures you that the identity of all who contact us through this website is kept confidential: we do not rent, sell, or exchange mailing lists, or otherwise disclose such information to third parties, except as may be required by law, or through voluntary cooperation with law enforcement authorities if we judge that such cooperation is necessary to combat fraud or other crime.

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Automatic Information:
For general web browsing no personal information is revealed to us, although certain statistical information is available to us from our website logs. For example, like many websites, we obtain certain types of information when your web browser (browsers are pieces of software that allow you to access the internet; examples include: Internet Explorer, Netscape, Opera, Mozilla, etc.) accesses Laois.ie or our other websites. See below for examples. Also, to ensure the security of your online account information in our ePayments area, we use cookies to ensure that security is maintained by preventing the “hijacking” of your online identity (see below for more on cookies). The only information that is stored in that cookie is a key code which can be used by our server only during the current visit to verify your identity online. The cookie becomes unusable after either the user logs out or after 20 minutes of inactivity on our website.

Examples of information collected:

  • Internet Protocol (IP) address used to connect your computer to the internet (for example 192.168.88.21)
  • Email address — if you email any of our public email addresses
  • Computer and connection information such as browser type and version, operating system, platform, referring url and pages visited

Laois County Council will make no attempt to identify individual visitors or to associate the technical details listed above with any individual, except in cases where criminal activity has taken place (i.e. in response to a “hacking” incident). It is the policy of Laois County Council never to disclose such technical information in respect of individual website visitors to a third party (except for law-enforcement bodies and then only in response to illegal activity such as “hacking”; also our Internet Service Providor which records such data on our behalf and which is bound by confidentiality provisions in this regard), unless obliged to disclose such information by a rule of law. The technical information will be used only by Laois County Council, and only for statistical and other administrative purposes. You should not that technical details, which we cannot associate with any identifiable individual, do not constitute “personal data” for the purposes of the Data Protection Acts, 1988 & 2003.

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Cookies:
Cookies are alphanumeric identifiers that we transfer to your computer’s hard drive through your web browser to enable our systems to recognize your browser and to provide security while you access your online ePayment account information.

The “Help” portion of the toolbar on most browsers will tell you how to prevent your browser from accepting new cookies, how to have the browser notify you when you receive a new cookie, or how to disable cookies altogether. However, cookies allow you to take full advantage of some of Laois.ie’s features, and we recommend that you leave them turned on.

To ensure the security of your online account information in our ePayments area, we use cookies to ensure that security is maintained by preventing the “hijacking” of your online identity (see below for more on cookies). The only information that is stored in that cookie is a key code which can be used by our server only during the current visit to verify your identity online. The cookie becomes unusable after either the user logs out or after 20 minutes of inactivity on our website.

We have also added a cookie feature to the Online Planning Information Area to allow repeat users of this service to have the system remember their name and email address on return visits to the Documents page. This page clearly informs the user that a cookie will be created and gives them the option of not using cookies. These cookies are used only to facilitate the online declaration and are not used by the website for any other purpose.

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Does Laois.ie Share the Information it Receives?
Very rarely. In cases where there is a statutory requirement to share information with a government agency or other local authority or where your information must be shared with another agency in order to answer a customer query, then the minimum amount of information required will be shared in an appropriate manner. Generally, information is shared with other agencies as an aggregate rather than as a specific piece of data. For example, Laois County Council must make annual landfill returns which include the total tonnage collected but would not include information on individual customers utilizing our refuse collection services.

We may choose to release automatic information (see above) and other information received to the website to companies and organizations for fraud protection and credit risk reduction. Information of this type will only be shared about users who have caused or attempted to cause damage to Laois.ie or other council websites. This type of information would be shared only as a result of “hacking” attacks, fraud or other illegal activities.

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How Secure is Information About Me?
We do not collect credit card information or other payment methods via this website. All transactions are completed via the LGMA/RealEx online payment processing engine to ensure maximum protection for your account information.

It is important for you to protect against unauthorized access to your password and to your computer. Be sure to sign off when finished using our ePayments Account Viewer tool and to sign off from your computer when using a shared computer.

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What Information Can I Access Online?
Laois.ie and the other council websites will make as much public information available online as possible in order to improve the transparency of our organization.

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Links To Other Websites:
In order to make more information easier to find for our users, Laois.ie and the other Council websites link to content owned and hosted by other local authorities, government agencies, companies, organizations, etc. We are not responsible for the content or privacy practices of other websites. Any external links to other websites are clearly identifiable as such. We link to other websites that provide information relevant to members of the public living in Laois and to websites whose content we think would be of interest or assistance to those planning a visit to Laois. Laois County Council makes no promises or recommendations about the quality of services provided by groups owning the websites we link to.

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Glossary of Technical Terms Used:
Web browser
The piece of software you use to read web pages. Examples are Microsoft Internet Explorer, Chrome and Firefox.

IP Address
The identifying details for your computer (or your internet company’s computer), expressed in “internet protocol” code (for example 192.168.72.34). Every computer connected to the web has a unique IP address, although the address may not be the same every time a connection is made.

Cookies

See above

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Disclaimer:
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Laois County Council, its Councillors, directors, employees, servants and agents, affiliates or other representatives and their respective parent and subsidiary companies, shall not be liable in respect of any claims, emergencies, demands, causes of action, damages, losses, expenses, including without limitation, reasonable legal fees and costs of proceedings arising out of or in connection with the use and/or dissemination of personal information relating to you in accordance with this privacy policy and your consents.

You should be aware that where you link to another website from the Laois County Council or other Council websites, that Laois County Council has no control over that other website. Laois County Council has no responsibility for the privacy practices of other websites.

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Amendments:
Laois County Council reserves the right in its sole discretion to amend this privacy statement at any time, and you should regularly check this privacy statement for any amendments.

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More Information/Contact:
If you have any questions about this privacy statement, the practices or your dealings with this website, please contact us