Privacy policy

Last Reviewed: January 2021

At Citizens Advice we collect and use your personal information to  help solve your problems, improve our services and tackle wider  issues in society that affect people’s lives.

We only ask for the information we need. We always let you decide what you’re  comfortable telling us, explain why we need it and treat it as confidential.

When we record and use your personal information we:

  • only access it when we have a good reason
  • only share what is necessary and relevant
  • don’t sell it to anyone

There are situations when we may share information about your case without  your consent – however we would always ensure that there is a legal basis for  sharing. Here are some examples of situations;

  • To comply with the law – for example, if a court orders us to share information. This is called ‘legal obligation’
  • To protect someone’s life – for example, sharing information with a paramedic if a client was unwell at our office. This is called ‘vital interests’
  • To carry out our legitimate aims and goals as a charity – for example, to create ‘non client specific’ statistics for our national research. This is called ‘legitimate interests’
  • To carry out a contract we have with you – for example, if you’re an employee we might need to store your bank details so we can pay you. This is called ‘contract’
  • To defend our legal rights – for example, sharing information with our legal advisors if there was a complaint that we gave the wrong advice

We handle and store your personal information in line with the law – including  the General Data Protection Regulation and the Data Protection Act 2018.

You can check our main Citizens Advice policy for how we handle most of your  personal information.


This page covers how we, as your local charity, handle your information locally  in our offices

How EFD ask for permission to collect your data

∙ If we speak to you over the phone, we will explain how we use your  information and ask for your permission to store it.

∙ If we speak to you via Webchat, you will be asked to give consent prior via the pre chat survey before speaking with an Assessor.

∙ If you are referred to us via another Citizens Advice, referring organisation or affiliated project,  your consent will be collected  and/or be recorded using a tick online consent box on  ‘Casebook’, our Citizens Advice Case Management system.

What information will we ask for?

We’ll only ask for information that’s relevant to your problem. Depending on  what you want help with, this might include:

your name and contact details – so we can keep in touch with you  about your case

personal information – for example about family, work, or financial  circumstances

details about services you get that are causing you problems – like  energy or post

details of items or services you’ve bought, and traders you’ve dealt  with

information like your gender, ethnicity or sexual orientation

If you don’t want to give us certain information, you don’t have to. For example,  if you want to stay anonymous we’ll only record information about your problem  and make sure you’re not identified.

How EFD Citizens Advice use your information

The main reason we ask for your information is to help solve your problem. We  only access your information for other reasons if we really need to – for  example:

∙ for training and quality purposes

∙ to investigate complaints

∙ to get feedback from your about our services

∙ to help us improve our services


Working on your behalf

When you give us authority to act on your behalf, for example to help you with a  Universal Credit claim, we’ll need to share information with that third party. We  will only share information with your consent.

We regularly work with the Department for Works and Pension, Essex  District Council, HM Revenue and Customs, Utility Companies, Housing  Associations, Credit Card and Loan companies, Banks and GP practices.

How EFD Citizens Advice store your information 

Whether you get advice face to face, over the phone or by email, our adviser will  log all your information, correspondence, and notes about your problem into our  secure case management system – called Casebook.

For further information click on the link to see our  national Citizens Advice privacy policy

How EFD Citizens Advice share your information

For further information click on the link to see our  national Citizens Advice privacy policy

Contact EFD Citizens Advice about your information

If you have any questions about how your information is collected or used, you  can contact our office.



You can contact us to:

  • find out what personal information we hold about you
  • correct your information if it’s wrong, out of date or incomplete
  • request we delete your information
  • ask us to limit what we do with your data – for example, ask us not to share it if you haven’t asked us already
  • ask us to give you a copy of the data we hold in a format you can use to transfer it to another service
  • ask us to stop using your information

You can also complain to the ICO if you are unhappy with how we have used your data.

The ICO’s address:
Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Helpline number: 0303 123 1113

ICO website:

Who’s responsible for looking after your personal information?

The national Citizens Advice charity and your local Citizens Advice operate a  system called Casebook to keep your personal information safe. This means  they’re a ‘joint data controller’ for your personal information that’s stored in our  Casebook system.

Each local Citizens Advice is an independent charity, and a member of the  national Citizens Advice charity. The Citizens Advice membership agreement also  requires that the use of your information complies with data protection law.

You can find out more about your data rights on the Information Commissioner’s  website.