Wessex Water Services Limited is committed to respecting and protecting your privacy.
Wessex Water Services Limited is owned by Wessex Water Limited and is part of the YTL group of companies. Our company registered office is at the Operations Centre, Claverton Down Road, Claverton Down, Bath BA2 7WW and our registered company number is 2366648.
Wessex Water Services Limited, as the company responsible for your personal information, is the Data Controller. We are registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office under registration Z7702288.
We jointly own Bristol Wessex Billing Services Limited (also known as Pelican Business Services) with Bristol Water plc. This company provides billing and customer service functions on our behalf which we explain in ‘How do we share your personal data’.
This Notice relates to the collection and use of the personal data of individuals, sole traders and individuals who are in business partnerships. It does not apply to information we collect or use in relation to companies or other corporate organisations.
This Notice applies to customers, contractors, suppliers, employees of contractors, developers, visitors to our locations and web-site, individuals making general enquiries about our services, any other member of the public we deal with whilst exercising our statutory powers, prospective employees, referees and other people whose details you provide us with.
Why we need you to give us information about yourself
This Privacy Notice lets you know how and why we collect and use your personal information. This includes what you tell us about yourself and what we might learn about you from others. This Privacy Notice explains how we do this and tells you about your rights.
We are a company that is licensed by the Water Services Regulation Authority (Ofwat) to supply water and/or sewerage services to you and we need your information to provide these services to you and charge you for the water and services you use.
We explain how we use your information in more detail in the rest of this Notice which we hope you’ll read carefully.
What personal data do we collect about you?
We may collect and use your personal data in the following ways.
Information you give us. You can give us personal information by filling in forms on our website
www.wessexwater.co.uk (our site) or by contacting us by phone, email or otherwise. This might be information you give us when you register to use our site, sign up as a customer, pay us (through our site or otherwise), sign-up to or use a service including using our Live Chat on-line service, get involved in discussion boards and other social media areas of our site or enter a competition, promotion or survey. We also have accounts on sites like Facebook and Twitter that you could use to give us personal information and through other on-line channels that become available to us. The information you give us may include your name, address, email address and phone number, date of birth, National Insurance number, financial and payment card information and personal opinions. Sometimes, we’ll need to collect and use information about your health or that of people living with you (including people who might be called ‘vulnerable’) if it makes a difference to what and how we bill you or so we can be better prepared to help you if there’s a problem when we’re supplying services. Please see the section on Priority Services for more information. If you are applying for a job with us then we’ll ask you to give us your personal details so we can use them in the recruitment process. Please see further in our section ‘If you are applying for a job with us’. If you make a claim against us or we make a claim against you, we may use information about that claim, for example, sums owing or medical information as part of the claims process.
Information we collect about you. As well as you giving us information, we may gather it when we are providing a service to you. This might be meter readings we collect or you give us so we know how much water you use. We will also collect information about connections to the mains water, sewers and drains (including performance information such as pressure and flooding history) and may also collect details of land ownership and occupancy of any property. We might also receive information about you from other utility companies if you have registered for priority services with them and they have your consent to share it with us. We may also access information about you that is already publicly available. We may also collect personal data given to us if we meet you in person, for example, during a visit to your home, site or business premises.
Information we receive about you from other sources. We work closely with a number of organisations we trust (including business partners, companies we use to provide technical, payment and delivery services, advertising networks, analytics providers, search information providers, credit reference agencies, debt recovery agencies) and may receive information about you from them. For instance, we may receive information from Bristol Wessex Billing Services Limited about you when they gather it on our behalf. We may also receive information about you from Save Water Save Money Limited where we have an agreement with them to fulfil a contract made by you after you have selected a ‘free’ product to save water. Save Water Save Money may contact you about their own marketing activities to confirm your preferences. We may also obtain information from organisations providing information about you to check if you are eligible for social tariffs.
Information we collect about you when you use our website. Whenever you visit our site we may automatically collect the following information: technical information, including the internet protocol (IP) address used to connect your computer to the internet, your login information, browser type and version, time zone setting, browser plug-in types and versions, operating system and platform; information about your visit, including the full uniform resource locators (URL) clickstream to, through and from our site (including date and time); products you viewed or searched for; page response times, download errors, length of visits to certain pages, page interaction information (such as scrolling, clicks, and mouse-overs), and methods used to browse away from the page and any phone number used to call our customer service number.
Information we receive from other water companies. We may also receive limited information about you (your supply point information and contact telephone number) from other water companies selling water to non-household customers so you can be notified of service-related issues including unplanned interruptions to water supply and emergency events. We may also receive information about you from other water companies through their legal obligations and legitimate interests where you receive water supply or sewerage services from them and us.
Why we need to use your information
We will be processing your information for a variety of different reasons but mainly to:
- supply water and/or sewerage services, maintain water quality, promote water efficiency and send bills to you under our legal obligations;
- provide additional help through our discount schemes where you have given your consent for us to do so;
- follow our legitimate interests to carry out or commission market research or customer satisfaction surveys (including through Trustpilot reviews) and to contact you by post with information about products and services offered by YTL group companies and information about WaterAid, the charity providing clean water and sanitation internationally; and
- exercise our powers as a water and sewerage company carrying out tasks in the public interest.
How do we use your personal data?
We’ll use your personal data in the following ways:
- to process and respond to requests, enquiries and complaints we receive from you;
- to provide products and services when you ask us to;
- to manage and administer your account;
- to carry out credit checks where appropriate (for more information please see the credit check section below);
- to communicate with you about services provided to you;
- to process payments and recover sums owed to us;
- to record the amount of water you use;
- to manage network operations, water supply and sewerage issues;
- to make sure our records are correct and up-to-date;
- to analyse trends and profiles;
- to carry out market analysis (on a non-personal basis);
- for audit purposes;
- to carry out customer satisfaction and other market research;
- to improve our products and services;
- to stop someone committing fraud or to help authorities investigate fraud;
- to comply with something the law says we must do;
- to provide you with information by post about products and services offered by companies in the YTL group (which includes our utilities switching service) and information about the aims and ideals of the charity WaterAid. If you do not want to receive this information you can opt out by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org or by writing to: the Data Protection Officer, the Operations Centre, Claverton Down Road, Claverton Down, Bath BA2 7WW;
- where you have said that we may do so, to recommend products and services by email or text that we believe will be of interest to you or contact you about offers or other marketing promotions;
- to contact you (including by SMS texts) about service related issues including interruptions to water supply, emergency events, water quality issues, planned maintenance, or major roadworks that could require road closures and, if you are a priority services customer, to make sure our records are up to date;
- to contact you (including by SMS texts and email) with updates when we are fixing a problem you have raised about our services;
- to make good our legal obligations to make payments under the Guaranteed Standards Scheme;
- to send newsletters, invitations and information to you if you are involved in our work in catchment management for the public water supply;
- to provide you with specific advice about using water efficiently based on how you tell us you use water in your home and to keep records of any devices we fit or leaks we find;
- to help us establish, manage or defend legal claims; and
- to help third parties to carry out any of the purposes above on our behalf.
How do we share your personal data?
We will not share your personal data unless we have a legitimate interest or lawful reason to so. If we do have to share your information then we’ll keep it to a minimum to let the person or organisation do what we’ve asked or as the law requires. We may need to share your information with other organisations as follows.
- We sometimes use agents and service providers to process personal information on our behalf. As mentioned above, we will share your information with Pelican Business Services to send out bills and handle billing enquiries. We also use other companies to send out letters, process payment card transactions, recover debts and to maintain our IT systems. Where we use other organisations to process your personal information, we will ensure that they have adequate security measures in place to safeguard it.
- We share your information with engineering contractors and consultants who carry out any construction or repair work on our behalf and contact you about it and with specialist companies who provide services on our behalf including promoting ways to help reduce water use.
- We will release your personal information when we’re required to do so for legal or regulatory purposes or as part of legal proceedings. This may include sharing your information with regulators such as our regulator, Ofwat, the Environment Agency and the Drinking Water Inspectorate. We may need to share it with the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), the CCW and WATRS (the water industry ombudsman service).
- We may be required under our licence to pass your contact information to a company selected by Ofwat to check on our customer service standards and you may be contacted to give your opinion. If you do not wish to be contacted in this way please contact us on
email@example.com - quoting "Ofwat".
- We may share your personal information with organisations outside of Wessex Water including Local Authorities, Police, Fire and Ambulance services in the event of an emergency (this may include information about your health if we think it could be in danger).
- We may give information we hold about you to a third-party as part of the process of selling one or more of our businesses, in which case we may provide your information to a prospective buyer.
- When we carry out credit checks, we pass your information to credit reference agencies. This information may also be accessed by third parties who carry out credit checks on you. Please see the section below on credit checks for more information.
- We pass your information to debt recovery companies for the collection of unpaid charges on our behalf and to benefit agencies where we seek a deduction from state benefits.
- We will disclose your personal data if we’re under a duty to share your personal data in order to comply with any legal duty, or in order to enforce our rights and other agreements; or to protect the rights, property, or safety of our customers or others. This includes exchanging information with other companies and organisations for the purposes of fraud protection and credit risk reduction.
- We may share your information with local authority Environmental Health Officers and the Environment Agency for enforcement purposes if you have not complied with notices we have issued to you under our legal obligations as a water supply and/or sewerage company.
- We may share information with advertisers and advertising networks or other carefully selected partners that require the data to select and serve relevant adverts to you and others. We do not disclose information about identifiable individuals to our advertisers, but we may provide them with aggregate information about our users. We may also use such aggregate information to help advertisers reach the kind of audience they want to target. We may make use of the personal data we have collected from you to enable us to comply with our advertisers' wishes by displaying their advertisement to that target audience.
- We share information with analytics and search engine providers that assist us in the making our site better and easier to find on the internet.
- We may share information with Wessex Searches, part of Wessex Water Enterprises Limited, which provides information about residential and commercial water and drainage searches to professional service providers such as solicitors and licensed conveyancers. We share information about the location of sewers, water pipes, etc. in relation to properties to assist with property sales, purchases and legal enquiries.
- We may transfer or share your information with other companies in the Wessex Water group for the purposes we’ve explained but if we’re going to use it for something other than supplying products and/or services, billing or for a reason we haven’t told you about or you would normally not expect then we will explain why by letting you know about the changes and, if we need your agreement, then we’ll check you are happy with this before we share it.
- If we need to investigate or defend a claim you make against us or we need to bring a potential claim against you we may share your personal data with your representative(s), our legal advisors, our insurance company or other professional advisors.
- We carry out customer satisfaction surveys and other market research through specialist companies which we ask to check what our customers think of the service we provide so we can act on the feedback to make our service better.
- As a water company, we are required to deal with requests for information made under the Environmental Information Regulations. If your personal information forms part of the response to the request, we will treat it as exempt from disclosure and not provide it in a form from which you could be identified.
- We share information with Market Operator Services Limited (MOSL) if you are a business, charity or public sector organisation to enable switching between water and waste water retailers. For more information about how personal data sharing arrangements and responsibilities between us work in practice please see our arrangements.
- We may share your information with providers where we wish to send a gesture of goodwill to you.
- If you receive water supply or sewerage services from another water company, we use a legitimate interest to share your information with them for charging purposes (including details of any meter readings relating to the service which we are legally obliged to provide)
To provide customers with additional help due to age, health, illness, disability or other reason we offer our Priority Services. This is a free service where we take into account your needs through the type of bills we send or by offering extra help in the event of a disruption to water supply or sewerage services.
We may need to contact you by phone, email, text or at your home if we need to provide services or assistance to you during works done or through a disruption to our services.
If you register as a Priority Services member your details and that of any nominee you appoint to act on your behalf will be held securely on our systems so we can use them to deliver services to meet your needs or best help you if our services are disrupted.
If we receive your details from someone else, for example, from a relative or carer, we will write to you to tell you that we have received them and give you the opportunity to opt out from being added to our register.
We are required by law to arrange priority for customers who may be considered vulnerable or at risk. The lawful basis under which we gather and use your personal information for these purposes is so we can carry out a task in the public interest. In carrying out this legal duty, we use information about your health so we can identify the best way to prioritise our help to you as would be expected by the public from a supplier of essential services.
If you would like to know more about the specific lawful grounds we use and how we safeguard sensitive information please ask to see a copy of our Processing of Special Categories of Personal Data and Criminal Offence Information Policy which is available from our data protection officer.
We will ask you for enough information about your health or situation for us to identify the help or services we need to provide and will only keep it for as long as you wish to remain on our register unless we have used it to provide services where we will keep records of those services for the purpose of defending prospective legal claims.
We rely on your agreement if you choose a nominee to receive your bills and be contacted on your behalf in the event of a disruption to our services. We will also contact your nominee to obtain their agreement for us to hold their information for such purposes.
Your rights relating to Priority Services
We will contact you from time to time to confirm whether you wish to continue to receive Priority Services but should you wish to opt out you can do so by contacting us on firstname.lastname@example.org at any time.
As we use your information to carry out a task in the public interest, we are not required to erase information held on your request. For more information about your data protection rights, please see the ‘Your Rights’ section
Both Wessex Water and Pelican Business Services may monitor and record calls we make and receive in our contact centres for quality, security and training purposes. We may keep recordings for up to 5 years in case we need to resolve a dispute or difference between us.
We share your personal information with credit reference agencies so we can keep your records up-to-date, check if debt risks apply to you and manage our debt collection process.
Information that we give to credit reference agencies includes information held in our records, such as your name, date of birth, address or other relevant information.
CCTV and capturing images
Our sites (including car parks) may be monitored by CCTV and your image may be recorded for security purposes if you visit any of our sites. We use signs to confirm where a CCTV system is used. Images are retained for 28 days and then deleted.
We may use cameras to monitor the environment and work we are carrying out within our locations and water courses. Notices are displayed at the entrance to our locations to confirm when this is happening. Our employees may also be equipped with and operate ‘body cameras’ so work can be recorded where water quality is concerned.
We operate unmanned aerial systems which involve the use of drones fitted with cameras that can be switched on remotely to record images of our locations for inspection, mapping and public relations purposes.
How long we retain the images captured is dependent on the purpose they are being recorded for but we may be required to keep records for inspections indefinitely.
The drones are operated by a licenced and commercially qualified drone pilot. When a drone is in use at our locations we display signs and identify its operator through wearing high visibility clothing. The drones are operated above land owned by YTL group or where we have obtained express permission from the landowner or relevant local authority and not knowingly within 50 metres of a member of the public.
If you have any concerns relating to privacy and the use of our drones, please contact the Data Protection Officer at ‘email@example.com’.
Where we store your personal data
All the information you give us is stored on our secure servers and if you chose to pay us by payment card then the transactions are encrypted. If we have given you a password (or you have chosen one) then you need to keep this password confidential. Please don’t share your password with anyone.
To get the best value for money when we improve our computer systems and websites, we use part of Wessex Water Group’s IT development services which are based outside of the European Economic Area. Some development projects may involve them working with your information. If this happens, we will take proper steps to keep your information safe through European Union approved contracts and by making sure your information stays protected within our own UK security arrangements using high standards of encryption in any transfer.
Unfortunately, sending information via the internet is not completely secure. Although we will do our best to protect your personal data, we cannot guarantee the security of your data sent to our site by email; any transmission is at your own risk. Once we have received your information, we will use strict procedures and security features designed to prevent someone who doesn’t have our authority to access it.
How long we need to keep your information
We will keep details about your use of our services for as long as you stay a customer of ours and then for 6 years after that as we may need to refer to it to sort out any differences or problems that arise after our relationship ends. We will need to keep anonymised information about water supply and/or sewerage at your property indefinitely due to our legal duty to keep these records. If you use our live chat service, this information is kept for three months.
If you are applying for a job with us
We will normally ask you to apply for a vacancy via our online recruitment system. During the recruitment process, the information you give us may include your name, age, contact details, details of your education, your employment history, emergency contact details, immigration status, financial information (if we need to carry out financial background checks), documentary evidence of your identity and national insurance number. You may decide to share other information with us if you think it is relevant to your application. Where appropriate and in accordance with UK laws, we may also collect information related to your health, diversity information or details of any criminal convictions which we will need your agreement to use.
If we ask to collect information which we need your consent to gather and use then we’ll tell you why we need this and ask for your agreement to use it and tell you about how you can withdraw your agreement but we’ll let you know more about this if we need to ask you to give us this information.
Information we collect about you. As well as you giving us information, we may gather it from other organisations holding it in connection with your previous employment.
Information we receive from other sources about you and which we may share with them. We may ask for a reference from a person you have given as a referee. We may obtain details about you from other third party sources like ‘Linked-In’ and other job-related websites. We also have accounts on sites like Facebook and Twitter that you could use to give us personal information and through other on-line channels that become available to us. We may also receive information about you from past employers, educational establishments, examining bodies and employment and recruitment consultants who contact us or we contact.
How we use your information. We will use your personal data:
- to store your details to contact you to process applications for roles and positions we advertise as current vacancies;
- to contact referees for references about you;
- to obtain details about criminal convictions if we are required to confirm these for the particular role you have applied for;
- to process, with your agreement, information about your health or details about criminal convictions so we can ensure the reliability of our employees and protect our reputation.
How long we will keep your information as a candidate. If you accept an offer of employment with us, we will keep your information for as long as you are employed by us and for six years after that. If your application is unsuccessful or you do not accept an offer of employment then we will keep only your application and assessment information. We will keep this for six months and will then destroy it.
If you are a referee or contact
How we use your information if you are a referee or contact. We will use your personal data:
- as a referee: to contact you if a candidate has given us your name as a referee so we can take up a reference; or
- as a contact: to get in touch with you if we have been provided with your details by a candidate as a contact in the event of an accident or emergency affecting them.
You have a series of rights to do with the information we hold about you. These are:
Your right to be informed – this Notice is an example of this. We may need to update this Notice if we need to do something different with your information and so we may change it on our site. We will also provide you with details about how we use your information when we collect it from you.
Your right to rectification - it is important that the information we are holding is accurate and up to date so if you think any of your information is incorrect or needs updating then let us know and we will update it as soon as we can.
Your right of ‘access’ - you have the right to request a copy of the personal information that we hold about you. We may ask for a copy of your passport or driving licence and for a copy of a document that shows your address so we can give your personal information out. Please email requests to firstname.lastname@example.org or contact the Data Protection Officer whose details appear at the end of this Notice.
We have a calendar month to respond to your request for information. If we need more information to process your request, we will contact you to let you know.
Your right to erasure – customers who are individuals have the right to request that their personal information be deleted where there is no longer a legitimate purpose for it being processed.
Your right to information about automated decision making - if a human being isn’t involved in making a decision using your information and it’s done automatically, then you can ask us about how the decision is made. We don’t make decisions like this at the moment but if we start then we’ll let you know and tell you about why we’re doing it.
Your right to restrict processing – you have the right to ask us to restrict or suppress our use of your personal data. If we agree that we should stop processing it, we will still hold it but will not use it.
Your right to object – if you don’t want us to use your personal information any more then you can ask us to stop what we’re doing with it. Please bear in mind though that we need it to provide services to you and we may need to keep your data for a certain amount of time as we’ve explained above. You can also ask us not to use your personal data for marketing purposes. You can exercise this right at any time by contacting us at email@example.com or by contacting our Data Protection Officer whose details are at the end of this Notice. If you ask to stop using your personal information then we will contact you to confirm the position as there may be some circumstances where we will have to continue using it. To opt out of updates via SMS, text STOP to 84600.
Links to other websites
Our site may, from time to time, contain links to and from the websites of our partner networks, advertisers and affiliates. If you follow a link to any of these websites, please note that these websites have their own privacy notices or policies and that we do not accept any responsibility or liability for these notices. Please check these notices before you submit any personal data to these websites.
Changes to our privacy notice
We will update this privacy notice from time to time to keep you informed of any changes to the ways in which we use your personal data. Any changes we may make to our privacy notice in the future will be posted on our site and, where appropriate, notified to you by email. Please check back frequently to see any updates or changes to our privacy notice.
If you’re not happy and have issues with the way we’ve dealt with your information or your rights then please let us know by contacting us as below. If you remain unhappy with our response then you can ask the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) to look into what we’ve done. They can be reached at ico.org.uk, by phone on 0303 123 1113 or by writing to ICO, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF.
Questions, comments and requests regarding this privacy notice are welcomed and should be emailed to
firstname.lastname@example.org or please write to:
The Data Protection Officer
Wessex Water Operations Centre
Claverton Down Road
Version 2: 07/2018