Electoral services

Who we are and what we do

The London Borough of Redbridge Council is a data controller under the UK Data Protection law as we collect and process personal information about you in order to provide electoral services and meet our statutory obligations. Please see below why we need your information.

Any questions regarding our privacy practices should be sent by email to-

Data Protection Officer
8th Floor Rear
255-259 High Road
Ilford, Essex IG1 1NY

Email: data.protection@redbridge.gov.uk

Tel: 0208 708 3890


Why we need your information and how we use it

We have a statutory obligation to collect and process personal data for the purposes of delivering electoral services. The following legislations allow us to do this:

  • Representation of the People Act 1983
  • Representation of the People Regulations 2001
  • The Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013

Your information will be used for the functions of the Electoral Services Department.  The functions of the department are undertaken on behalf of the Electoral Registration Officer (ERO)/Returning Officer (RO) who is a data controller and collects your personal data from you for the purpose of:

  • registering your right to vote
  • processing any absent (postal or proxy) voting requests
  • producing and maintaining an accurate register of electors
  • delivering elections and referendums

What type of information is collected from you

We keep records about potential and actual electors, voters, citizens, candidates and their agents, staff employed at an election and the people we need to pay. These may be written down or kept on a computer.

These records may include:

  • basic details about you – for example, your name, address, date of birth and nationality
  • unique identifiers (such as your NI number)
  • scanned application forms & dates of any letters of correspondence
  • copies or details of proof of identity and eligibility
  • notes about any relevant circumstances that you have told us
  • your previous or any redirected address
  • the other occupants in your home
  • if you are over 76 or under 18
  • whether you have chosen to opt out of the Open version of the Register of Electors
  • your signature
  • contact details including telephone numbers and email addresses
  • previous or forwarding addresses

In addition, if you work for the Returning Officer on election duties or for the Electoral Registration Officer for registration duties these may also include:

  • tax status
  • next of kin/emergency contact details
  • details of previous employment

If you are a candidate at an election, an appointed agent at an election or a campaigner we may also hold these details:

  • political party affiliation
  • campaign group affiliation

Who your information may be shared with (internally and externally)

To verify your identity, the data you provide on any application form to register to vote will be processed by the Individual Electoral Registration Digital Service (IER-DS) managed by the Cabinet Office. As part of this process, your data will be shared with the Department of Work and Pensions and the Cabinet Office suppliers that are data processors for the Individual Electoral Registration Digital Service. You can find more information about this on the GOV.UK website.

The Electoral Registration Officer publishes two versions of the register:

The electoral register lists the names and addresses of everyone who is registered to vote in public elections. The register is used for electoral purposes, such as making sure only eligible people can vote. It is also used for other limited purposes specified in the law, such as:

  • detecting crime (e.g. fraud)
  • calling people for jury service
  • checking credit applications

The open register is an extract of the electoral register but is not used for elections. It can be bought by any person, company or organisation. For example, it is used by businesses and charities to confirm name and address details. Your name and address will be included in the open register unless you ask for them to be removed. Removing your details from the open register does not affect your right to vote.

If you are concerned that having your name or address on the electoral register may affect your safety, there could be other options available to you, such as anonymous registration. In certain limited circumstances, you can register without your name and address showing on the register.

The electoral register is published once a year (usually each December) and is updated on the first working day of each month between January and September.  The law restricts who can be supplied with the electoral register, extracts of the electoral register and absent voter records.  Details of who can be provided with this data can be found on the Electoral Commission website.

Anyone can inspect the electoral register because it is a public document. Inspection can be made of hard copies held by Electoral Services. Information is listed in address order for each polling district.

  • Inspection of the register is conducted under supervision
  • Handwritten notes may be made during inspection, but no copies of photographs of the register are allowed
  • Any information recorded must not be used for direct marketing purposes, in accordance with data protection legislation, unless it has been published in the open register
  • Anyone who fails to observe these conditions may be charged a penalty of up to £5,000.

We also have to share your information with our software providers and contracted printers for the purpose of carrying out our duties of electoral registration and delivering elections and referendums.

Staffing data may be shared with other Returning Officers and Electoral Registration Officers as appropriate.  All staff details will also be shared with the payroll team and HMRC in order to make payments.

Details of candidates, election agents, subscribers to nomination papers and other political campaigners may be published where the law requires.

The data you provide is held in electoral registers which are managed by Electoral Registration Officers The full register is published once a year and is updated every month and can only be supplied to the following people and organisations:

  • British Library
  • UK Statistics Authority
  • Electoral Commission
  • Boundary Commission for England
  • Jury Summoning Bureau
  • elected representatives (MP, MEPS, Local Councillors)
  • police and Crime Commissioner
  • candidates standing for elections
  • local and national political parties and registered campaigners
  • the council
  • parish and community councils
  • police forces and the National Crime Agency
  • public library or local authority archive services
  • government departments or bodies
  • credit reference agencies
  • National Fraud Initiative
  • Partner Electoral Registration and Returning Officers

Returning Officers have statutory duties to collect and retain information from:

  • candidates and their agents
  • staff employed at an election
  • voters

This information may be kept in either digital format (i.e. data within a software system or as scanned copies of documents) or hard copy printed format or both.


How long we keep your information (retention period)

The Electoral Registration Officer and Returning Officer are obliged to process your personal data in relation to preparing for and conducting elections. Your details will be kept and updated in accordance with our legal obligations and in line with statutory retention periods.

Marketing and E-Newsletters

Please see the relevant section of the Corporate Privacy Notice.

Business Intelligence, Profiling and Automated-Decision making

Please see the relevant section of the Corporate Privacy Notice.

Protecting your information

Please see the relevant section of the Corporate Privacy Notice.

How you can access, update or correct your information

The Data Protection law gives you the right to apply for a copy of information about yourself.  This is called a ‘Subject Access Request'.

Visit our website to find out more about how to make a Subject Access Request.

The accuracy of your information is important to us to be able to provide relevant services more quickly.   We are working to make our record keeping more efficient.  In the meantime, if you change your address or email address, or if any of your circumstances change or any of the other information we hold is inaccurate or out of date, please email us at electoral.services@redbridge.gov.uk  or write to us at:

Electoral Services
128-142 High Road
Ilford
IG1 1DD

Your information choice and rights

Please see the relevant section of the Corporate Privacy Notice.

Information Commissioner’s Office

Please see the relevant section of the Corporate Privacy Notice.

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