Privacy & cookie notice
We are Northumbrian Water Limited. In the North East of England we are known as Northumbrian Water and we provide our customers with both water and waste-water (sewage) services. In the South East of England we are known as Essex & Suffolk Water and we provide our customers with water services only. We are part of Northumbrian Water Group Limited and we are registered under the Companies Acts (Reg. No. 2366703). Our registered office is Northumbria House, Abbey Road, Pity Me, Durham DH1 5FJ. We also have a variety of specialist services which operate under different names; Analytical & Environmental Services (AES), and Northumbrian Water Property Solutions.
WHAT IS THIS PRIVACY STATEMENT ABOUT?
To supply our customers with our services we need to use information about you, and some of that may be personal or private. For example we may need to know your name and address, details of how you would like to be contacted (e.g. your mobile phone number), or how you would like to pay for the services we provide you.
As we do this, we’d like you to take some time to read this privacy statement. It will explain what information we might collect about you, why we collect it, what we may use it for, and who we may give it to. We’ll also explain your rights towards your information and how we look after it while we have it.
WHAT INFORMATION DO WE COLLECT ABOUT YOU?
The information we collect about you may vary based on what service we provide to you. Typically we need details like:
- Your name and address so we know who you are and what services you need from us
- Your contact details like phone number or email so that we can keep in touch with you about our services and your account
- Your bank account or other financial details so we can manage your payment for our services
If you need special help or consideration, we may also need information about your health or social circumstances. We’ll only collect this sort of information where you let us know that we need to make provisions to meet your special needs in providing you with our services.
We only collect information about you that we need to ensure you get the best service from us. We respect your privacy and we try to minimise what we do collect.
HOW DO WE COLLECT INFORMATION ABOUT YOU?
We prefer to collect the information we need directly from you. That way, you know what we have, and we can be sure you’ve provided us with the most accurate and up-to-date information. We will usually do this:
- When you set up your account with us
- When you contact us for any reason
- If you complete an online form, enter a competition or complete a survey
- If you use any of our facilities, e.g. Kielder holiday lodges/caravans; fishing permits or to book tickets for events such as out Kielder Winter Wonderland
Where absolutely necessary, we may occasionally collect information about you from other ‘third parties’ such as credit agencies or the electoral roll.
WHAT DO WE DO WITH THE INFORMATION WE COLLECT ABOUT YOU?
We use your information in various ways, such as to:
- Meet the purposes that you provided your information for
- Provide you with the services you want
- Let you know about goods or services we feel would be beneficial to you
- Administer your account, including
- Letting you know of any work we may be conducting in your area
- Seeking your views on any service we’ve provided
- Dealing with any problems, enquiries, or complaints you may have
- Resolving unpaid bills
- Prevent fraud
- Keep our records accurate and up to date
- Create statistical information, market research, analysis and customer profiling to better manage and run our business
- Comply with any legal obligations we may have
WHO DO WE SHARE YOUR INFORMATION WITH?
We appreciate that you have provided your information to us and may not want us to share it with other people or organisations, however sometimes it is necessary for us to do so.
We only share your information where we are permitted or required to by law, or where you have requested us to do so. We may share your information with, for example:
- Any of your family, associates, or someone who represents you, where you have asked us to do so
- Employment and recruitment agencies, or current, past and prospective employers, where you require a reference from us
- Our employees who provide you with our services
- Carefully selected contractors and specialists to help us provide you with our services
- Credit reference, and fraud prevention, agencies in order to help prevent and detect fraud, or as part of our debt collection process.
- External agencies like the police, fire service, or local councils in the event of an emergency situation, such as under the Civil Contingencies Act 2004.
- Any person or organisation where we are required to because of a Court order, legal duty, or statutory obligation
We are careful to minimise such sharing.
Although we are a UK company, we may sometimes share your information with an organisation, such as a contractor working on our behalf, who is outside the UK. Such companies may also be outside of the Europe. We may do this, but we will only do so where we are permitted to by law.
Whenever we share your information we do everything we can to ensure it is protected from misuse or loss.
HOW DO WE LOOK AFTER AND SECURE YOUR INFORMATION?
When we use information about you we take all reasonable efforts to do so fairly and lawfully.
We think it likely that our customers know we use information about them, and we provide notices of such wherever we can.
We never use information about you unless it is lawful for us to do so and we have a clearly defined need or purpose.
When we collect information about you we ensure that we minimise what we collect. We try to collect enough accurate and up to date information to ensure we provide you with the excellent, efficient customer service you demand and no more. We try not to keep your information for longer than we need it and we ensure that the records we have about you are managed properly and deleted promptly and securely when we no longer need them.
We make every effort to ensure your rights towards your information, which we detail below.
We take appropriate care to secure the information we hold about you. We have robust technical security such as passwords and information encryption. We also have policies and procedures to ensure your information is only available to our employees who need to see it to do their job, and we train those employees appropriately.
Also, we establish robust procedures and contracts to extend these protections to any other person or organisation we may need to give your information to.
In everything we do with your information we try to be fair, lawful, and open, and we take seriously our obligations towards your privacy and the protection of information we may hold about you.
ON OUR WEBSITES
When visiting our websites, you may also be providing us with certain information via our use of website ‘cookies’. You can find out more about this by reading our Cookie Statement here.
When you enter data onto secure areas of our websites, a Secure Socket Layer (SSL) is initiated. A SSL is a security device which ensures that any data which you enter is encrypted during transmission over the internet. Encryption means the data is encoded so that it is not legible until such time as we decode it.
No data transmission over the internet can ever be entirely secure. While we do our best to protect your personal information, we cannot guarantee its security and you must be aware of this when using our websites.
Our websites may contain links to other websites. If you follow a link to any of these websites, please note that these websites have their own Terms & Conditions and privacy policies and that we cannot accept responsibility for their content. This privacy statement applies only to our website.
BY EMAIL AND PHONE
If you have contacted us by email, or provided an email address, we may use that to contact you if we need to.
You should also be aware that information conveyed by email could be deliberately or accidentally intercepted or corrupted. Whilst we make every effort to ensure that emails we send to you are free from viruses this cannot be guaranteed. We recommend that you scan all email for viruses with appropriate and frequently updated virus checking software.
If you have given us you phone number (landline or mobile), we may use it to contact you if we need to, including sending texts. If you call our customer contact line, we also record your phone call, for security and training purposes, and to ensure we record the details of your contact.
Please let us know if your mobile phone number or email address changes so that we can keep this information up to date.
The Data Protection Act 1998 gives you certain rights towards your personal information. We take all reasonable efforts to ensure we allow you to exercise those rights.
You have the right to see all the personal information we hold about you
We’ll handle routine enquiries as part of our usual customer service. If you want to see more of the information that we have about you, you can make a data subject access request.
Northumbrian Water customers can write to us at:
PO Box 200
Essex & Suffolk Water customers can write to us at:
Essex & Suffolk Water
PO Box 600
To help you make your request, we have produced a form which you can find on our website here. We may reply to you where we need further information to help respond effectively to your request.
To ensure that we only give your information out to you and not someone else, you will need to provide us with two current forms of identification.
We also charge a £10 fee for each request (as we are allowed to by law). Please pay by cheque made payable to Northumbrian Water Ltd.
Once we receive your written request, any clarifications, identification, and £10 cheque we respond as soon as we can within forty calendar days.
You have the right to stop us causing you ‘damage or distress’
Unless you have consented to us using your information, or have a contract with us, or we are acting to comply with a legal obligation or in a life or death situation, you can object to us using your personal information in a way that causes you ‘substantial and unwarranted damage or distress’.
Damage means that we will use or have used your information in a way that caused you some loss or harm which we shouldn’t have.
Distress means that we will use or have used your information in a way that caused you some upset or anguish which was more than an annoyance.
You can write to us and ask us to stop using your information in that way. We will respond within 21 days.
You have the right to have your information corrected
We take all reasonable steps to ensure that the information we have about you is accurate and up to date.
If you think that what we have is not accurate or up to date, please tell us as soon as possible and we will ensure it is corrected.
You have the right to stop us direct marketing to you
We’re keen to promote efficient water use and we may send you offers or make you aware of products that help with this. Also, from time to time we may tell you about other offers we think may interest you.
We may do this, or we may share your information with carefully selected partners who offer services or products that we think you may be interested in. Every time we contact you about such offers we will give you the opportunity not to hear about anymore.
If you don’t want to receive such offers at all, please let us know via our online form here, by calling 0345 733 5566, or;
Northumbrian Water customers can write to us at:
PO Box 200
Essex & Suffolk Water customers can write to us at:
Essex & Suffolk Water
PO Box 600
Also, we will not send you these offers by phone if you have registered with the Telephone Preference Service or by mail if you have registered with the Mailing Preference Service.
Please note though, that you may still receive non-personalised marketing material through your letterbox.
YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO STOP US TAKING ‘AUTOMATED DECISIONS’ ABOUT YOU
We do not routinely use software to take automated decisions about you.
NORTHUMBRIAN WATER AND DATA PROTECTION
The Data Protection Act 1998 governs how we may use your personal information. We are registered under the Act and regulated by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).
Information Commissioner’s Office
(Tel: 01625 545 700)
CHANGES TO THIS STATEMENT
From time to time, we may amend this privacy statement to reflect changes in the law, guidance from the ICO, our experience of handling your information, or for other legitimate reasons. We will do this by posting the amended privacy statement on this website. We therefore suggest you check this statement from time to time to ensure you are aware of the latest version.
WHAT ARE COOKIES EXACTLY?
Cookies make your experience of using web sites faster and easier. They are not programs and cannot carry viruses or install malware on your computer. Cookies allow web sites to create a customised view of pages to which you navigate. For example, they are commonly used to authenticate or identify registered users of a website without requiring them to sign in each time they access it. Other uses include maintaining a ‘shopping basket’ of goods a user has chosen to purchase, site personalisation (presenting different pages to different users) and tracking the pages a user has visited on a site for analysis purposes.
A cookie often includes a unique identifier, which is a randomly generated number. This is stored on your device’s hard drive. Many cookies are automatically deleted after you finish using a website.
Cookies may come with or without an expiry date. Cookies without an expiry date (session cookie) exist until the browser is closed, while cookies with an expiry date may be stored by the device until the expiry date passes.
You can restrict or block cookies set by NWL but this may limit your use of some functionality, such as filling in forms and getting access to password protected areas that are in use across any of the sites we manage. However, most things you do on our site will still be possible even with cookies disabled.
Cookies are sent to your browser (whether you use Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Safari or any other browser) by a website and then stored in the cookies directory of your device.
The table below explains the cookies we may use on our website and why.
Cookie: Persistent (30 days)
Purpose: Decides whether or not to display in Text Only mode. A string of either “FullMedia” or “Text” in its value.
Cookie:Persistent (10 years)
Purpose: Webtrends First Party Cookie. Site and visitor identifier and 2 timestamps.
Purpose: Links the session to a server location in Newcastle or Edinburgh. Encrypted data for current user session.
Purpose:For test purposes only. Contains the string “test”.
Cookie:Persistent (1 year)
Purpose: To ensure that the “unique visitors” figure is correct [i.e discount repeat visits]. 2 pieces of data (i) randomly assigned customer ID (ii) randomly assigned session number.
Cookie: Persistent (1 year)
Purpose: Optional auto login cookie, to store login data. Stores login information.
Purpose: For items purchased to be taken to checkout. Data related to items being purchased.