Privacy notice

This privacy notice explains how we process your personal data when you interact with us and information about your rights under data protection legislation.

We reserve the right to update this privacy notice. Changes apply as soon as they are published. We recommend that you visit this page regularly to find out about any updates that may have been made.

Page updated: 10 April 2024

Contact us

We are Maidstone Borough Council of Maidstone House, King Street, Maidstone, Kent, ME15 6JQ. We are the “data controller”. This means that we are responsible for deciding how we hold and use your personal data.

You can find us in the Information Commissioner’s register of organisations who have paid the data controller fee. Our reference number is Z4752882.

If you have any questions about this privacy notice or if you would like to exercise your rights, please contact the Data Protection Officer:

Maidstone Borough Council
ME15 6JQ

Phone: 01622 602000
Email: Data Protection Officer

Your rights

You have rights under data protection legislation. Full details of these rights can be found on our data protection page.

We normally have to comply when you tell us that you want to exercise your rights. There are some legal exemptions. These will be explained if an exemption applies to your request.

There is no charge for you to exercise your rights. We may refuse your request or make a reasonable charge if your request is manifestly unfounded or excessive.

Before we deal with your request we may ask you for proof of your identity. After receiving your proof we will process your request as soon as possible. We will respond within one calendar month in most cases.

How to complain

If you are not happy with how we are processing your personal data, you can complain to us using the contact details above. If you are still unhappy after contacting us, you can contact the relevant competent supervisory authority - the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). You can contact the ICO:

Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane

Phone: 0303 123 1113
Visit the ICO website

Your obligations

It is important that you tell us if your personal data changes while you are using our services. This will mean that the data we hold about you is kept up to date and accurate.

Administration of benefits

Types of personal data we collect


We process the following types of personal data:

  • name
  • address
  • forwarding address
  • phone number
  • email address
  • date of birth
  • periods of liability
  • financial information
  • bank name, sort code and account name and number
  • employment
  • National Insurance
  • identification
  • visas
  • landlord and agent details
  • criminal background
  • court proceedings
  • landlord and agent details (where applicable)
  • probate details
  • children's gender, disabilities and date of birth in the household (where applicable)

Where applicable and necessary to the investigation we also hold the following types of special category data:

  • medical details including health information where it pertains to an exemption/discount or benefit and details of your doctor(s)
  • disability details where it pertains to an exemption and/or discount or benefit
  • race and ethnic origin

Why we have your personal data and how we get it


We use your personal data to:

  • Process Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit claims.
  • Process Discretionary Housing Payments.
  • Conduct Housing Benefit investigations.
  • Process referral to the Supported Housing Improvement Programme (SHIP) Team. This project is designed to establish the quality of existing and planned accommodation and support. It will verify that public funds are being used appropriately. The overarching intent is to improve the standard of provision for vulnerable people and to guard against exploitation of these people by unsuitable landlord/providers.
  • Obtain and validate information provided against records held by the Department of Work and Pensions and Cabinet Office.
  • Data derived from DWP and HMRC will be used in the testing or development environment.
  • Conduct reviews on into the application of exemptions and discounts for benefits.
  • Initiate court proceedings arising where necessary.
  • Retain a record so we can audit, and quality assure our services, and to inform decision-making about our services.
  • Plan and manage our services and to meet the requirements of external regulators.
  • Keep visitors and staff safe and secure, we use CCTV at our premises.

We also use cookies and other analytic technologies to give you a better experience on our website and to improve the relevance of online advertising you see. For more information, please see our cookie notice.

Keeping your personal data

  • data sent via e-mail will be kept for 7 years from the date received
  • data arising from evidence and investigations will be kept for 6 years plus 1 year from the end of the service being provided to you
  • CCTV footage will be kept for 30 days

Our lawful basis


Our lawful basis to process your personal data is both legal obligation and in the public interest. Our lawful basis for processing special category data is substantial public interest. Dependent on the investigation, our lawful basis is in accordance with the following legislation:

  • Local Government Finance Act 1992 as amended
  • Council Tax Administration and Enforcement Regulations 1992
  • Local Government Finance Act 1988 as amended
  • Non-Domestic Rates Regulations
  • Non-Domestic Rates Act 2023
  • Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014

For Supported Housing Improvement Programme (SHIP) referrals:

  • Inspect local accommodation conditions and enforce improvements and removals of hazards where needed (Housing Act 2004).
  • Research and collect evidence on the provider and scheme in relation to a claim for Housing Benefit by an individual, to assess whether the eligibility conditions have been met for specified accommodation (as per regulation 86 of the Housing Benefit Regulations 2006). The power to administer HB comes from the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992.
  • Increase standards of support exempt accommodation in line with the Supported Housing (Regulatory Oversight) Act 2023.

For discretionary Housing payments:

  • the party payment is paid to under section 8 of Discretionary Housing Payment Policy

Our lawful basis to capture CCTV images of members of the public is public interest.

Sharing your personal data


Your personal data will only be shared with other organisations when necessary and if the law lets us, and we always aim to share the minimal data as is necessary.

We share your personal data with the following parties where it is necessary for us to do so:

  • landlords
  • valuation office
  • medical practitioners
  • fraud and compliance investigators
  • council tax officers
  • enforcement officers
  • HM prisons
  • pensions service
  • other local authorities
  • central government, including cabinet office and department of work and pensions
  • police
  • housing associations
  • credit agencies
  • social workers
  • support workers
  • Supported Housing Improvement Programme (ship) at Medway Council
  • Destin
  • Intec
  • National Anti-Fraud Network – NAFN
  • Kent Intelligence Network
  • Locta
  • Retriever
  • Xantura
  • Policy in Practice
  • South East water

We may also share personal data with anti-fraud and law enforcement agencies for the prevention and detection of crime.

Storing your personal data


The council stores your personal data in the UK. We do not transfer your personal data to any other countries including countries in the EU and EEA (European Economic Area).

Third parties may transfer your personal data outside the UK. Please refer to their privacy notices for more details.