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PRIVACY POLICY FOR OUR CUSTOMERS

We will only use personal information we hold about you that we obtain through our website, over the telephone, via social media or otherwise in accordance with this privacy policy. Please read our privacy policy carefully. We take the privacy of all our customers very seriously and are committed to providing you with a service which meets your requirements and protects your privacy.

This privacy policy explains how we may obtain personal information about you and how we will process that personal information from time to time. If you visit a website operated by a third party through a hyperlink included in our website, your information may be used differently by the operator of the linked website. We reserve the right to modify our privacy policy from time to time. When this happens, the homepage on our website will contain a link to or refer to the modified notice.

The licensed electricity distribution companies in the Northern Powergrid group are Northern Powergrid (Northeast) Limited and Northern Powergrid (Yorkshire) plc, which we refer to as “Northern Powergrid”, “we” or “us”, as appropriate, in this privacy policy.

What INFORMATION ABOUT YOU WILL WE USE?

The categories of personal information we use include:

  • Your name, address, telephone number(s), e-mail address and other contact details, including social media details;
  • The meter point administration number associated with your property, which relates to the supply of electricity to you through that meter point;
  • Your bank account, credit card and/or debit card details in circumstances where you pay us to provide a service to you;
  • Details we may need in order to design and install a connection to our electricity distribution network that you have asked us to make to your property; and
  • Your health and/or medical condition or other information such as your age and whether you have children under the age of five, which means you are eligible to be included on our Priority Services Register.

We may collect personal information about you that has been obtained from a number of sources. Those sources include telephone discussions with you, which we may record for quality and training purposes, written information you have sent to us, other communications we have with you, such as by e-mail and via social media and our website, the electricity suppliers and gas transporters, organisations that provide such information and the electoral register.

We will use your personal information in accordance with this privacy policy, regardless of the source from which we obtain that information.

WHY WE COLLECT PERSONAL INFORMATION ABOUT YOU AND HOW WE USE THAT INFORMATION

We will not use any automated decision-making in our processing of your personal data and will collect personal information about you in the following circumstances:

a)You are the owner or occupier of a property that is connected to our electricity distribution network.

We will collect and process such personal information as is necessary for the performance of the contract you have with us for the maintenance of that connection. This includes providing our services to you under that contract, such as:

  • Providing you with information about your power supply and with updates regarding our work to restore your supply in the event of a power cut;
  • If you ask for our assistance with work you are carrying out at or alterations you are making to your property; and
  • Maintaining and testing our various IT systems so that we can operate an efficient and economical system of electricity distribution in accordance with our statutory duty under the Electricity Act 1989.

We consider that we have a legitimate interest in processing your personal information in respect of the operation, maintenance and management of our electricity distribution network and to fulfil our obligations under our electricity distribution licence;

b)You ask us to provide you with a new connection to our network or to alter an existing connection.

We will use the personal information you provide to us in order to process your connection request (including to process your payment), enter into a contract with you to provide the new or altered connection and to deliver the work required;

c)You ask to be included on our Priority Services Register.

Our Priority Services Register contains personal information about customers who are of pensionable age, are disabled or chronically sick, live with children aged under 5 or, due to being in a vulnerable situation, are in need of additional services related to their access, safety, and communication needs. 

We and our partner organisations, which include the emergency services, social services, charities and not for profit organisations, will use the information you have given us to provide you with the services set out in our guide to what you can expect from us when you become a priority services customer, including helping you in the event of a power cut.  Further details of our priority services can be found at www.northernpowergrid.com/care and the guide can be found at www.northernpowergrid.com/asset/0/document/2954.pdf;

d)You have to make a payment to us for a service we provide to you or we have to make a payment to you, for example if you want us to make a new connection to or alter the existing connection of your property to our electricity distribution network or where we are to make a payment to you under one of the Electricity Guaranteed Standards of Performance or on a goodwill basis; and

e)To ensure that we provide you and all of our customers with a high standard of service.

We use an independent research company to carry out customer satisfaction surveys on our behalf, as required by the terms of our electricity distribution licence. In order to do so, we may provide your details to Explain Market Research Limited, which is currently our appointed research company. If we do so, Explain Market Research Limited may contact you to complete a brief survey regarding your satisfaction with our service. Given the nature of the services we provide to you and the statutory and regulatory environment in which we are required to operate, we believe that the way in which we process your personal information for this purpose is in the interests of providing you with a high standard of customer service such that your interests or fundamental rights and freedoms as the data subject are not overridden by the ways in which we do so.

You are not obliged to provide us with your personal information. However, if you do not do so, we will be unable to provide you with the level of customer service we would like, such as keeping you up to date with our progress in fixing problems on our electricity distribution network that may affect the power supply to your property.

WITH WHOM WILL WE SHARE YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION?

We will only transfer your personal information to third parties on the basis set out in this privacy policy and may disclose your personal information to:

  • Other companies in the Northern Powergrid group;
  • Third parties whenever we are required to do so either by law, including to the Police, other law enforcement agencies and Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, or by the terms of our electricity distribution licence, including for customer satisfaction research and other regulatory purposes;
  • Companies or other organisations (including other companies in the Northern Powergrid group), with which we have a contract in order to provide our services to you in performance of a contract we have with you or with which we have a contract in order to operate our business, such as our IT Infrastructure Services provider; and
  • Organisations such as the emergency services, social services, charities and other not for profit organisations and your electricity supplier, gas transporter and water supply company so that you can be provided with priority services in the event of a power cut or a similar incident. We may, in certain circumstances, share personal information with some or all of those organisations via the UK Government’s ResilenceDirect system, including for purposes associated with the Civil Contingencies Act 2004.

FOR HOW LONG WILL WE RETAIN YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION?

Depending on the circumstances, we will retain personal information for as long as is necessary for the purposes set out in this privacy policy or as set out below, as appropriate:

  • The length of time your property is connected to our electricity distribution network and for at least seven years thereafter so that we are able to respond to any queries, complaints, claims or litigation;
  • Seven or twelve years following expiry of any contract we may have with you, depending on the nature of that contract;
  • Seven years so that we have the opportunity to deal with any issues that may arise with your power supply or your relationship with us, be it of a statutory, customer service nature or otherwise; or
  • For so long as we need to do so for legal, litigation or taxation reasons or for reasons related to compliance with our electricity distribution licence and/or the industry agreements that are associated with our role as a distribution network operator.

PROTECTING YOUR INFORMATION

We maintain stringent security measures designed to protect not only your personal information but other information in respect of the operation of our electricity distribution network. Our core information security principles are to protect personal data in terms of:

  • Confidentiality, by protecting personal data from breaches, unauthorised disclosures, loss or unauthorised viewing;
  • Integrity, by not allowing personal data to be modified without due cause; and
  • Availability, by protecting personal data from disruption.

To achieve this, the measures we implement include adhering to various security standards, including holding ISO27001 accreditation in respect of customer-related data, physical and technological protection, data encryption, having in place a suite of policy and procedural documentation in respect of the way in which we handle and keep personal data secure and asking you for proof of identity before we disclose your personal information to you.

Where we transfer your personal information to third parties in order to provide our services to you or to operate our business, we will put in place arrangements to protect that information.

TRANSFERRING PERSONAL INFORMATION INTERNATIONALLY

We may need to transfer personal information to our outsourced IT Infrastructure Services provider in India. In doing so, we have ensured and will continue to ensure that we have in place appropriate safeguards to protect that information, including at least one of the safeguards required by the General Data Protection Regulation.

Otherwise, we will not transfer your personal information to a third party outside of the European Economic Area unless you have confirmed to us that you are happy for us to do so.

CONTACTING US AND YOUR RIGHTS

If your property is connected to the electricity distribution network of Northern Powergrid (Northeast) Limited, the controller of your personal information is Northern Powergrid (Northeast) Limited. If your property is connected to the electricity distribution network of Northern Powergrid (Yorkshire) plc, the controller of your personal information is Northern Powergrid (Yorkshire) plc.

If you would like to contact us about how we process your personal information, you can do so by clicking on the “Make an enquiry” button at the bottom of this page or by writing to the Data Protection Officer, whose contact details are:

John Elliott
Head of Regulatory Compliance
Northern Powergrid
Lloyds Court
78 Grey Street
Newcastle upon Tyne
NE1 6AF

Subject to certain conditions, you have the right to:

  • Access your personal information;
  • Be informed about how we process your personal information;
  • Have your personal information rectified or erased;
  • Restrict our processing of your personal information;
  • Object to our processing of your personal information; and
  • The portability of your personal information, e.g. to receive that information in a “machine-readable format”.

If we are processing any of your personal data based on you having given us consent to do so, you have the right to withdraw that consent at any time. However, this will not affect the lawfulness of any processing we may have undertaken based on you consent before it is withdrawn.

You have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office about the way in which we process your personal information. You may do so by using the “Report a Concern” button on the Information Commissioner’s website at https://ico.org.uk/ or by writing to:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF

 

COOKIES

We use cookies to help improve your experience of using our website.  For more information on cookies and how we use them, please see our Cookies section at http://www.northernpowergrid.com/cookies.

Please note that, by deleting our cookies or disabling future cookies, you may not be able to access certain areas of our website.

We use Google Analytics and Google Advertising cookies for analytical purposes. For example, we obtain demographic information such as age, gender and your interests in order to improve our website. This allows us to gain an insight into the functionalities required by users of our website and to improve their experience of using it. We also use cookies from third-party partners, such as Google, for customer contact purposes.

CAN I OPT OUT OF GOOGLE ANALYTICS?

Yes, you can do so by downloading a Google Analytics Opt-out Add-on and applying it to your computer. You can download that Add-on from https://tools.google.com/dlpage/gaoptout/. It also works on mobile telephones.

You can also manage and opt-out from interest-based advertising on your browser and mobile telephone at http://optout.networkadvertising.org/#!/.

CALL MONITORING

We reserve the right to monitor all forms of communication we have with you, whether those communications are in electronic or other forms, for the purposes of developing and improving the services we provide to you, for staff training and quality assurance purposes, for compliance with our policies and procedures and for safety-related purposes. We may also use such monitoring to provide evidence of transactions which we have entered into with you.

We may record telephone calls with you for quality assurance purposes and we may collect personal information about you during those calls. We will deal with any personal information we do collect about you over the telephone in accordance with this privacy policy.

SPECIAL NOTE TO CHILDREN UNDER THE AGE OF 13

If you are under the age of 13, please do not send us your personal information, for example your name, address or e-mail address. If you wish to ask us a question or use our website in any way that requires you to send us your personal information, please ask your parent or guardian to do so on your behalf.