Data Protection & Data Protection Service

Data protection service AND DATA DESTRUCTION

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What is Data Protection? 

“Data protection is the safeguarding of the privacy rights of individuals in relation to the processing of personal data. The Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003 confer rights on individuals as well as responsibilities on those persons processing personal data.”

 

How can I protect my identity?

  •  Keep your documents such as your driving licence, passport, birth or marriage certificate in a safe, preferably in a lockable cabinet or safe.
  • Regularly request a copy of your personal credit file from your financial institute to see if it includes any credit applications you do not recognise.
  • Change of address. You can register with An Post for Irish resident customers (or equivalent if you live outside of Ireland) redirection service to help prevent identity fraud when you move.
  • Be careful in shared buildings, if others have access to your post. Contact An Post if you think your post is being stolen, or redirected elsewhere without your approval.
  •  Avoid throwing documents away which include your name, address or other personal information. Bills, receipts, statements or even unwanted post in your name can be misused in the wrong hands. Where possible, documents should be securely shredded beyond reconstruction, to minimise the risk of criminals obtaining information.
  • Report the loss of any important documentation immediately – for example your passport or driving licence. Inform the organisation that issued it, and if stolen contact the Gardaí.
  • Check your bills and statements as soon as they arrive. If any unfamiliar transactions are listed, contact the company concerned immediately.

How can I spot identity theft?

  • Your bills and statements do not arrive as expected, or you stop receiving any post at all.
  • An important document has been lost or stolen, for example your passport or driving licence.
  • Transactions you do not recognise start appearing on your statements
  • Bills, invoices or receipts addressed to you start arriving, for goods or services you have not requested.
  • You receive statements in your name, relating to accounts that you have not opened.
  • A loan or credit application is unexpectedly rejected despite having a good credit history; or you apply for welfare benefits and are told you are already claiming when you are not.
  • You are contacted by solicitors or debt collectors for debts that are not yours.

What should I do if I think I am a victim of identity theft? 

  • Act quickly. This will help in ensuring you are not liable for any financial losses caused by criminals using your identity.
  • Identify which documents or personal information may be in the wrong hands.
  • Check that you are in receipt of all expected post. Contact An Post if you have any suspicions.
  • If you believe documents containing details of your identity have been stolen, contact your local Gardaí station to report the theft.
  • Contact the organisation who originally issued the missing document to alert them to the situation.
  • Contact other companies that you have financial packages with, to alert them to the situation.

Useful contact details:

The Office of the Data Protection Commissioner

Canal House,Station Road,Portarlington,Co. Laois

Email: info@dataprotection.ie

 

An Post

O’Connell Street,Dublin 1,Customer Service Team

Tel: 1850575859.

 

Department of Foreign Affairs

80 St Stephen’s Green,Dublin 2

Tel: (01) 4780822 LoCall: 1890 426 700

 

Central Bank of Ireland

PO Box 559, Dame Street,Dublin 2

Tel: +353 1 224 6000

 

Security in Shredding

Ballyartella, Ballycommon, Nenagh,Co. Tipperary

Tel: 067 24848

For more information on paper shredding services and document destruction please visit out site at: http://www.securityinshredding.com/

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Minister says Data Protection Commissioner is independent

Data Protection CommissionerRTE News 28th January 2016

The Minister for European Affairs and Data Protection has defended the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner, saying it is completely independent of government.

Minister Dara Murphy was responding to the news that Digital Rights Ireland is to take legal action against the Government, challenging whether the office is truly an independent data authority under EU law.

DRI says a series of judgments from the EU’s top court have stressed the critical importance of a truly independent data protection authority.

However, DRI says it will claim in court that Ireland has failed to properly implement EU data protection law or follow the requirements of the Charter of Fundamental Rights by failing to ensure the Irish ODPC is genuinely independent from government.

Speaking to RTÉ News, Mr Murphy said he was aware of the impending case, but said it would be up to the courts to decide.

He added that the ODPC and its functions are completely independent of government.

He acknowledged that the ODPC is government funded, but said apart from that it is like many other agencies in the state that are independent of government.

Mr Murphy also defended the public sector’s attitude to data protection, following criticism earlier today from Data Protection Commissioner, Helen Dixon.

The minister said improvements in compliance with data protection rules are needed across society including Government departments and the public sector generally.

But he said the new European General Data Protection Regulation will change and strengthen data protection rules.

He added he had recently brought local authorities and semi-state companies together to impress upon them the strong obligations they have in this area.

He said public bodies are engaging, although that doesn’t mean there is not more work to be done in the area.

On the controversy around the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission’s accessing of journalists phone records, Mr Murphy said the Minister for Justice was right to commission an investigation into it, as it is absolutely essential that citizens have confidence in any state agency that processes or handles their data.

Commissioner critical of compliance levels

Earlier, Ms Dixon criticised the level of compliance with data protection laws in the public sector.

Ms Dixon released a statement setting out priorities for data protection rights and protocol in 2016 to mark the tenth annual Data Protection Day.

In particular, she has called for improvements to the legislative process to ensure greater deliberation and scrutiny of issues that interfere with the fundamental right to data protection.

The commissioner acknowledged data protection is not an absolute right and in certain circumstances, must yield to other competing rights.

However, she also stated that if a public body is going to interfere with data protection rights, it must generally be provided for by law, be proportionate, necessary and made in the general interest or need to protect others rights.

Ms Dixon concludes that consideration must be given to all of these matters when drafting legislation.

 

Her pointed comments come as her office prepares to begin an audit of contentious powers used by several public bodies, including An Garda Síochána and GSOC, to access telephone records and other electronic messages.

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New Data Protection Commissioner

new data protection commissioner
We welcome Ms. Helen Dixon in to the Data Protection Sector and wish her success in her important new role. Ms. Dixon is taking over from Mr. Billy Hawkes whom has retired from his position as privacy chief since 2005.
Ms. Dixon has served an 11 year career in two US IT multinationals – Worth Data Inc and Citrix Systems – that had their EMEA bases in Ireland.
“The role of the office of the Data Protection Commissioner as an independent body which has responsibility for safeguarding data in Ireland is of critical importance.”
In a statement, a Government spokesman said Ms Dixon brings “a wealth of experience and expertise to her new role, both in the public and private sectors”.
We would like to wish Ms. Helen Dixon all the best in her new role and hope she has a successful career.
We would also like to wish Mr. Billy Hawkes well with his future endeavours.

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