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Privacy policy

Who we are

SocietyWorks is the commercial arm of the charity mySociety.

mySociety has been running well-used and popular civic services since 2003 – and our users’ privacy is paramount. As such, we have put a lot of thought into managing your data in ways that will not compromise your privacy. Below, you can read about the decisions we’ve made.

If you need to contact us, you can do so by emailing us: enquiries@societyworks.org

If you prefer to chat on the phone, our phone number is: 020 3287 9859

Our address is:

mySociety

483 Green Lanes

London

N13 4BS

United Kingdom

What personal information we collect

We adhere to strict internal privacy policies which comply with the GDPR.

Your details will be shared with our small team of support staff and may be forwarded to the person or people in the organisation best equipped to respond. 

Subscribers receive one general SocietyWorks newsletter monthly. Occasionally, we send an extra mailout to impart news or announce events.

In March 2020 we made a decision to no longer use tracking in our newsletters, which means that we can’t identify how many or which users have opened mailouts or followed links.

Subscribers receive one newsletter monthly. Occasionally, we may send an extra mailout to impart news or announce events.

How we store your personal information

When you unsubscribe from a newsletter managed via Mailchimp, your details remain on the list of past recipients. This is a measure to prevent circumstances such as a member of staff accidentally manually re-adding you. Mailchimp states: “As a compliance measure, subscribers who unsubscribe themselves can’t be deleted from your list.”

However, provided you are still a subscriber at the point when you contact us, on request your details can be permanently removed from the list – please get in touch if you would like this to happen.

How we get the personal information and why we have it

Most of the personal information we process is provided to us directly by you for one of the following reasons:

We also receive personal information directly from the following sources in the following scenarios:

We will always provide you with the explicit option to unsubscribe from our emails, or to permanently opt-out of hearing from us again.

SocietyWorks also carries out some direct marketing activities including:

In these scenarios, we never have access to email addresses or any other personal information – that remains with the third party website or social media platform.

Legal basis for processing

In subscribing to the newsletter or contacting us, you are consenting to the processes as described on this page. The legal basis is GDPR  6(1)(a) – Consent of the data subject.

For our commercial direct marketing activities, we use this data under the lawful basis of legitimate interests.

Retention period

Under GDPR we will not retain your data for longer than it is useful for the task it was initially collected for.

In all cases listed above, we retain your personal data until such a time as you unsubscribe or ask us to remove your details. For one-off mailouts and for lists of contacts to cold call, we will maintain a system of deleting data whenever a list has been replaced or retired.

If you contact SocietyWorks via our contact form, we reserve the right to keep your message indefinitely. This is to aid continuity and so that we can view any historic context which may have bearing on subsequent support mail, even if members of the support staff change. Support staff adhere to strict internal privacy and security policies.

We are obliged to keep records relating to financial transactions for at least six years following the end of the accounting period in which the transaction took place. We destroy our records after this point; if you require information on payment processors’ policies, please contact them directly.

Your right to access

You may contact us at any time to ask to see what personal data we hold about you. Please contact us to request this.

Your right to erasure

You may request that we destroy the personal data that we hold about you, provided that there is no legitimate reason for us continuing to hold it, that is to say if it does not relate to financial transactions or is unlikely to be of any legal or practical purpose in the future. Please contact us to request this.

Your right to complain

If you believe that we have mishandled your data, you have the right to lodge a complaint with the Information Commissioner’s Office. You can report a concern here (but do contact us first, so that we can try and help).

Security

Cyber Essentials certifiedmySociety is Cyber Essentials certified, as a verification that we guard against the most common cyber threats and to demonstrate our commitment to cyber security.

 

Data, cookies, and external services

We do not use cookies. We use Plausible, a cookie-free and fully GDPR compliant analytics service, to understand how our website is used and make it better.

Tools like Plausible are very common and widely used by other sites, but they do have privacy implications, and as a charity concerned with socially positive uses of the internet, we think it’s important to explain them in full.

When you visit sites that use these tools, you’re potentially telling companies such as Facebook and Google that you visited, as well as some information about how your web browser is configured. Nothing more than that – we don’t give out personal information like your email address, home address or private mail.

If you don’t want to share your browsing activities on mySociety’s sites with other companies, you can install opt-out browser plugins. Here are links to more explanations:

Last updated: 26 July 2021