Taxi and private hire privacy notice

Gateshead Council has a statutory duty to regulate hackney carriage and private hire activities in the borough. The Council needs to collect your personal information to carry out this function.

Under the provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998, the first data protection principle requires, among other things, that we must be able to satisfy one or more conditions for processing in relation to our processing of personal data. The Council relies on the following lawful condition for processing your personal information:

Processing is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in the controller.

Most of the personal information that we hold is provided by you in your licence application and the supporting documents you provided with it.

The law requires us to verify that applicants for driver licences as well as individuals applying for a private hire operators licence have the right to work in the UK. Where necessary, we may need to verify your information with the Home Office and/or the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

We may also verify other information about you or your vehicle during the period that your licence is valid. This is to ensure your continuing fitness to hold your licence.

The police may inform us if you are arrested or charged with a criminal offence. This is known as Common Law Police Disclosure. We may use this information to decide whether it is appropriate to suspend or revoke your licence.

Keeping your information secure

We take the privacy of our licensees very seriously. We have a range of robust policies, processes and technical measures in place to control and safeguard access to, and use of, personal information associated with taxi and private hire licensing.

We retain personal information related to taxi and private hire vehicles, taxi and private hire drivers and private hire operators in accordance with a defined disposal schedule. The period for which information is retained is six years from the expiry of a licence or six years from the resolution of an unsuccessful application or the resolution of legal proceedings.

We will not pass your personal information on to any other organisation for marketing purposes without your prior consent. We do not sell or rent personal data to third parties for any purpose. 

Sharing personal information

The Council has contracts with a number of third party service providers that support the day-to-day operation of our licensing services. 

The Council also shares personal information with a number of other organisations as part of the licensing process. Such organisations may include the police, DVLA, Home Office, DWP, MIB, and local authorities. Any information sharing is managed in accordance with relevant privacy and data protection legislation. 

The Council is required by law to disclose information about licensed drivers to the Cabinet Office as part of the National Fraud Initiative.

Some limited licensee information may be made available to the public where relevant legislation requires or permits it and publication is in the public interest. Examples include licensee names and associated badge or licence numbers, together with the status and expiry dates of those licences. The Council will never publish the home addresses of any taxi or private hire licensee online, or in a publicly available register.

In some circumstances, disclosures of personal data to the police (and other law enforcement agencies) are permitted by data protection legislation if they relate to the prevention or detection of crime and/or the apprehension or prosecution of offenders. Before any such disclosure takes place, the police are required to demonstrate that the personal data concerned is necessary for them to carry out a proper investigation. Each police request received by us is dealt with on a strictly case-by-case basis to ensure that any such disclosure is lawful and carried out in accordance with relevant guidance issued by the Information Commissioner's Office.

Your information rights

If you would like to receive copies of the personal data the Council holds about you in connection with taxi and private hire licensing, please email your request to the Licensing Team at:

Licensing
Gateshead Council
Civic Centre
Regent Street
Gateshead
NE8 1HH
0191 433 4741
licensing@gateshead.gov.uk

If you have specific concerns about the way we handle your personal data, you can contact the Council.

You are also entitled to make a complaint to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO), the independent regulator responsible for upholding information rights. You can find more information on the ICO website.

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