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Privacy Policy

Section A


Data held by Christina Deias Counselling will be held lawfully and for the retention periods set out in section B of this policy document.

This document refers to:

  • Written documents
  • Spreadsheets
  • Hardcopy case notes and files
  • Database entries
  • Electronic files
  • Images
  • Emails
  • Text messages
  • Supervision notes
  • Visits to the organisation’s website
  • Social media communication

Aim and Purpose

The purpose of this document is to ensure that Christina Deias Counselling has a framework that ensures the rights and freedom of individuals in relation to their personal data (Article 1) and adheres to best practice in the management of client information and business records.

Information Governance sets out the way in which information collated by an organisation is managed and ensures that any information collected:

  • is the right information
  • is in the right place
  • at the right time
  • with the right people
  • for the right reasons

This is a live document and may be updated at any time to reflect changes in law or growth of the business, and therefore should be revisited regularly to check for any updates.

Christina Deias Counselling is fully committed to ensuring clients’ privacy and data protection rights.

For the purpose of this policy Christina Deias is the named Data Protection Officer/Controller and Head of Organisation.

Information Governance Framework Principles for Christina Deias Counselling

1. Assessment needs for Information Governance (IG) Training have been identified and fully met, with a 75 minute General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) CPD Course provided by the Clinical Hypnotherapy School (www.clinicalhypnotherapyschool.com) completed. Refresher training is completed every two years.

2. Any changes to the business processes and/or operations will be planned and will comply with the framework to ensure any risks to personal and sensitive information are minimised.

3. Any data collected is solely for the purpose of providing a counselling service to an individual client.

4. The Caldicott Principles are used to provide guidance in best practice when handling personal data, alongside the ICO’s Office Codes of Practice. (https://www.igt.hscic.gov.uk/Caldicott2Principles.aspx)

5. All technology used to store or facilitate information and communication is maintained according to the Data Retention Policy for Christina Deias Counselling.
6. All records are identifiable, locatable, retrievable, and intelligible according to regulations set out by GDPR.

7. It is the responsibility of the Data Controller to ensure sufficient resources are in place to prioritise adhering to Data Protection Legislation in the business.

9. Any electronic devices where personal or sensitive, confidential information is held will be password protected.

10. Procedures have been put in place to ensure the GDPR are met. These can be found in Section C.

Section B

Privacy Notice: Use of information

In accordance with this data retention schedule there may be occasions when data is not destroyed due to ongoing investigation, ligation or enquiry. The data will be deleted upon confirmation that it is no longer required.

On some occasions anonymised personal data will be retained whereby a client has provided a testimonial for use on the organisation’s website. When data is non-identifiable GDPR law is no longer applicable. [Non-identifiable means that if this data was left on a bus, for example, no one, including the data subject would be able to identify that this data was relating to them.]

  • Personal information collated and stored in hardcopy will be placed in a locked filing cabinet.
  • Personal information collated and stored electronically will be stored on a password protected, encrypted hard drive, which will be locked in a filing cabinet.
  • Any document containing personal data will state “private and confidential” clearly.
  • All emails will contain a privacy statement and sent via an encrypted email service.

Under the General Data Protection and Retention (2018) legislation, regarding how your personal data is processed, all individuals have;

  • the right to be informed;
  • the right of access;
  • the right to rectification;
  • the right to erasure;
  • the right to restrict processing;
  • the right to data portability;
  • the right to object; and
  • the right not to be subject to automated decision-making including profiling.

Please note that Christina Deias Counselling does not use automated decision-making tools, including profiling.

If any information held is noted to be incorrect an individual can request a correction be made to their own personal information. If you wish for your data to be provided to another service provider, you may also request this in writing.

Website visitors

When an individual visits www.christinadeiascounselling.co.uk, I use Google analytics who are considered a third party service, to collect information about what visitors do when they click on my website, e.g. which page they visit the most. Google analytics only collect non-identifiable data which means I or they cannot identify who is visiting. Christina Deias Counselling will always be transparent when it comes to collecting personal data and will be clear about how that data is processed. Google analytics privacy notice can be found here: https://policies.google.com/privacy/update?hl=en


WordPress is a third-party service that hosts Christina Deias Counselling’s website. Like most website operators, WordPress.org collects non-personally-identifying information of the sort that web browsers and servers typically make available, such as the browser type, language preference, referring site, and the date and time of each visitor request. WordPress’ privacy notice can be found here for further information: https://en-gb.wordpress.org/about/privacy/

Social Media

Christina Deias Counselling as an organisation does not use social media. Attempts by clients to contact Christina Deias via social media in a personal or professional capacity will be deleted/ignored to ensure confidentiality. Further information on social media use can be found from Christina Deias Counselling’s Social Media Policy.

Website Cookies

WordPress is a third-party service that hosts Christina Deias Counselling’s website. To check the cookies set by WordPress, deactivate all the plugins on the website. This is because other plugins may also install cookies on a WordPress website. Or you can check with a fresh installation of WordPress.

Without plugins installed, WordPress sets the following cookies:

  • wordpress_[hash]
  • wordpress_logged_in_[hash]
  • wordpress_test_cookie
  • wp-settings-{time}-[UID]

These are the cookies that activate in the admin area of the website.

For more information on website cookies, please see Christina Deias Counselling’s Cookie Policy available here: https://www.christinadeiascounselling.co.uk/cookie-policy/

Accountancy Services

Christina Deias Counselling uses a fully qualified external accountant as a third-party service to manage business finances. A confidentiality agreement is in place between Christina Deias Counselling and the accountant to ensure sensitive data relating to financial information is kept secure at all times. Such sensitive data may include a client’s name as associated with a bank transfer payment.

Retention Schedule

Information Asset Information Owner Asset Retention Trigger for Disposal
Email (including sent items) Head of organisation Annual review period every January, any remaining live data untouched until following review period End of retention period
Contact details held on mobile devices Head of organisation All entries to be deleted prior to decommissioning of mobile device or reissue of device End of retention period
Promotional materials Head of organisation Until superseded – Consent to be rechecked prior to reissue End of retention period
Paper diaries Head of organisation 3 months from the period in which its use ends. End of retention period
Policies Head of organisation Until new policy has been put into place End of retention period
Client records including session notes, initial consultation notes and client overview form Head of organisation I meet the minimum statute of limitation in my country. Whilst this can vary depending on the specific circumstances of the case, this is generally 7 years after our final session has ended for adults in the UK. When working with children, the statute of limitation is 6 years after the child reaches the age of 18 in the UK. End of retention period
Safeguarding records Head of organisation I meet the minimum statute of limitation in my country. Whilst this can vary depending on the specific circumstances of the case, this is generally 7 years after our final session has ended for adults in the UK. When working with children, the statute of limitation is 6 years after the child reaches the age of 18 in the UK. End of retention period
Waiting lists Head of organisation Annual review period every January, old waiting list destroyed and new waiting list developed with any remaining live data transferred to new live document. End of retention period
Continual Professional Development Records Head of organisation To be retained when worker is in service and until 8 years afterwards. End of retention period
Worker supervision records Head of organisation To be retained when worker is in service and until 8 years afterwards. End of retention period
Service evaluation records Head of organisation Transfer to anonymised data within 6 months of collection End of retention period
Tax returns Head of organisation 6 years from the end of the financial period to which they pertain to. End of retention period
Incident/Accident reports Head of organisation 40 years from date report was closed End of retention period
Insurance policies Head of organisation 40 years from date policy ended. End of retention period
Complaints Head of organisation 2 years from complaint being resolved End of retention period
Right to Erasure Request Head of organisation 8 years from request being submitted and completed. End of retention period
Subject Access Request Head of organisation 8 years alongside session notes, or plus 2 years from case closure if request is made after 6 years of storing data. End of retention period

Data Processing

What are the lawful basis for processing data at Christina Deias Counselling?

  • In relation to communicating with my clients: The individual has given clear consent for their data to be processed for the specific purpose/s detailed in the consent form stored in their personal file.
  • Processing is necessary in order to protect the vital interests of the data subject or of another natural person.
  • Processing is necessary for your legitimate interests as specified in Article 9 of the GDPR;


  1. Processing of personal data revealing racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, or trade union membership, and the processing of genetic data, biometric data for the purpose of uniquely identifying a natural person, data concerning health or data concerning a natural person’s sex life or sexual orientation shall be prohibited.
  2. Paragraph 1 shall not apply if one of the following applies:

(h)  processing is necessary for the purposes of preventive or occupational medicine, for the assessment of the working capacity of the employee, medical diagnosis, the provision of health or social care or treatment or the management of health or social care systems and services on the basis of Union or Member State law or pursuant to contract with a health professional and subject to the conditions and safeguards referred to in paragraph 3;

  1. Personal data referred to in paragraph 1 may be processed for the purposes referred to in point (h) of paragraph 2 when those data are processed by or under the responsibility of a professional subject to the obligation of professional secrecy under Union or Member State law or rules established by national competent bodies or by another person also subject to an obligation of secrecy under Union or Member State law or rules established by national competent bodies.

This means that Christina Deias Counselling does not require consent to hold your data to provide a service but does require your consent to contact you for specific purposes. Participating in the service by attending more than one appointment implies that you agree with the Terms and Conditions provided to you at the commencement of service delivery.

Description of processing

The following is a broad description of the way this organisation/data controller processes personal information.

Reasons/purposes for processing information

Christina Deias Counselling processes personal information to enable the provision of counselling services, to advertise services and to maintain accounts and records.

Type/classes of information processed

Christina Deias Counselling processes information relevant to the above reasons/purposes. This information may include:

  • personal details
  • family, lifestyle and social circumstances
  • goods and services
  • financial details
  • employment and education details

Christina Deias Counselling also processes sensitive classes of information that may include:

  • physical or mental health details
  • racial or ethnic origin
  • religious or other beliefs of a similar nature
  • offences and alleged offences

Christina Deias Counselling processes personal information about:

  • clients
  • suppliers
  • business contacts
  • professional advisers
  • supervisors

Section C

Data Breach

All personal and sensitive data held by Christina Deias Counselling is held securely. Electronic data stored on a computer is stored on a password protected computer and through use of a password protected and encrypted hard drive. This supports the ability to retrieve data in the event of faults. Hardcopy data is held securely in a locked cabinet. A password protected external hard drove external hard drive is kept in a locked cabinet when not in use.

In the case of a data breach Christina Deias Counselling shall comply with the regulations set out under Article 33 of the GDPR stated below;

  1. In the case of a personal data breach, the data controller shall without undue delay and, where feasible, not later than 72 hours after having become aware of it, notify the personal data breach to the ICO, unless the personal data breach is unlikely to result in a risk to the rights and freedoms of the individual. Where the notification to the ICO is not made within 72 hours, it shall be accompanied by reasons for the delay.
  2. The notification referred to in paragraph 1 shall at least:

(a)  describe the nature of the personal data breach including where possible, the approximate number of data subjects concerned and the categories (e.g. sessions notes, phone numbers) and approximate number of personal data records concerned;

(b)  communicate the name and contact details of the data controller where more information can be obtained;

(c)  describe the likely consequences of the personal data breach;

(d)  describe the measures taken or proposed to be taken by the controller to address the personal data breach, including, where appropriate, measures to mitigate its possible adverse effects.

  1. Where, and in so far as, it is not possible to provide the information at the same time, the information may be provided in phases without undue further delay.
  2. The controller shall document any personal data breaches, comprising the facts relating to the personal data breach, its effects and the remedial action taken. That documentation shall enable the supervisory authority to verify compliance with this Article.
  3. In the event that a data breach will likely cause a risk to the rights and freedoms of client data, the data controller must communicate the nature of the breach in clear, concise and plain language, to the client/s involved, without delay.
  4. If a breach occurs but the data controller has gone to appropriate lengths to protect the data held on the client (e.g. password encryption of electronic files), or if the data controller has taken subsequent action to prevent the risk (e.g. immediately blocking a mobile device) then notifying the client will not be required.


Subject Access Request

A Subject Access Requests (SAR) permits individuals to request a copy of their personal information.

A SAR must be acted upon within one month, at the most within two months, any longer and reasonable reason must be provided. There are no fees unless there is a disproportionate fee to the organisation for sending out the information. Application for SAR should be held alongside session records, unless application was made after eight years of the end of treatment. In which case the SAR will be held for a further two years after closure of SAR.

A SAR request will include information we hold about you, Christina Deias Counselling will:

  • give you a description of it;
  • tell you why we are holding it;
  • tell you who it could be disclosed to; and
  • let you have a copy of the information in an intelligible form.


SAR requests should be put in writing to Christina Deias Counselling. A response may be provided informally over the telephone with your agreement, or formally by letter or email. If any information held is noted to be incorrect an individual can request a correction be made to their own personal information. If you wish for your data to be provided to another service provider, you may also request this in writing. I may have a legal basis to continue to hold your data and will notify you of this if that is the case. Any requests should be made in writing to Christina Deias Counselling.

Right to Erasure

Any person may put in a request for their personal data to be removed (the ‘right to be forgotten’ or the ‘right to erasure’). In this instance hard copy data will be shredded using a cross shredding machine owned by the organisation and any electronic data will be permanently deleted. The client will be notified of the completion. The request for deletion of data and the confirmation of completion will be held securely until eight years after the request was made. In some instances, my supervisory body or insurance company may require me to lawfully hold your files until the end of their retention period. If this arises, I will notify you at my earliest opportunity.


Christina Deias Counselling hopes to the meet the highest quality standards when processing personal and sensitive data. Complaints can help identify areas for improvement and therefore Christina Deias Counselling would welcome you raising any concerns you have.

These Information Governance Policy documents were created to be as transparent and understandable as possible. It will not be completely exhaustive of all aspects of data collection. If you would like further information about a specific process, please contact Christina Deias Counselling.

If you feel you would like to make a complaint about how your personal and sensitive data is handled by Christina Deias Counselling, you can contact Christina Deias Counselling directly. In the event that Christina Deias Counselling cannot resolve your complaint to your satisfaction you can contact the Information Commissioners Office on 0303 123 1113.

Safeguarding your privacy

In the event of my death or sudden illness, my partner will contact existing clients and archive any client files in accordance with General Data Protection Regulations.

This may mean shredding any hardcopy documents, and having any electronic documents saved on a hard drive professionally wiped or destroyed by a GDPR complaint technician.

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