Electoral registration privacy notice

Who is the data controller?

The Electoral Registration Officer is the data controller for Electoral Registration in Liverpool City Council.

Why do we collect your data?

The Electoral Registration Officer is a data controller of this information and collects the personal data you provide for the purpose of registering your right to vote. You need to be registered to be able to vote in any election or referendum for which you are eligible.  We have a duty to maintain a complete and accurate register throughout the year. We will only collect the personal data we need from you, in order to do this.

What is the legal basis for collecting this data?

We do this as a legal obligation to comply with the Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013 and the Representation of the People Regulations 2001.  This ensures you are registered to vote in any election or referendum for which you are eligible.  The law makes it compulsory to provide information to an Electoral Registration Officer for inclusion in the full register. The GDPR provides within article 6 that were a local authority is obliged by legislation and/or is undertaking an official duty it can process personal data.

We keep records about potential and actual electors, voters, citizens, candidates and their agents and staff employed at an elections. These may be written down, or kept on a computer.

The information we collect

These records may include:

  • Your name, address, nationality and date of birth.
  • Unique identifiers such as National Insurance Number. Signatures for absent vote checking.
  • Scanned application forms, documentary evidence, dates of any letters of correspondence.
  • Notes about any relevant circumstances that you have told us.
  • Your previous or any redirected address.
  • The other occupants in your home.
  • If you are over 76 or under 16/17.
  • Whether you have chosen to opt out of the open version of the register.

Do I have to register to vote and what will happen if I don’t?

This information must be supplied to maintain the electoral register and for the purpose of administering an election. Failure to provide the information may result in a fine, upon conviction, of up to £1,000. 

Who will my information be shared with?

The information you provide is held in electoral registers which are managed by Electoral Registration Officers who, using information received, keep two registers – the full electoral register and the open (edited) register.

The full electoral register lists the names and addresses of everyone who is registered to vote in public elections.  The register is used for electoral purposes, such as making sure only eligible people can vote.  It is also used for other limited purposes specified in law, such as, detecting crime, calling people for jury service and checking credit applications.  The full register is published once a year and is updated every month and can only be supplied to the following people and organisations:

  • British Library.
  • UK Statistics Authority.
  • Electoral Commission.
  • Boundary Commission for England.
  • Jury Summoning Bureau.
  • Elected Representatives - MP, MEPS, Local Councillors.
  • Police and Crime Commissioner.
  • Candidates standing for elections.
  • Liverpool City Council.
  • Parish and Community councils.
  • Police Forces, National Crime Agency.
  • Public Library or local authority archive services.
  • Government departments or bodies.
  • Credit reference agencies.
  • National Fraud Initiative.
  • Electoral Registration and Returning Officers.

We also have to share your information with our software providers and contracted printers.

Access to the full electoral register

It is a crime for anyone who has a copy of the full register to pass information from this register on to others, if they do not have a lawful reason to see it.

Anyone can inspect the full electoral register. Inspection of the register will be under supervision. They can take extracts from the register, but only by hand written notes

Information taken must not be used for direct marketing purposes, in accordance with data protection legislation, unless it has been published in the open version

Anyone who fails to observe these conditions is committing a criminal offence and will be charged a penalty of up to £5,000.

Access to the open electoral register

The open register contains the same information as the full register, but is not used for elections or referendums. It is updated and published every month and can be sold to any person, company or organisation for a wide range of purposes.  For example, it is used by businesses and charities for checking names and address details, users of the register include direct marketing firms and also online directory firms.

You can choose whether or not to have your personal details included in the open version of the register, however, they will be included unless you ask for them to be removed. Removing your details from the open register will not affect your right to vote.

To verify your identity, the data you provide will be processed by the Individual Electoral Registration Digital Service managed by the Cabinet Office. As part of this process your data will be shared with the Department of Work and Pensions and Cabinet Office suppliers who process data for the Individual Electoral Registration Digital Service. Read their privacy notice for more information.

The information contained on the electoral register will also be used to produce and send poll cards, postal and proxy poll cards, postal votes, postal proxy votes, household enquiry forms, invitation to register applications, attestations, evidence requests and absent vote applications.

How long will you keep my data?

The Electoral Registration Officer and Returning Officer are obliged to process your personal data in relation to preparing for and conducting elections. Your details will be kept and updated in accordance with our legal obligations and in line with statutory retention periods. Please see What we do with your data for the council's full retention schedule.

How will my data be stored?

The information is stored on the Electoral Management System, supplied by Xpress Software Ltd.

Will my data be used to take automated decisions about me?  


Will my data be transferred abroad? 


What rights do I have when it comes to my data?

 You have a number of rights that are set out on the How to access your data page of this section.

Where can I get advice?

View our Help and advice page for more information.