Draft Customer Charter by runout


									                           Customer Charter 2010 - 2011

The Office of the Data Protection Commissioner is responsible for upholding the Data
Protection rights of individuals and enforcing the corresponding obligations on
organisations, as provided under the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003.

Further information is available on our website www.dataprotection.ie or by
contacting our Office by phone 057-8684800 or LoCall 1890 252 231.

This charter sets out the standard of service we aim to provide for you, our customer.
As a customer, you may be either a data subject (i.e. an individual) or a data controller
(an organisation that collects and controls personal data) or a data processor (an
organisation carrying out a task involving the use of personal data, on behalf of a data
controller) or a representative of one of these.

Copies of this charter are available at points of service (on our website and at the
reception desk in our office). We will measure and evaluate our performance against
these standards and those set out in our business plan and report on this each year in
our Annual Report. We aim for a relationship with our customers that is characterised
by courtesy, efficient and effective service delivery and the minimum of delay.

Contact by Telephone

We will answer calls as quickly as possible, and aim to answer 80% of telephone calls
within 20 seconds during our office hours (Monday to Friday, 09.15hrs – 5.30 pm
(5.15 pm on Friday).

When voicemail is in use, we will ensure that customers leaving messages receive a
call back within one working day at the very latest.

Callers to voicemail will be made aware if the person they are calling will be away for
more than one day, and will be provided with an alternative contact number.

We will give you our name once your call has been put through to the appropriate
person and we will be courteous and helpful to you at all times.

We will attempt to answer all queries in full at the time of your call. However, if the
query raises complex issues, you may be asked to submit a written query to ensure
that a comprehensive answer is supplied.

Correspondence raising queries by Letter, Fax or Email

We will acknowledge correspondence (queries) within 3 working days.

We will keep you informed of progress if a final reply is not issued within 15
working days.

We will communicate clearly, providing you with a full response to your queries in so
far as is possible.

Timelines in respect of Registration applications and Investigations and
Complaints under the Data Protection Acts

We have duties and obligations to both data subjects and data controllers, as

Registration applications

The purpose that underlies the registration system is to contribute to transparency in
processing of personal data. All applications for registration will be accepted or
queried, ordinarily, within one week. An updated register will be published on the
web every fortnight and sectoral registration guidelines will be available. An on-line
payments system is in place for the convenience of our customers.

Investigations and Complaints

We will acknowledge all new complaints within 3 days, keep you advised of progress
on your case, and inform you as promptly and clearly as possible of the outcome of
the examination. All complaints will be investigated impartially and independently in
accordance with the principles of natural justice. The data controller, as well as the
complainant, will be kept up to date as to the status of the complaint.

Our approach to complaints, as provided under the Acts, is to try to reach an amicable
resolution to the matter which is the subject of the complaint within a reasonable
time-frame. In response to large increases in the volume of complaints, we have put
in place a reviewing function at senior level which assesses each complaint and query
received for investigation under the Acts on the basis of the evidence initially
available. This allows some cases to be resolved informally to the satisfaction of both
parties. In relation to formal complaints (assuming there is co-operation between the
parties involved in the complaint and that the complaint raises no unusual difficult
issues) we will endeavour to conclude our investigations within 10 - 12 weeks and
advise you of our initial conclusions as soon as possible. If this schedule is unlikely
to be met due to the protracted nature of the investigations or because there are
particular difficulties for us in getting the information necessary to proceed with the
case in accordance with our obligations under the Data Protection Acts, we will
inform you of the change to the above schedule.

If the Data Protection Commissioner makes a formal decision on a complaint, the
complainant will be informed, in writing, of his/her right of appeal to the Circuit

Visitors to our Office

We provide reception and meeting room facilities at our public office and will ensure
that these facilities are clean, accessible and maintained to a high standard of comfort
and safety.

We will provide you with the maximum level of privacy possible.

We will meet you at an agreed time, if you have an appointment, and will be friendly,
helpful and courteous in our dealings with you.

Service through Irish
We will ensure that people who wish to conduct their business through Irish are
facilitated, and we will respond in Irish to correspondence received in Irish.

We will respond in Irish, to telephone callers who wish to speak in Irish, immediately
where possible, or offer to have the call returned promptly by a member of staff who
can deal with the query in Irish.

We will publish major documents such as our Annual Report simultaneously in both
Irish and English, the Irish language version of our website (www.cosantasonrai.ie)
will be maintained to ensure that it is an up-to-date, accurate and useful resource, we
will develop the capacities of our staff to provide services through Irish and we will
otherwise comply with the commitments set out in our Irish Language Scheme.

Provision of Information

We will provide comprehensive, definitive and clear information regarding data
protection matters, using language and media which is suitable for our customers’
needs (subject to resource constraints).

We will ensure that our more important public information material is available in
both electronic and print format.

Coordination of public service delivery

We will ensure a high level of co-ordination with relevant bodies such as the Human
Rights Commission, the Commission for Communications Regulation (ComReg), the
Information Commissioner, the Regulator of Premium Rate Services (Regtel) and the
National Consumer Agency as a central element of service delivery. Our
international mutual assistance obligations mean that Data Protection Authorities in
other jurisdictions, as well as the EU Commission for instance, are also our customers
and we will continue to meet our responsibilities in this area through effective liaison
with these bodies.

Equality / Diversity/Disability

We are committed to providing a service to customers that upholds their rights to
equal treatment established by equality and disability legislation.

We will aim to ensure that our services and facilities are accessible to all our
customers, including those with special needs.

Quality of Service

We are committed to providing the best possible service for our customers. We
welcome your help in providing this service by making any comments, suggestions or
complaints about the service you receive, or the way in which it is delivered.

A complaint should be made in the first instance to the supervisor at the point of
service, and we will do our best to resolve these complaints to your satisfaction.

If you are not satisfied with the response you receive from the point of service and
wish to make a formal written complaint, you should write to the Data Protection
Commissioner who will examine your complaint. The Commissioner will endeavour
to respond as soon as possible and at the very latest within 15 working days. Where
it is not possible to issue a comprehensive reply immediately, an acknowledgment
will issue in relation to your complaint within 3 working days.

Consultation and Feedback

We welcome your comments and suggestions on this Charter and on how we can
improve our service in the future. You can email these comments to us at
info@dataprotection.ie, or complete the online customer feedback forms on our
website at www.dataprotection.ie, or phone ,write to or visit us about this (see contact
details below).

Where to get more information

This Charter is available in both Irish and English. It is available in electronic format
on our website www.dataprotection.ie, or in printed form.

Help Us to Help You

You can help us to give you a high quality service if you:

      Make an appointment when you wish to meet a member of staff.
      Quote any relevant reference number in all communications with us.
      Treat our staff courteously, as you would wish to be treated yourself.
      If you have internet access, check our website www.dataprotection.ie for
      Make comments or suggestions about the service you receive.

Customer Service Complaints

We wish to maintain an accessible, transparent and easy-to-use system of dealing with
complaints about the quality of service provided by the Office of the Data Protection
Commissioner. We welcome customers’ views, received both formally and
informally, and their advice on how we can improve our services. Customers are
welcome to make their views known in person or by telephone. We will try to address
customer concerns at the point of service if at all possible. If you wish to make a
formal written complaint, please address it directly to the Commissioner at:

Data Protection Commissioner
Canal House
Station Road
Co. Laois

We will acknowledge your written complaint within 3 working days. We will
respond, or give an interim response, to formal complaints within 15 working days.

 How to contact us:

Address:                Office of the Data Protection Commissioner
                        Canal House
                        Station Road
                        Co Laois

office hours:           Monday to Friday, 9.15 am – 5.30 (5.15 Friday)

Telephone:            From Ireland: (057) 868 4800 or LoCall 1890 252 231
                      From abroad: + 353 57 868 4800
Fax:                  From Ireland: (057) 868 4757
                      From abroad: + 353 57 868 4757
E-mail:               info@dataprotection.ie


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