Privacy policy

 This statement was last updated on 21st October 2013. 

Access to and use of this site ( is provided by the National Statistician’s Office (‘Us’/’We’)

This page explains how we collect and use information, and how we protect your privacy.

General information

This policy only applies to

For the purposes of the Data Protection Act 1998 the Data Controller for this website is the National Statistician’s Office operating through the Government Statistical Service website. The website is maintained on behalf of National Statistician’s Office by the digital agency dxw and hosted by Amazon Web Services under contract of the National Statistician’s Office

If you follow a link to an external website, please read the privacy policy for that site. We are not responsible for the content or reliability of the websites we link to and do not necessarily endorse the views expressed within them.

 Changes to the privacy policy

if this privacy policy changes in any way, we will post the new information on this page. Please review this privacy policy regularly to ensure you are aware of any changes made by us, what information we collect, how we use it and under what circumstances, if any, we will share it with other parties.

Data Protection Act 1998

Under the Data Protection Act 1998 , we have a legal duty to protect any information we collect from you. You have a right to access your personal data and change any inaccuracies.

We will ensure that any information we obtain and use will always be held, used and transferred in compliance with Data Protection Act 1998.

A very limited number of staff at the National Statistician’s Office and our external web development agency (dxw) have access to data.

 What we mean by personal information

“Personal data” means data which relate to a living individual who can be identified:

(a) from those data, or

(b) from those data and other information which is in the possession of, or is likely to come into the possession of, the data controller, and includes any expression of opinion about the individual and any indication of the intentions of the data controller or any other person in respect of the individual.

All personal information that we obtain from you in relation to the GSS website will be dealt with in accordance with the provisions of this Privacy Policy and the Data Protection Act 1998.

 Personal information we collect

When you register on the GSS website as a user, we ask you for certain information in order to build up your user profile.

We collect and process the following data:

  • Information you provide via the “registration” page when registering to use the GSS website including your name, email address, department, grade, discipline, job title;
  • Any updated information you provide from time to time via the “My Profile” page;
  • Information you provide when you submit or post content to the GSS website or when you contact us (including when you report a problem with the GSS site to us).
  • Details of your visits to the GSS website including, but not limited to, visit frequency and details of your usage, what groups you belong to, where you contribute content, who you ‘friend’, etc. and the resources that you access.
  •  The information generated by ‘cookies’ (see ‘Cookies’ section below) about your use of the website (including your IP address). The GSS website uses Google Analytics to help analyse how users use the webssite. (This analytical tool uses ‘cookies’ to collect standard internet log information and visitor behaviour information in an anonymous form.) This information is then used to evaluate visitors’ use of the website and to compile statistical reports on website activity.
  • Information from your computer and browser may be collected including your IP address and cookies information.
  • Any feedback you proivide about the website. This will only be used by us to develop and improve the site. We will keep the actual feedback for twelve months after which it will be deleted but analysis of feedback may be kept.

The registration page indicates if the provision of certain information is required.

By providing us with your personal data, you consent to our processing your personal data for the purposes set out below. 

You can request a copy of the information we hold about a you. Details of how to contact us are set out below.

How we use your personal information

We use personal data held about you in the following ways:

  • In order to administer and support the website and your use of the website;
  • To provide you with access to the appropriate areas and functions of the GSS website (including to particular content);
  • To contact you by email from time to time, in order to ask for your views about the website and/or any of the content on the website;
  • To contact you by email with information about news related to your job/profession/grade etc and with details of courses and events that may be relevant to you;
  • To notify you occasionally about important changes or developments to the website;
  • In order that members can access and search the GSS Member Directory facility and connect with other registered users of the website;
  • For assessment and analysis to enable us to review, develop and improve the services we offer; and/or
  • For other purposes to which you have given your consent.

We do not sell, trade or rent your information to other parties. We may provide anonymised and aggregated statistics about our site, membership base, traffic patterns and related site information to others within government. 

How we protect your personal data

We are strongly committed to data security and we take reasonable and appropriate steps to protect your personal information from unauthorised access, loss, misuse, alteration or corruption. We have put in place electronic and managerial procedures to safeguard and secure the information you provide to us. These steps include communicating this Privacy Policy to our staff and relevant contractors. Only authorised employees and contractors will have access to your personal information.

Due to the nature of the internet we cannot guarantee the security of any information you transmit to us during the course of its transmission. With this in mind, we urge you to take every precaution to protect your personal data while you are on the internet.

 Updating your personal information

If you are a registered user, you can access all the information we hold about you and you can amend or update any inaccuracies in your personal information by logging on to your personal profile. If you have any other queries regarding the information we hold about you then you should contact us at the contact addresses set out in the next section.

 Contacting us about the privacy statement

If you have any queries about this privacy policy you can contact us at the following address:

GSS Secretariat
National Statistician’s Office
Statistics House
Tredegar Park
NP10 8XG

Or email:

Please note: If you request to delete your personal data completely, or amend certain required information for registration to the site, this will result in you no longer having login rights to use the site.


Depending on your browser’s security settings, websites may be allowed to create and store small files called ‘cookies’ in a specific directory on your computer to help with the functionality of the site. Cookies cannot harm your computer in any way.

There are two types of cookies:

  • A persistent cookie remains on your computer for a period of time to allow a website to recognise you when you return and present you with the appropriate customised pages
  • Session-specific cookies are deleted when you shut down your browser. These are used on sites where you log in; the cookie ensures that you stay logged in throughout that visit.

What cookies the GSS website uses are detailed below 

Cookies for measuring site usage

Google Analytics sets cookies to help us accurately estimate the number of visitors to the website and volumes of usage. This helps  to improve the service offered to members.


Typical content


_utma randomly generated number 2 years
_utmb randomly generated number 30 minutes
_utmc randomly generated number when user exits browser
_utmz randomly generated number + info on how the site was reached (e.g. directly or via a link, organic search or paid search) 6 months

For further details on the cookies set by Google Analytics, please refer to the Google Code website.

 Cookies for using BuddyPress

BuddyPress uses cookies to ensure that you stay logged into the members only area of the site and see the content you request.


Typical content


bp-activity-oldestpage A reference number When user exits the browser