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In an age of Freedom of Information and Data Protection there are many legitimate concerns about privacy and the actions of Private Investigators. On this page we will try to explain what we will do to reconcile these concerns in order to protect our clients and members of the public.

  Data Controller Back to Contents

We are registered with the Information Commissioner as "Data Controllers" which means that we are responsible for the fair and lawful processing of personal data and will protect that data appropriately. In nearly all cases however when acting on the instructions from clients, we will be acting as "Data Processors" on behalf of the client. This means that the client will have to demonstrate a legitimate and lawful interest in obtaining the data and will ultimately responsible for the retention or disposal of that data at the conclusion of the enquiry.

In practical terms that means that we don't keep data on individuals that we discover as part of our work, but pass it on to the client. We keep only such records as necessary for an on-going investigation and to satisfy HM Revenue and Customs. Unless specifically requested we will not keep any data once we have concluded a case. We don't have old "case files" in a dusty filing cabinet in the corner of the office.

  Personal Protection Back to Contents

We have a responsibility to make sure that the client has a legitimate and lawful interest in obtaining the data we have been requested to find.

A good example of this is when we often get asked if we can track down a "long lost girlfriend" or "childhood sweetheart". We can, of course, do so and have been successful in a great many cases. We won't however provide the location or contact details of the subject found to the client for obvious saftely and privacy concerns. We are happy instead to pass on the client's details to the subject and they are then free to get in touch with the client should they wish to do so. Any other course of action would not only be unsafe, but would be breaking the Law.

Another example is when a client suspects a partner of cheating in a relationship. We frequently get asked if we can "bug" their partner's car in order to determine if they really have been going to gym on a Thursday evening or somewhere else entirely. This is a legal "grey area" and is not normally recommended (unless the car belonges to the Client) and instead we would prefer to depend on alternative measures to discover what was really going on.

It goes without saying that we won't hack into someone's email or phone messages for anyone.

Every case is different and it can sometimes be difficult to judge the exact circumstances. If that happens, for the safety and protection of all involved, we would recommend asking your local solicitor to issue instructions on your behalf.