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Personal data means any information relating to a living person that can be used directly or indirectly to identify them. 

For example:

  • Name
  • Staff or student number
  • Location data like an IP address (the string of numbers that identifies a computer/device connected to the internet and is linked to your online activity)
  • Physical characteristics
  • Genetic information
  • Cultural information

Extra care must be taken with personal information that is sensitive. This is called special category data, and covers:

  • Health data
  • Race
  • Ethnicity
  • Religious beliefs
  • Politics
  • Sex life
  • Sexual orientation
  • Biometrics (where used for identity purposes)
  • Trade union membership
  • Genetics

And information about children and criminal convictions or offences has extra protection too.