Skills Development Scotland treats your privacy very seriously. The following statements explain our policy regarding the personal information we collect about you and is equally relevant to our customers, partners and staff. 

This Privacy Policy explains why we keep information about you, what we do with that information and who we might share it with. It also explains your rights in accordance with current legislation. Skills Development Scotland aims to meet current best practice in Privacy Policy.

Statement of intent

From time to time you may be asked to submit personal information about yourself. Personal data means information about you that may identify you from that data, and this may be your name, address, telephone number, or for instance, the type of career that you may wish to pursue. Skills Development Scotland ensures that our staff work to Data Protection Principles which require information to be:

  • handled fairly and lawfully
  • kept and used for limited purposes
  • required for good reason
  • correct and up to date
  • not kept longer than necessary
  • handled confidentially
  • stored securely
  • not transferred to countries outside the European Economic Area

Why do we keep information about you?

We need to collect, hold and process information about you in order to:

  • confirm your identity and keep in touch with you by post, fax, e-mail, text message, telephone, or other method
  • understand your needs and inform you of relevant services we offer
  • help you find and prepare for employment and training opportunities
  • share information with selected partners who work with us to deliver services
  • work with employers and other partners to support skills development and job creation
  • support you if you are facing redundancy
  • meet our statutory obligations including those related to equality and diversity
  • process financial transactions related to the services you receive such as grants or payments
  • build a picture of how well we deliver our services and how we can improve in the future
  • prevent and detect fraud and corruption in the use of public funds

We work to ensure that our services are designed to give you the information that you need.

What information do we keep about you?

There are two types of information that we might need:

  • Personal Information - such as your name, date of birth, gender, contact details, unique customer reference number, notes about the services you have received, details of your current situation with regard to education, training or employment, qualifications and your future career aspirations.
  • Sensitive Personal Information - such as your racial or ethnic origin, sexual life, physical or mental health, criminal record and court proceedings, religious beliefs and details of other agencies that currently supply help and support to you of a sensitive nature.

Skills Development Scotland aim to be unobtrusive, and we will never ask unnecessary questions beyond what is required to provide you with the best service. Information may be provided by you, by a guardian or parent if you are a young person, or may be passed to us by another agency working with you. Information may be collected in a variety of ways such as paper form, online forms, e-mails, face to face communication, telephone, text messaging or image/audio recording devices.

What do we do with your information?

We use your information to help us understand your circumstances so that we can provide a better service to you.

We may provide your information to a third party "data processor" that we engage to process information on our behalf. In this circumstance, Skills Development Scotland controls the standards of confidentiality and security under which the data processor operates.

We will only use the information in ways that adhere to the Data Protection Act 1998.

Access to your information will be on a need-to-know basis, held securely, and with limited access by our own staff or staff and partners who work with us to provide the service. We shall endeavour to maintain your information in an accurate, up to date and secure manner at all times.

From time to time we may use your information in an anonymised form, combined with information of other customers in order to produce reports and statistical analysis.

How do we protect your information?

Skills Development Scotland maintains a high standard of both physical and network security designed to protect paper or electronic forms of storage to hold and process your personal information.

Information that we hold about you will be subject to rigorous safeguards to ensure that it isn't accessed or disclosed inappropriately. We also take steps so that your information is not damaged or rendered unavailable to those who have a right to see it.

To meet confidentiality requirements for our customers, stakeholders and staff, Skills Development Scotland has Confidentiality, Data Protection, Information Technology and Systems Policies in place and we ensure that staff are fully aware of these and the associated guidance in relation to your personal information. These also apply when we dispose of paper records and delete electronic information in ways that ensure that your information cannot be recreated.

When might we share your information?

We may need to share some of your personal information with partners that work with us to deliver our services to you. Our partners are obliged to keep your information secure and to use the information only to fulfil specific and agreed purposes. We will check where possible that appropriate steps have been taken by the recipient to protect your information.  If we need to share your personal information, we will first seek your consent before doing so.

In certain circumstances we may need to share personal information about you, including sensitive personal information, without your consent or knowledge. This will only be done where the disclosure is necessary, for example to prevent a risk of harm to you or someone else.

Training Providers, and other learning and support by SDS partners

Skills Development Scotland delivers a range of National Training Programmes, working with public and private learning providers and colleges across the country to ensure that everyone in Scotland has the opportunity to develop their career.  We also work with a range of other national and local initiatives with recognised partners such as Jobcentre Plus, local council employer services and employer recruitment initiatives to support you.

Skills Development Scotland ensures that our partners also follow the ICO "Privacy notices code of practice" in data sharing, data security, and control over who sees your information. Your consent to Skills Development Scotland sharing any personal, information is usually obtained when you sign and agree to support or learning from our partners. Further information can be found by contacting your local SDS Centre or contacting the SDS Data Protection Officer at the address shown at the end of this notice.

Use of cookies

During the course of any visit to Skills Development Scotland's website, the pages you see, along with something called a cookie, may be downloaded to your computer. Most, if not all, websites do this, because cookies allow the website publisher to do useful things like find out whether the computer (and probably its user) has visited the site before. This is done on a repeat visit by checking to see, and finding, the cookie left there on the last visit.

Any information that is supplied by cookies can help us to provide you with a better service and assists us to analyse the profile of our visitors. For example, if on a previous visit you went to, say, the 'Services for Individuals' pages, then we might find this out from your cookie and highlight educational information on a second visit.

Both the cookies and the embedded code provide non-personal statistical information about visits to pages on the site, the duration of individual page views, paths taken by visitors through the site, data on visitors' screen settings and other general information. Skills Development Scotland uses this type of information, as with that obtained from other cookies used on the site, to help it improve the services to its users.

Find out more about how we use cookies.

Do we use CCTV or other recording devices?

We have installed CCTV systems at some of our Centres used by members of the public. This is solely for the purposes of public safety and crime prevention/detection. Signs are displayed in all locations notifying you that CCTV is in operation and explaining who to contact for further information. Our systems do not record audio.  The policy on the use of CCTV is reviewed annually.

We will only disclose CCTV images to others to meet the purposes stated above.

Images captured by CCTV will not be kept longer than is absolutely necessary, however we may hold images longer than normal where a crime is being investigated or there is a statutory obligation on us to do so.

You have the right to see CCTV images of yourself and be provided with a copy of the image we currently retain, where this is practicable.

Skills Development Scotland sometimes makes use of creative digital technologies such as digital photography and video/audio recordings to support our delivery. You will be advised in advance about your rights. You have the right to refuse. If you agree to participate, we will require you to sign a consent form covering images and audio in which you appear.

Skills Development Scotland sometimes uses case studies to highlight the success of our work - to encourage other customers. This may be in an anonymised form, or with your consent, use your personal information. Skills Development Scotland respects your rights to privacy where this is refused.

Our Information Charter

Our Information Charter sets out the standards that you can expect from Skills Development Scotland in relation to your personal information.

Your rights

You have the right to withdraw your consent and request that we stop processing your personal information relative to any service that we provide to you. This however may prevent us from delivering a full service appropriate to your needs. Where possible, we will seek to comply with your request but may be required to continue holding or processing information to comply with a legal requirement placed on us.

You have the right to instruct us to provide you with any personal information we hold about you. Provision of such information:-

  • may be subject to payment of a nominal fee
  • will be subject to your provision of evidence of your identity (for this purpose, we will accept a photocopy of your passport certified by a solicitor or bank plus an original copy of a utility bill showing your current address).

How to request Personal Information

The Data Protection Act 1998 protects personal information. Under the Act you have the right to ask if we process any personal information relating to you. If you request your own personal data under the Act, this request is known as a 'subject access request' or a  SAR form. You can expect to receive an acknowledgment to your request within 3 working days. If you would like to make a SAR relating to personal data held in respect of any services provided by Skills Development Scotland you should send it to the following address:

Write to:
Data Protection Officer
Monteith House
11 George Square
G2 1DY


Policy amendments

We may update this privacy policy by posting a new version on the website. You should check this page occasionally to ensure you are happy with any changes and any substantial changes will be highlighted.

We may also notify you of changes to our privacy policy by email.

Data Controller

Under the Data Protection Act 1998, organisations that process personal information (personal data) must notify the Information Commissioner's Office unless they are exempt from doing so. Data controllers are required to inform the Information Commissioner's Office of certain details about their processing of personal information. The Commissioner uses these details to make an entry describing the processes in the Data Protection Register and this is available to the public for inspection on the Information Commissioner's website -

Registration is a basic principle of data protection that the public should know (or should be able to find out) who is carrying out the processing of personal information as well as other details about the processing (such as for what reason it is being carried out).

The data controller responsible in respect of the information collected by Skills Development Scotland is identified within the Information Commissioner's Register under registration number Z1445093 as Skills Development Scotland.


If you have any questions about this privacy policy, data retention or our treatment of your personal information, please write to the Data Protection Officer, Skills Development Scotland, Monteith House, 11 George Square, Glasgow G2 1DY.

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