Part 1 - Power to require account information

Data Protection and Digital Information Bill – in the House of Commons am 4:15 pm ar 29 Tachwedd 2023.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Power to give account information notices

(1) The Department may give an account information notice to a person of a prescribed description requiring the person to provide information as set out in paragraph 2 in connection with accounts that the person administers or to which the person has access.

(2) The power may be exercised only for the purpose of assisting the Department in identifying cases which merit further consideration to establish whether relevant benefits are being paid or have been paid in accordance with the statutory provisions and rules of law relating to those benefits.

Account information notices

2 (1) An account information notice is a notice requiring a person to give the Department—

(a) the names of the holders of accounts that the person identifies as being matching accounts in relation to a specified relevant benefit,

(b) other specified information relating to the holders of those accounts, and

(c) such further information in connection with those accounts as may be specified.

(2) An account information notice—

(a) may require information relating to a person who holds a matching account even if the person does not claim a relevant benefit;

(b) may not require information relating to any person who does not hold a matching account.

(3) “Matching accounts”, in relation to a specified relevant benefit, are accounts—

(a) linked to the receipt of that benefit, and

(b) in relation to which specified criteria relevant to that benefit, or specified criteria including such criteria, are met (for example, criteria about account balances or transactions outside the United Kingdom).

(4) Depending on the provision made by an account information notice, an account linked to the receipt of a relevant benefit may be a matching account if specified criteria are met in relation to a combination of accounts that includes that account.

(5) An account is to be regarded as linked to the receipt of a particular relevant benefit if it is—

(a) an account into which the benefit is (or is to be) paid,

(b) an account into which the benefit has been paid, or

(c) an account linked to an account within paragraph (a) or (b).

(6) An account is to be regarded as linked to another if the same person holds both accounts.

(7) An account information notice may not be framed in such a way as to require a person to interrogate historic data.

(8) Data is historic, in relation to a day when a person carries out a process to identify matching accounts, if it relates to a time before the beginning of the period of one year ending with that day.

(9) Information provided to the Department on a particular day in response to an account information notice must relate to accounts identified by means of a process carried out no more than seven days before that day.

(10) In this paragraph and paragraph 3 “specified” means—

(a) in the case of a relevant benefit, specified or denoted by a code in an account information notice;

(b) in every other case, specified or described in an account information notice.

Further provision about account information notices

3 (1) An account information notice may require the provision of documents, including the provision of a legible and intelligible copy of information recorded otherwise than in a legible form, and references in this Schedule to the provision of information are to be read accordingly.

(2) An account information notice may require information to be provided at specified intervals for a period not exceeding one year from the date of the notice.

(3) An account information notice other than one within sub-paragraph (2) must state the date by which or the period within which the information must be provided.

(4) An account information notice must give details about—

(a) rights of appeal, and

(b) the consequences of not complying with the notice.

(5) An account information notice may require information—

(a) to be compiled or collated in a specified manner;

(b) to be provided in a specified way (including by electronic transmission to a specified address or portal).

(6) The Department may vary or cancel an account information notice by notice to the person to whom it was given.

Restrictions on processing and data protection

(1) Except as provided by sub-paragraph (2), processing of information carried out in compliance with an account information notice does not breach—

(a) any obligation of confidence owed by the person processing the information, or

(b) any other restriction on the processing of information (however imposed).

(2) The power conferred by paragraph 1 does not authorise, and is not exercisable to require—

(a) processing of personal data that would contravene the data protection legislation (but in determining whether processing of personal data would do so, that power is to be taken into account);

(b) processing of information that is prohibited by any of Parts 1 to 7 or Chapter 1 of Part 9 of the Investigatory Powers Act 2016.

Use of information

5 (1) Information provided to the Department in response to an account information notice may be used by the Department only for the purposes of, or for any purposes connected with, the exercise of departmental functions.

(2) “Departmental functions” has the same meaning as in section 127 of the Welfare Reform Act 2012.