Privacy policy - Visit someone in prison

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We have updated our privacy policy. It explains how we use your data. View the privacy policy.

Privacy policy

This privacy policy explains why the HM Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS) collects personal data when you use the 'Visit someone in prison' service.

This policy also explains:

  • how we store this data
  • what we do with it
  • how you can get a copy of the data we have about you
  • how you can complain if you think we’ve done something wrong

This service is managed by HMPPS, an executive agency of the Ministry of Justice (MOJ). MOJ is the data controller for the personal information we hold.

HMPPS collects and processes personal data so that it can safely and securely provide prison services, including those related to the management and rehabilitation of offenders.

About personal information

Personal data is information about you as an individual. It can be your name, address or telephone number. It can also include information about the person you are requesting to visit in prison.

We know how important it is to protect your privacy and to comply with data protection laws. We will keep your personal data safe and will only disclose it where it is lawful to do so, or with your consent.

Types of personal data we process

We only process personal data that is relevant for the services we are providing to you. This includes:

  • your name, date of birth, email address and phone number
  • the name, date of birth, prisoner number and location of the person you want to visit
  • the names and dates of birth of any additional visitors

We also collect site-usage information which allows us to see how the service is being used in order to allow us to improve it. This information does not contain any personal data. It includes:

  • questions, queries or feedback you leave if you send a message via feedback
  • your IP address, and details of which version of web browser you used
  • information on how you use the site, using cookies and page tagging techniques to help us improve the website

This helps us to:

  • improve the site by monitoring how you use it
  • respond to any feedback you send us, if you’ve asked us to
  • provide you with information about local services if you want it

We can’t personally identify you using your site usage data.

Purpose of processing and the lawful basis for the process

We collect personal data so that you can request to visit someone in prison. We may also use the data to contact you to offer you the opportunity to take part in future research to improve our services.

Prisons and Young Offender Institutions need this information to ensure visits are safe and secure for visitors, offenders and staff.

Who the information may be shared with

We sometimes need to share the personal information we process with the individual themselves and also with other organisations. Where this is necessary we will comply with all aspects of the data laws. The organisations we share your personal information with are:

Details of transfers to third country and safeguards

All data collected by this service is stored within the European Economic Area (EEA). However, due to the global nature of the internet, the data sent to and from the database may transit through countries outside of the EEA. Data is not stored in a non-EEA country. Any transfers made will be in full compliance with all aspects of the data protection law.

How long we keep data

Data is retained for seven years in accordance with HMPPS retention policy.

Access to personal information

You can find out if we hold any personal data about you by making a ‘subject access request’. To make a subject access request please contact:

Offender and ex-offenders;
Branston Registry
Building 16, S & T Store
Burton Road
DE14 3EG

All others;
Disclosure Team
Post point 10.38
102 Petty France

When we ask you for personal data

Whenever we ask for personal data, we promise to:

  • only ask for the information we need
  • keep it safe and make sure nobody can access it unless authorised
  • make sure we do not keep the data longer than needed
  • only share the data with other organisations for legitimate purposes
  • consider any request you make to correct, stop storing or delete your personal data

We also promise to make it easy for you to:

  • tell us at any time if you want us to stop storing your personal data
  • make a complaint with the supervisory authority

How we manage online sessions

This service can be used to make a prison visit request. Your session is active for 20 minutes even if you close your browser, or navigate away from this service. During this time, personal information about you may be visible to anyone with access to your computer.

Your data is held in memory during the duration of the session; this is cleared after 20 minutes of inactivity.

More information

You can get more details on:

  • agreements we have with other organisations for sharing information
  • when we can pass on personal information without telling you, for example, to help with the prevention or detection of crime or to produce anonymised statistics
  • instructions we give to staff on how to collect, use or delete your personal information
  • how we check that the information we hold is accurate and up-to-date
  • how to make a complaint

For more information about the above issues, please contact:

MoJ Data Protection Officer
Post point 10.38
102 Petty France

or email:

For more information on how and why your information is processed please see the information provided when you accessed our services or were contacted by us.


When we ask you for information, we will keep to the law. If you think that your information has been handled incorrectly, you can contact the Information Commissioner for independent advice about data protection at:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Tel: 0303 123 1113

Changes to this policy

We may change this privacy policy. In that case, the ‘last updated’ date at the bottom of this page will also change. Any changes to this privacy policy will apply to you and your data immediately.

If these changes affect how your personal data is processed, MOJ will take reasonable steps to let you know.

Last updated on 21 May 2024