St Martin-in-the-Fields Trust Data Protection Policy


This policy was prepared by: Katy Shaw, Director

It was approved by the Trustees on: 6 July 2017

It became operational on: 6 July 2017

Next review date: January 2018


St Martin-in-the Fields Trust (the Trust) collects and stores information about previous and current supporters and donors, and potential future donors. This includes details of everyone the Trust has a relationship with and needs to contact.

This policy describes how this personal data must be collected, handled and stored to meet the Trust’s data protection standards – and to comply with the law.

Why this policy exists

This data protection policy ensures that the Trust:

  • Complies with data protection law and follows good practice
  • Protects the rights of staff, donors and partners
  • Is open about how it stores and processes individuals’ data
  • Protects itself from the risks of a data breach

Data protection law

The Data Protection Act 1998 describes how organisations – including St Martin-in-the-Fields Trust – must collect, handle and store personal information. It will be replaced in May 2018 by a modernised and more rigorous regime.

These rules apply regardless of whether data is stored electronically, on paper or on other materials.

To comply with the law, personal information must be collected and used fairly, stored safely and not disclosed unlawfully.

The Data Protection Act is underpinned by eight important principles. These say that personal data must:

  1. Be processed fairly and lawfully
  2. Be obtained only for specific, lawful purposes
  3. Be adequate, relevant and not excessive
  4. Be accurate and kept up to date
  5. Not be held for longer than necessary
  6. Processed in accordance with the rights of data subjects
  7. Be protected in appropriate ways
  8. Not be transferred outside the European Economic Area (EEA), unless that country or territory also ensures an adequate level of protection



Policy scope

This policy applies to:

  • The registered office of the Trust (5 St Martin’s Place, London WC2N 4JJ)
  • All paid staff and volunteers of the Trust
  • All contractors, suppliers and other people working on behalf of the Trust (whether on behalf of other entities in the St Martin-in-the-Fields family or otherwise)

It applies to all data that the company holds relating to identifiable individuals, even if that information technically falls outside of the Data Protection Act. This can include:


  • Names of individuals
  • Postal addresses
  • Email addresses
  • Telephone numbers
  • Information on past and current donations
  • Correspondence with supporters and potential supporters


Data Protection risks

This policy helps to protect the Trust from data security risks, including:

  • Breaches of confidentiality: for instance, information being given out inappropriately.
  • Failing to offer choice: for instance, all individuals should be free to choose how the company uses data relating to them.
  • Reputational damage: for instance, the company could suffer if hackers successfully gained access to sensitive data.



Everyone who works for or with the Trust has responsibility for ensuring that data is collected, stored and handled appropriately. Ultimate responsibility for this policy lies with the Development Director and the Board of Trustees.



  • The only people able to access data covered by this policy should be those who need it for their work.
  • Data should not be shared informally. When access to confidential information is required, employees can request it from their line managers.
  • The Trust will provide training to all employees to help them understand their responsibilities when handling data.
  • Employees should keep all data secure, but taking sensible precautions and following these guidelines:
  1. Strong passwords should be used and they should never be shared
  2. Personal data should not be disclosed to unauthorised people, either within the company or externally.
  3. Data should be regularly reviewed and updated if it is found to be out of date. If no longer required, it should be deleted and disposed of.
  4. Employees should request help from their line manager if they are unsure about any aspect of data protection.


These rules describe how and where data should be safely stored. Questions about storing data safely can be directed to the Development Director.

When data is stored on paper, it should be kept in a secure place where unauthorised people cannot see it.

These guidelines also apply to data that is usually stored electronically but has been printed out for some reason:

  • When not required, the paper or files should be kept in a locked drawer or filing cabinet.
  • Employees should make sure paper and printouts are not left where unauthorised people could see them, like on a printer.
  • Data printouts should be shredded and disposed of securely when no longer required.
  • Data in hard copy should not be taken off site, unless specific permission has been obtained from the Development Director.


When data is stored electronically, it must be protected from unauthorised access, accidental deletion and malicious hacking attempts.

  • Data should be protected by strong passwords that are changed regularly and never shared between employees.
  • If data is stored on removable media, these should be kept locked away securely when not being used.
  • Data should only be stored on designated drives and servers, and should only be uploaded to an approved cloud computing services. Data currently held on the cloud based database Donorfy is hosted in Microsoft Azure, a secure cloud computing platform. Donorfy is hosted in Microsoft Azure’s European Azure data centres in Republic of Ireland and the Netherlands. The data does not travel to US unless you connect it to services that are US-based. So you should be aware that when integrated with US-hosted services such as MailChimp the data necessary to perform the integration does transfer from our European Azure data centres the EU to their servers.
  • Servers containing personal data should be sited in a secure location, away from general office space.
  • Data should be backed up frequently. Those backups should be tested regularly, in line with the company’s standard backup procedures.
  • Data should never be saved directly to laptops or other mobile devices like tablets or smart phones.
  • All servers and computers containing data should be protected by approved security software and a firewall.
  • When working with personal data, employees should ensure that the screens of their computers are always locked when left unattended.
  • Personal data should not be shared informally. In particular, it should never be sent by email, as this form of communication is not secure.
  • Data must be encrypted before being transferred electronically.

Personal data will not usually be transferred outside of the European Economic Area. Where data screening is undertaken within the EEA or USA, SMITF requires its contractors to agree in writing to abide by the relevant data protection requirements.

  • Employees should not save copies of personal data to their own computers. Always access and update the central copy of any data.


The law requires the Trust to take reasonable steps to ensure data is kept accurate and up to date.

It is the responsibility of all employees who work with data to take reasonable steps to ensure it is kept as accurate and up to date as possible.

  • Data will be held in as few places as necessary. Staff should not create any unnecessary additional data sets.
  • Staff should take every opportunity to ensure that data is updated.
  • The Trust will make it easy for data subjects to update the information the company holds about them (or instance, via the website).
  • Data should be updated as inaccuracies are discovered. For instance, if a customer can no longer be reached on their stored telephone number, it should be removed from the database.
  • It is the development team’s responsibility to ensure that the Donorfy database is checked against the Fundraising Preference Service every six months.


All individuals who are the subject of personal data held by the Trust are entitled to:

  • Ask what information the company holds about them and why.
  • Ask how to gain access to it.
  • Be informed about how it is kept up to date.
  • Be informed how the company is meeting its data protection obligations.

If an individual contacts the company requesting this information, this is called a subject access request.

Subject access requests from individuals should be made by email, addressed to the data controller at The data controller can supply a standard request form, although individuals do not have to use this.

Individuals will be charged £10 per subject access request. The data controller will aim to provide the relevant data within 40 days.

The data controller will always verify the identity of anyone making a subject access request before handing over any information.


In certain circumstances, the Data Protection Act allows personal data to be disclosed to law enforcement agencies without the consent of the data subject.

Under these circumstances, the Trust will disclose requested data. However, the Trust will ensure the request is legitimate, seeking assistance from the Board of Trustees and from the Trust’s legal advisers where necessary.


The  Trust aims to ensure that individuals are aware that their data is being processed and that they understand:

  • How the data is being used.
  • How to exercise their rights

To these ends, the company has a privacy statement, setting out how data relating to individuals is used by the company.

This is available on request. A version of this statement is also available on the company’s website.