Privacy Statement



Laois County Council has created this privacy statement in order to demonstrate our firm commitment to your privacy. By visiting Laois.ie you are accepting the practices described in this Privacy Notice.

This statement relates to our privacy practices in connection with the aforementioned websites. We are not responsible for the content or pricacy practices of other websites. Any external links to other websites are identifiable in the link tooltip as an external site. Some technical terms used in this statement are explained at the end of this page.

General Statement
Personal Information
Information given to us
Automatic Information
Cookies
Sharing of Information
How secure is the information?
What Info can I access online?
Links to other websites
Glossary of Technical Terms Used
Disclaimer
Amendments
More Information/Contact

General Statement
Laois County Council fully respects your right to privacy, and we will not collect any personal information about you on this website without your clear permission. Any information which you volunteer to Laois County Council’s websites will be treated with the highest standard of security and confidentiality, strictly in accordance with the Data Protection Acts, 1988 & 2003.

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What Personal Information About Customers Does Laois County Council Gather?
The information we learn from customers helps us personalise and continually improve your online experience at Laois.ie and our other websites. Here are the types of information we gather:

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Information You Give Us:
We receive and store any information you enter on our website or give us in any other way. You can choose not to provide certain information, but then you might not be able to take advantage of many of our features. Where a user voluntarily provides personal information, the data will be used for analysis, research or customer service purposes only. Any personal data provided by you to us will be held in accordance with the data protection principles set out in the Data Protection (Amendment) Act, 2003, the Data Protection Act, 1988, Electronic Commerce Act, 2000, and other relevant EU and Irish legislation.

We do not store any record of your credit card or Laser number. Any credit or debit card data is transferred directly from your computer to our card services partners’ server over a secure, encrypted connection. Our card services partners are the Local Government Computer Services Board (LGCSB) and RealEx.

Laois County Council assures you that the identity of all who contact us through this website is kept confidential: we do not rent, sell, or exchange mailing lists, or otherwise disclose such information to third parties, except as may be required by law, or through voluntary cooperation with law enforcement authorities if we judge that such cooperation is necessary to combat fraud or other crime.

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Automatic Information:
For general web browsing no personal information is revealed to us, although certain statistical information is available to us from our website logs. For example, like many websites, we obtain certain types of information when your web browser (browsers are pieces of software that allow you to access the internet; examples include: Internet Explorer, Netscape, Opera, Mozilla, etc.) accesses Laois.ie or our other websites. See below for examples. Also, to ensure the security of your online account information in our ePayments area, we use cookies to ensure that security is maintained by preventing the “hijacking” of your online identity (see below for more on cookies). The only information that is stored in that cookie is a key code which can be used by our server only during the current visit to verify your identity online. The cookie becomes unusable after either the user logs out or after 20 minutes of inactivity on our website.

Examples of information collected:

Internet Protocol (IP) address used to connect your computer to the internet (for example 192.168.88.21)
Login — if using our account services
Email address — if you email any of our public email addresses
Computer and connection information such as browser type and version, operating system, platform, referring url and pages visited
Laois County Council will make no attempt to identify individual visitors or to associate the technical details listed above with any individual, except in cases where criminal activity has taken place (i.e. in response to a “hacking” incident). It is the policy of Laois County Council never to disclose such technical information in respect of individual website visitors to a third party (except for law-enforcement bodies and then only in response to illegal activity such as “hacking”; also our Internet Service Providor which records such data on our behalf and which is bound by confidentiality provisions in this regard), unless obliged to disclose such information by a rule of law. The technical information will be used only by Laois County Council, and only for statistical and other administrative purposes. You should not that technical details, which we cannot associate with any identifiable individual, do not constitute “personal data” for the purposes of the Data Protection Acts, 1988 & 2003.

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Cookies:
Cookies are alphanumeric identifiers that we transfer to your computer’s hard drive through your web browser to enable our systems to recognize your browser and to provide security while you access your online ePayment account information.

The “Help” portion of the toolbar on most browsers will tell you how to prevent your browser from accepting new cookies, how to have the browser notify you when you receive a new cookie, or how to disable cookies altogether. However, cookies allow you to take full advantage of some of Laois.ie’s features, and we recommend that you leave them turned on.

To ensure the security of your online account information in our ePayments area, we use cookies to ensure that security is maintained by preventing the “hijacking” of your online identity (see below for more on cookies). The only information that is stored in that cookie is a key code which can be used by our server only during the current visit to verify your identity online. The cookie becomes unusable after either the user logs out or after 20 minutes of inactivity on our website.

We have also added a cookie feature to the Online Planning Information Area to allow repeat users of this service to have the system remember their name and email address on return visits to the Documents page. This page clearly informs the user that a cookie will be created and gives them the option of not using cookies. These cookies are used only to facilitate the online declaration and are not used by the website for any other purpose.

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Does Laois.ie Share the Information it Receives?
Rarely. In cases where there is a statutory requirement to share information with a government agency or other local authority or where your information must be shared with another agency in order to answer a customer query, then the minimum amount of information required will be shared in an appropriate manner. Generally, information is shared with other agencies as an aggregate rather than as a specific piece of data. For example, Laois County Council must make annual landfill returns which include the total tonnage collected but would not include information on individual customers utilizing our refuse collection services.

We may choose to release automatic information (see above) and other information received to the website to companies and organizations for fraud protection and credit risk reduction. Information of this type will only be shared about users who have caused or attempted to cause damage to Laois.ie or other council websites. This type of information would be shared only as a result of “hacking” attacks, fraud or other illegal activities.

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How Secure is Information About Me?
We do not collect credit card information or other payment methods via this website. All transactions are completed via the Local Government Computer Services Board (LGCSB)/RealEx online payment processing engine to ensure maximum protection for your account information.

It is important for you to protect against unauthorized access to your password and to your computer. Be sure to sign off when finished using our ePayments Account Viewer tool and to sign off from your computer when using a shared computer.

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What Information Can I Access Online?
Laois.ie and the other council websites will make as much public information available online as possible in order to improve the transparency of our organization.

You can also access your Account details and Litter and Dog Fine details provided you are able to supply the requested information to do so. This is done to ensure confidentiality. Going forward, we plan to enable online employment applications and these will be made available only to the applicant on an “account” basis.

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Links To Other Websites:
In order to make more information easier to find for our users, Laois.ie and the other Council websites link to content owned and hosted by other local authorities, government agencies, companies, organizations, etc. We are not responsible for the content or privacy practices of other websites. Any external links to other websites are clearly identifiable as such. We link to other websites that provide information relevant to members of the public living in Laois and to websites whose content we think would be of interest or assistance to those planning a visit to Laois. Laois County Council makes no promises or recommendations about the quality of services provided by groups owning the websites we link to.

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Glossary of Technical Terms Used:
Web browser
The piece of software you use to read web pages. Examples are Microsoft Internet Explorer, Netscape Navigator and Opera.

IP Address
The identifying details for your computer (or your internet company’s computer), expressed in “internet protocol” code (for example 192.168.72.34). Every computer connected to the web has a unique IP address, although the address may not be the same every time a connection is made.

Cookies

See above

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Disclaimer:
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Laois County Council, its Councillors, directors, employees, servants and agents, affiliates or other representatives and their respective parent and subsidiary companies, shall not be liable in respect of any claims, emergencies, demands, causes of action, damages, losses, expenses, including without limitation, reasonable legal fees and costs of proceedings arising out of or in connection with the use and/or dissemination of personal information relating to you in accordance with this privacy policy and your consents.

You should be aware that where you link to another website from the Laois County Council or other Council websites, that Laois County Council has no control over that other website. Laois County Council has no responsibility for the privacy practices of other websites.

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Amendments:
Laois County Council reserves the right in its sole discretion to amend this privacy statement at any time, and you should regularly check this privacy statement for any amendments.

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More Information/Contact:
If you have any questions about this privacy statement, the practices or your dealings with this website you can contact us on:

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Webmaster
IT Section
Laois County Council
Áras an Chontae,
JFL Ave.,
Portlaoise,
Co. Laois
Email:webmaster@Laois.ie