PREAMBLE: This policy applies to the collection, use, disclosure and management of the personal information of clients of McLay.
1. Accountability – The Privacy Officer of McLay is accountable for compliance with these policies and procedures regarding the manner in which McLay collects, uses, discloses and otherwise manages personal information. McLay is responsible for personal information in its custody and control.
2. Identifying the Purposes for Collecting and Using Personal Information – McLay collects and uses personal information to provide advice and information on personal money management issues and to provide advice, information and options for debt repayment to McLay clients by dealing with their various creditors. The personal information collected by McLay includes information on clients’ debts, income, assets, living expenses, employment situation, general financial status and their relationships with various creditors.
McLay also uses the aggregate demographic information from the personal information collected to identify services and programs that may benefit the communities we serve; to target our marketing and awareness programs; and to maintain the ongoing financial support and cooperation of our stakeholders. No individual can be identified through this information.
McLay personnel are trained to explain the purposes of collecting the information to any client who asks for an explanation. The purpose for which personal information is collected and used by McLay personnel is communicated to each client at or prior to the time of collection.
3. Getting the Client’s Consent – McLay will not collect, use or disclose a client’s personal information without the express consent of the client.
4. Limits for Collecting Personal Information – McLay personnel collect personal information about individuals only where such individual is a client or potential client of McLay. Our clients’ personal information is not used or disclosed for purposes other than those for which it was collected, except with the consent of the client or as required by law.
5. Limits for Disclosing and Retaining Personal Information – McLay discloses personal information only for the purposes for which it was collected. It keeps information for as long as it is required for the stated purposes.
McLay retains the hardcopy client files for the period required by law and then proceeds to have such files shredded by a licensed and bonded third party. McLay electronic file retention policy provides that electronic files are kept active until process is complete. After this time, the electronic files are archived and maintained indefinitely.
Personal information that is no longer required to fulfill the identified purposes or that is not required to be retained, pursuant to any applicable law is destroyed, erased or made anonymous. McLay reviews the personal information in its custody and control on a periodic basis in order to ensure that personal information no longer required to be retained has been destroyed, erased or made anonymous.
6. Keeping Personal Information Accurate – McLay ensures, to the best of its ability, that the information it holds is accurate, complete, current and relevant to the identified purposes.
McLay maintain strict confidentiality agreement with those who have access to the personal information being held by McLay. Any corrections to the information can be given to those parties. McLay recognizes that it is crucial that creditors of its clients have current and accurate information in order to make important decisions regarding the acceptance of our client debt management programs as well as other credit decisions.
7. Safeguarding Personal Information – McLay ensures that personal information is stored in electronic and physical files that are physically secure. Security measures include storage of files in locked filing facilities when not in use; secure locks on the offices of McLay and its satellite offices. Staff passwords to access electronic files are controlled and employ high-level encryption practices. Distribution of personal information regarding clients is restricted to the employees of McLay and creditors of McLay clients. The employees of McLay are subject to a Confidentiality Agreement and will abide by these privacy policies and procedures. Physical McLay files containing personal information are shredded under the supervision of McLay employees.
8. Individual Access to Personal Information – Upon written request, McLay will provide an individual with confirmation as to whether McLay has personal information about them, what the information is, what it is being used for and to whom the information has been disclosed.
Individuals should send their written request for access, with contact information and enough information about themselves to identify them to the Privacy Officer of McLay. McLay will respond within 30 days of receiving any access request at no cost to the individual. If the individual can provide proof of an error in the personal information held by McLay, then McLay will amend the information and where appropriate, send the corrected information to others who have used the incorrect information. If McLay denies the individual\’s request for access, it will state the reasons for denial.
9. Handling Individual Complaints and Questions – Individuals may send any complaints regarding McLay’s compliance with its own privacy policies and procedures to the Privacy Officer of McLay. The Privacy Officer or designate will investigate the complaint and respond to the individual. If the individual’s complaint is justified, McLay will change its policies and procedures related to the matter so that other individuals will not experience the same problem.