Kara Project privacy notice

This notice explains what personal data (information) we hold about you, how we collect, how we use and may share information about you.  We are required to give you this information under data protection law.

Who we are

Kent County Council (KCC) collects, uses and is responsible for certain personal information about you. When we do so we are regulated under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which applies across the European Union (including in the United Kingdom) and we are responsible as ‘controller’ of that personal information for the purposes of those laws. Our Data Protection Officer is Benjamin Watts

The Kara project is a 1 year project where KCC is working with Alcove Limited to provide a service designed to support you during and after the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. The project will provide you with technology, in the form of a care phone, that enables you to make and receive voice and video calls. The purpose of the project is to ensure you continue to receive the care and support you need whilst mitigating the impact COVID-19 (coronavirus) is having on support services within the county.

Personal information we collect and use

Over the course of the Kara Project, Kent County Council may collect the following personal information when you provide it to us:

Personal data

  • personal information, for example your social care ID, name, address, telephone number, date of birth, gender
  • contact details for members of your family and support network
  • any information you give us in response to a survey request from us about your views on the service / devices (where applicable).

We may also collection information about :

  • your racial or ethnic origin, religious or philosophical beliefs, collected only for equality monitoring and anonymised for any reporting purposes
  • your sexual orientation, collected only for equality monitoring and anonymised for any reporting purposes
  • any health conditions or disabilities that may apply to you
  • you and your circumstances
  • any health and safety concerns that may be relevant
  • your needs and wishes.

Collecting and sharing your personal data

In the course of working with you for the Kara Project, Alcove will continue to supply the information on the usage of the devices to KCC. This will enable us to monitor the effectiveness of the devices and how they are being used across different areas of the county.

Alcove will provide summary data at the individual level through the report to KCC on the following:

  • names of clients (provided by KCC initially)
  • total number of inbound and outbound calls; by provider, responder (e.g. friend, family member), and concierge
  • average duration of calls; by provider, responders, concierge
  • the number of audio and video calls.

KCC and Alcove will not at any point have access to or record the content of any calls, either telephone or video.

Alcove receives alerts from your device for certain situations which may prompt investigating to ensure your wellbeing (e.g. not answering when called). These alerts and the associated data will be shared with your family members if they have elected to be the primary person to check on you and resolve any alerts triggered. You will be asked to verify that you consent to the identified family member taking on this role, and have this information shared with them.

Evaluating the service

All services provided by KCC are ultimately funded by public money, and so these services must always be thoroughly evaluated to ensure they are achieving positive outcomes for people, and the money is well spent.

The summary data will be used for evaluation purposes only by our Analytics team. This data is required by them to provide an evaluation of the impact of this service during the crisis. The key metrics for use of the device are the number of inbound/outbound calls and the average duration of these calls made by the user. This is separated into; provider, responder, and concierge as these are different types of use of the device. In addition, the number of audio versus video calls is needed as a major benefit of the service is the ability to make video calls which is expected to significantly reduce social isolation for service users. This data is therefore necessary for the evaluation of the service. Only overall volumes and averages will be collected, and data will not show specific individuals to whom calls were made, only what type of role they hold on the service users’ support network (e.g. provider, responder, concierge). Any reports resulting from this data will only present aggregated (total) data. Individuals will not be identifiable in any reports.

This data sharing with Alcove enables us to ensure you continue to receive the care and support you need in the safest and most effective way possible, particularly during the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic. Further information on Alcove’s specific privacy policy can be found via their website.

KCC will share personal information with law enforcement or other authorities if required by applicable law.

In the unlikely event Alcove are not able to support you, then they will refer you through to the ‘Kent Together’ team so that they can help provide you with the support you need. For more information visit the Kent Together website.

How we use your personal data

Once you are enrolled on to the Kara Project, KCC will limit the sharing of information with Alcove to the following details:

  • name
  • gender
  • phone number
  • email address of client (if applicable)
  • address (including post code)
  • care provider that is currently delivering care and support services to you (if applicable).

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, we want to minimise the face-to-face contact where possible, therefore the devices will be posted to you with a set of instructions on what to do next.

We also use your personal information to:

  • create a secure and comprehensive record of all of the work that we do with and for you in the Kara Project:
    • your name, address, telephone number, date of birth
    • contact details for members of your family and support network
  • process complaints and compliments regarding the services we have provided
  • analyse the service that we are providing through the Kara Project:
    • statistical reports output by our computer systems and data provided by Alcove Ltd. The reports will be anonymised, and therefore Individuals will not be identifiable in any reports.

How long will your personal data be kept

As part of the Kara project, your records will be maintained by Alcove for the duration of the contract (April 2020 to April 2021) or until you are no longer using this service. We will maintain a record on our social care system of you being in receipt of this service and our records will be retained for no longer than 10 years from the last involvement with adult social care before being securely destroyed.

Reasons we collect and use your personal information

When we collect your personal data, we rely on the following legal bases:

  • Processing is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in the controller
  • Processing is necessary for compliance with a legal obligation to which the controller is subject

When we collect your ‘special categories of personal data’, we rely on the following legal bases:

  • Processing is necessary for the provision of health or social care or treatment or the management of health or social care systems and services on the basis of Union or Member State law or pursuant to contract with a health professional and subject to the conditions and safeguards.
  • Processing is necessary for the provision of health or social care or treatment or the management of health or social care systems and services.
  • Processing is necessary for statistical purposes (which shall be proportionate to the aim pursued, respect the essence of the right to data protection and provide for suitable and specific measures to safeguard the fundamental rights and the interests of the data subject).

Your rights

Under the GDPR you have rights which you can exercise free of charge that allow you to:

  • know what we are doing with your information and why we are doing it
  • ask to see what information we hold about you (subject access request)
  • ask us to correct any mistakes in the information we hold about you
  • make a complaint to the Information Commissioners Office.

Depending on our reason for using your information you may also be entitled to:

  • ask us to delete information we hold about you
  • have your information transferred electronically to yourself or to another organisation
  • object to decisions being made that significantly affect you
  • object to how we are using your information
  • stop us using your information in certain ways.

Keeping your personal information secure

We have appropriate security measures in place to prevent personal information from being accidentally lost, used or accessed in an unauthorised way. We limit access to your personal information to those who have a genuine business need to know it. Those processing your information will do so only in an authorised manner and are subject to a duty of confidentiality.

We also have procedures in place to deal with any suspected data security breach. We will notify you and any applicable regulator of a suspected data security breach where we are legally required to do so.


Please contact the Information Resilience and Transparency Team at data.protection@kent.gov.uk to exercise any of your rights, or if you have a complaint about why your information has been collected, how it has been used or how long we have kept it for.

You can contact our Data Protection Officer, Benjamin Watts, at dpo@kent.gov.uk, or write to: Data Protection Officer, Sessions House, Maidstone, Kent ME14 1XQ.

GDPR also gives you right to lodge a complaint with a supervisory authority. The supervisory authority in the UK is the Information Commissioner who may be contacted on 03031 231113.

Read our corporate privacy statement.