DfT Privacy Notice


Who the survey is for

The Department for Transport (DfT) and the wider rail industry including Transport Focus, Rail Delivery Group, Network Rail, and the Great British Railways Transition Team are undertaking research to understand passengers’ experience of rail journeys. Your participation in this study is entirely voluntary and the survey will be carried out according to the Market Research Society (MRS) Code of Conduct.

How the information will be used

The information will be used by the Department for Transport and other organisations in rail to evaluate potential methodologies that may be used for an ongoing survey to monitor rail performance and inform improvements in rail services.

This survey and the processing of personal data that it entails is necessary for the exercise of our functions as a government department. For any information that allows you to be identified, DfT will, under data protection law, be the Controller for this information. BVA BDRC (an independent research agency) has been contracted to collect responses to this survey; they are the Processor for this information. For purposes of analysis, only anonymised data will be shared with Transport Focus, Rail Delivery Group, Network Rail and Great British Railways Transition Team. We will not transfer personal data of citizens of the UK and EU outside of the UK and EU unless this has been notified to you.

As part of this survey, we will ask about your age, gender, working status, postcode, industry of work, ethnicity, transport usage, origin and destination station, and about any disabilities you may have. You don’t have to provide this information if you don’t want to. If you are willing to be contacted for further research, we will also ask for your contact details.

Personal data that is collected from you may, subject to adequate confidentiality undertakings, and for the sole purpose of providing the contracted services, be accessed by BVA BDRC personnel and to or by third party companies and subcontractors that help provide the services. In any such case, the personnel granted access to your personal data will have been deemed by their managers to have a reasonable business need to do so.

Our lawful basis

The lawful basis for processing your data is Article 6(1)(e) of the UK GDPR – 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.

Where special category personal data is being processed, a further section of the UK GDPR applies, Article 9(2)(g) – substantial public interest.

Managing your data

DfT’s privacy policy has more information about your rights in relation to your personal data,how to complain and how to contact the Data Protection Officer. You can view it at https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-transport/about/personal-information-charter.

Your information will be kept securely by BVA BDRC and then transferred to DfT at the end of the fieldwork period. DfT will only receive pseudonymised data (data that cannot be used to identify any individual without additional information, which is stored separately by BVA BDRC). BVA BDRC will only retain personal identifiable information for six months from the point of collection. Anonymised survey data will be kept by DfT for as long as is necessary to support the research project and findings. Project research records required for traceability will be retained for 24 months and then deleted.