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Data Sharing

Dated: 1 August 2023

POLICY TITLE:  Data Sharing

OWNING DIRECTORATE: Information Management 

CONTACT DETAILS: Data Protection and Disclosure Advisor, 101


AIM OF POLICY: To assist operational policing by creating a two-way process that enables links to be made between the Force and other organisations.

BENEFIT OF POLICY: Improved public services through an increased capability of all stakeholders to make informed decisions about how best to share information to protect the public as well as an increased openness and transparency amongst partners which in turn, builds confidence and trust in the police service.

REASON FOR POLICY: Ensures that all data sharing is done in a lawful manner.

Northumbria Police will:

  • Ensure that all information is processed having regard to the rights of the individual and the law;

  • Establish appropriate management and administrative practices to facilitate the sharing of police information with others and;

  • Ensure that all staff are supported in applying their responsibilities when sharing police information through an information sharing framework. In particular by supporting staff complying with relevant legislation and any national or local policies.


Northumbria Police will ensure that it complies with the following three categories of data sharing by establishing specific controls, procedures and working practices to manage them:

Statutory Obligation:

This is where the police service must share information as it is mandatory.  Examples include:

  • Part V Police Act 1997 (Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) previously Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) Checks)

  • Section 17A Crime and Disorder Act 1998 (requirement to share non-personal information for  the purposes of the Act including development of Crime and Disorder Reduction Strategies)

  • Freedom of Information Act 2000

  • Section 7 Data Protection Act 1998 (providing access to personal data by any individual who requests their own data)

Statutory Power:

This is where the police service may share information for certain purposes but there is no obligation to do so.  Examples include:

  • S115 Crime and Disorder Act 1998 (allows sharing of data with a relevant authority for crime and disorder reduction purposes)

  • Children Act 1989 (to ensure the protection of children within the Force area)

Common Law:

Where the police are requested (or wish to) share information in circumstances where no obvious statutory obligation or power exists, a lawful purpose for sharing must be established and thereafter consideration given as to whether a common law power exists. Examples include:

  • Third party public interest process (where information about an individual, often in relation to sexual offending, is disclosed to another individual to ensure they are able to appropriately protect themselves from harm)

  • Child Sex Offender Disclosure Scheme (CSODS)

SOURCE DOCUMENT: Human Rights, MoPI and Data Protection Act 1998




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