Key terminology

Biometric data: means personal data resulting from specific technical processing relating to the physical, physiological or behavioural characteristics of a natural person, which allow or confirm the unique identification of that natural person, such as facial images or dactyloscopic data. 

Consent: means any freely given, specific, informed and unambiguous indication of the data subject's wishes by which he or she, by a statement or by a clear affirmative action, signifies agreement to the processing of personal data relating to him or her. 

Data concerning health: means personal data related to the physical or mental health of a natural person, including the provision of health care services, which reveal information about his or her health status.

Data controller: means the natural or legal person, public authority, agency or other body which, alone or jointly with others, determines the purposes and means of the processing of personal data; where the purposes and means of such processing are determined by the Union or Member State law, the controller or the specific criteria for its nomination may be provided for by Union or Member State law. 

Data Protection Act 2018: a complete data protection framework that addresses derogations from the GDPR (e.g. UK specific rules around data protection compliant research) as well general data, law enforcement data and national security data rules. The Act replaces the Data Protection Act 1998 and sits alongside the GDPR. 

Data processor: means a natural or legal person, public authority, agency or other body which processes personal data on behalf of the controller. 

Data subject: a natural person whose personal data is processed by a data controller or processor.  

Filing system: means any structured set of personal data which are accessible according to specific criteria, whether centralised, decentralised or dispersed on a functional or geographic basis. 

Genetic data: means personal data relating to the inherited or acquired genetic characteristics of a natural person which give unique information about the physiology or the health of that natural person and which result, in particular, from an analysis of a biological sample from the natural person in question. 

Personal data: any information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person ('data subject'); an identifiable natural person is one who can be identified directly or indirectly, in particular by reference to an identifier such as a name, an identification number, location data, an online identifier or to one or more factors specific to the physical, physiological, genetic, mental, economic, cultural or social identity of that natural person. 

Personal data breach: means a breach of security leading to the accidental or unlawful destruction, loss, alteration, unauthorised disclosure of, or access to, personal data transmitted, stored or otherwise processed. 

Processing: means any operation or set of operations which is performed on personal data or on sets of personal data, whether or not by automated means, such as collection, recording, organisation, structuring, storage, adaptation or alteration, retrieval, consultation, use, disclosure by transmission, dissemination or otherwise making available, alignment or combination, restriction, erasure or destruction. 

Profiling: means any form of automated processing of personal data consisting of the use of personal data to evaluate certain personal aspects relating to a natural person, in particular to analyse or predict aspects concerning that natural person's performance at work, economic situation, health, personal preferences, interests, reliability, behaviour, location or movements. 

Privacy by design: an approach to project management that considers privacy issues at the initial design stage as well as throughout project delivery. 

Privacy impact assessment: a process designed to help organisations identify and mitigate privacy risks associated with proposed data processing activities. For further information, see the University's Privacy Impact Assessment guidance. 

Pseudonymisation: means the processing of personal data in such a manner that the personal data can no longer be attributed to a specific data subject without the use of additional information, provided that such additional information is kept separately and is subject to technical and organisational measures to ensure that the personal data are not attributed to an identified or identifiable natural person. 

Restriction on processing: means the marking of stored personal data with the aim of limiting their processing in the future. 

Right of access: i.e. a right for data subjects to obtain from the controller confirmation as to whether or not personal data is being processed and, where it is being processed, a right to be given access to that data and answers to various questions outlined in Article 15 of the Regulation. For further information, see the University's guidance available here. 

Special categories of personal data: i.e. personal data revealing racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs or trade union membership or the processing of genetic data, biometric data for the purposes of uniquely identifying a natural person, data concerning health or data concerning a natural person's sex life or sexual orientation.