Water and wastewater services for Kent, Sussex, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight
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Need help?

Type your question into the box below or see what other customers often ask.

How to find out more

You can contact the CRA below with whom we share your data, to ask to see the information they hold about you; they will charge you a small statutory fee.

Consumer Help Service
PO Box 8000
Nottingham, NG80 7WF

Alternatively call 0844 481 8000 or via their website.


Southern Water welcomes your questions and comments regarding our policy on processing personal information.

If you have any queries, please write to the:

Data Protection Officer
Southern Water Services Ltd
Southern House
Yeoman Road
West Sussex, BN13 3NX.

Or email us at dataprotection@southernwater.co.uk, alternatively you can contact our call centre on 0330 303 0277 (calls charged at local rate).

Click on the questions below to reveal the answers:

  1. Will my personal data be used for direct marketing? 
    • We may contact you with products or services relating to the nature of our business that we feel may be of interest to you, however you can inform us at any time if you no longer wish to receive these communications.
  2. What is a Credit Reference Agency (CRA)? 
    • Credit reference agencies collect and maintain information on consumers’ and businesses’ credit behaviour, on behalf of organisations in the UK.
  3. What is a Fraud Prevention Agency (FPA)? 
    • Fraud Prevention Agencies collect, maintain and share information on known and suspected fraudulent activity. Some CRAs also act as FPAs.
  4. Why do you use CRAs and FPAs when I have registered with your organisation? 
    • Although you already have or have just become liable for services with us and we will check our own records, we will also contact a CRA to get information on your credit behaviour with other organisations. This will help us make the best possible assessment of your overall situation before we make a decision on how to manage your account with us.
  5. Where do CRAs get their information? 
    • Publicly available information:
      • The Electoral Register from Local Authorities.
      • County Court Judgments from Registry Trust.
      • Bankruptcy (and other similar orders) from the Insolvency Service.
      • Fraud information may also come from fraud prevention agencies.
      • Credit information comes from information on applications to banks, building societies, credit card companies etc and also from the conduct of those accounts.
  6. How will I know if my information is to be sent to a CRA or FPA? 
    • Information on all new and existing accounts will be shared with a CRA and FPA and we will ensure that all customers are advised that their information will be shared and are periodically reminded.
  7. Why is my data used in this way? 
    • We and other organisations want to make the best possible decisions we can, in order to make sure that you, or your business, will be able to repay us. Some organisations may also use the information to check your identity.

      In this way we can ensure that we all make responsible decisions. At the same time we also want to make decisions quickly and easily and, by using up to date information, provided electronically, we are able to make the most reliable and fair decisions possible.
  8. Who controls what CRAs and FPAs are allowed to do with my data? 
    • All organisations that collect and process personal data are regulated by the Data Protection Act 1998, overseen by the Information Commissioner’s Office. All credit reference agencies are in regular dialogue with the Commissioner. Use of the Electoral Register is controlled under the Representation of the People Act 2000.
  9. Can just anyone look at my data held at credit reference agencies? 
    • No, access to your information is very strictly controlled and only those that are entitled to do so may see it.
  10. Do I have a choice about my information being shared with credit reference agencies or fraud prevention agencies? 
    • We are notifying you of our intention to share data about you which we are doing because, under the first principle of the Data Protection Act, the data controller (us) can share data if they believe it to be within the legitimate interests of that organisation.

      We consider that in order to better manage our services, data on all customers of our organisation should be shared in this way in order to make more effective decisions about our customers and for the prevention and detection of fraud. We have discussed this with our regulators.
  11. Will the data sharing benefit me in any way? 
    • The sharing of information about the regular payment of water bills will contribute positively towards building a credit history, particularly for customers who are not financially active in other credit services. This may extend the options available to those customers for accessing mainstream credit and financial services and products.
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