Companies House is responsible for the administration and maintenance of the public register, so any changes of information you submit can be quickly updated on the public register to show the correct details and aids in company transparency.
They hold two types of personal information that will either fall into the public category or will be non-public data that is not shared with anyone. Sensitive information submitted to Companies House is kept secure on a wide variety of databases and storage systems with tight security measures in place to protect the confidentiality and integrity of that information.
The Public Register
Companies House only stores registered company information on the public register that is open to view by the general public.
The information listed includes:
a company’s incorporation
director or secretary appointments
The Companies Act 2006 requires certain information to be included when registering a new company or updating the records of any changes. For a registered company director this will include:
date of birth
Under Section 34(c) of the Data Protection Act, this personal data is exempt if the data controller is duty bound to make it available to the public.
Why is my date of birth important?
Your date of birth is important as it allows Companies House to be as unique as possible with their stored information. Plus it makes it easier for those searching the Public Register at Companies House to establish the correct identity of the person they are looking for. A date of birth can help distinguish between two directors of the same name, especially when a search is performed.
It is not necessary for a company directors to submit their residential address, but they must provide a service address for the public record to enable the general public to locate and contact them. All usual residential addresses (URAs) are kept on a separate record away from public view to which access is tightly restricted.
All of the necessary statutory information gathered by Companies House about live companies is kept on record indefinitely. Only statutory information about dissolved companies will be published, and then for only a 20 year span once the company has been officially dissolved. Information will then be stored in the National Archives, but can still be accessed through the National Archives or via Companies House. The National Archives preserve a percentage of all dissolved company information which is determined based on their historical value.
What public data can people see?
Under the Companies Act 2006, and related legislation, Companies house can only ask for relevant information to display on the public record, no sensitive personal information will be disclosed for public view.
Companies House will still need to ask you for some personal data, but this will be defined as non-public data, and will not be displayed on the Public Register or can be accessed by the public. When they request this data from you they will clearly explain why this information is needed, and then will only collect the relevant information they need for their records. Personal information about you will only be kept on record for as long as is necessary.
If you would like more information and advice about data protection, privacy and data-sharing issues, visit the website of the Information Commissioner’s Office at http://www.ico.gov.uk.
What information of mine is available for the public to see?
Any information that is submitted to Companies house will be publicly available to anyone. This information will include the companies` details such as incorporation date, company accounts, annual returns, director`s details including appointments, secretary appointments, and shareholder information.
Why does Company house need personal information for company officers?
Under the Companies Act 2006 Companies House requires specific information to be included when someone is appointment as an officer of a company. A director of a company will be required to include their name, address, occupation, nationality and date of birth. This information is then available on the public register and it is legally required.
How long is my information stored on the register at companies` house?
Statutory information is kept permanently for the duration of the life of the company. If the company is dissolved companies` house will archive the information for 20 years (after the dissolution of the company). However it is important to understand that archived dissolved company information can currently be obtained on request either from Companies House or the National Archives who preserve a percentage of all dissolved company information which is determined based on their historical value.
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