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HAVE YOUR SAY: Dorset councils sell voters' details to private companies
4:48pm Monday 2nd September 2013 in News
DORSET'S local authorities have sold the details of tens of thousands of voters to private companies.
Councils across the country have received thousands of pounds after registers of voters' names and addresses were sold to direct marketing firms, pizza delivery shops and estate agents.
The figures were exposed in a report by privacy pressure group Big Brother Watch, which has since condemned the practice and called for it to be scrapped.
It is believed North Dorset District Council has sold the most details, with 26 purchasers listed, although the total figure the information was sold for has not been given.
The fee for the sale of the Register of Electors is prescribed in law and cannot be varied by individual councils.
There is a transaction fee of £20 plus £1.50 per thousand names.
Two versions of the register exists - a full register, which lists the names and addresses of everyone registered to vote, and an edited version, which excludes the names of people who have opted out of having their name passed on.
In September this year around 50 per cent of voters in West Dorset and 45 per cent in Weymouth and Portland opted out of their details being included in the edited version of the electoral role.
Anyone who wants to permanently opt out can email firstname.lastname@example.org giving their name and registered address.
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