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General Chat Thread, FOI Request about my printers.... in General; ...
  1. #1

    Little-Miss's Avatar
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    FOI Request about my printers....

    From another print supplier. Is that even a thing?


    Dear Sirs,

    I would like to submit a Freedom of Information Request relating to specific Print Contract(s) for:
    *Print Devices / Photocopiers / Lease Details / Support / Maintenance Contract)s) – Please can you send me the contract(s) separately and not a combined total value or number of suppliers. If there is more than one supplier for a particular contract please state which of these suppliers the main one is.
    For each of the types of Print Contracts can you please send me the following data types:

    Contract Title:
    1. Existing / Current supplier:
    2. Hardware Brand(s):
    3. Number of Machines:
    4. Total Contract Value: (for the duration of the whole contract, if the total value given is per annum please state this in the response)
    5. Duration: (Please can you also include notes if the contract includes any extension periods)
    6. Contract Expiry Date:
    7. Contract Review Date: (An approximate date of when the organisation is planning to review this particular contract)
    8. Internal Contact: (the person from within the organisation that is responsible for reviewing and renewing this particular contract. Please include their full name, job title, direct contact number and direct email address)

    If you do not have any contracts and are therefore owned outright then I would be greatful if you could please supply the following information:-

    1. Hardware Brand(s):
    2. Number of Machines:
    3. Approximate Purchase Date:
    4. Approximate Annual Spend on Consumables:
    5. Internal Contact: : (the person from within the organisation that is responsible for sourcing the machines. Please include their full name, job title, direct contact number and direct email address)

    I look forward to receiving your response in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

    Kind regards
    Pfft....most companies just ring and ask....

    Don't get me started on the 'Dear Sirs'..

  2. 2 Thanks to Little-Miss:

    ButterflyMoon (14th February 2014), VeryPC_Colin_M (19th February 2014)

  3. #2
    HaleStorm's Avatar
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    I'm sure most of the requested information, especially about Contract information, surely that is Private and Confidential.

    Also you can charge £10 for FOI requests...send them back an invoice.

  4. #3

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    Speak to your FOI officer before you answer. All big organisations have them. They will know whats a reasonable enquiry.

  5. #4

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    Speak to your FOI person at the LA.

  6. #5

    LosOjos's Avatar
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    You certainly don't have to give any personal details (i.e. contact names and telephone numbers etc.), FOI does not overrule DPA.

    When can we refuse a request for information? | ICO

  7. #6

    Steve21's Avatar
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    Can't you just decline the request due to costs? It's not environmental or data protection based, so the amount of man hours it'll take you to fulfill a whole site check will be over the limit (£450 or whatever it is) *cough*

    In reality you can do an FOI for anything at all though,

    However you can tell them where to go by using the commerical exceptions!

    http://www.justice.gov.uk/downloads/...exemptions.pdf

    Random examples:

    Code:
    Examples of information the disclosure of which may have a particular potential to damage commercial interests include:
    
    research and plans relating to a potential new product
    
    product manufacturing cost information
    
    product sales forecast information
    
    strategic business plans, including for example, plans to enter, develop or withdraw from a product or geographical market sector
    
    marketing plans, to promote a new or existing product
    
    information relating to the preparation of a competitive bid
    
    information about the financial and business viability of a company
    
    information provided to a public authority in respect of an application for a licence or as a requirement of a licence condition or under a regulatory regime
    Steve

  8. #7

    sparkeh's Avatar
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    Hmm I would probably quote the exemption for commercial interests (43.2)

    From Freedom of Information Act 2000
    43 Commercial interests.

    (1) Information is exempt information if it constitutes a trade secret.
    (2) Information is exempt information if its disclosure under this Act would, or would be likely to, prejudice the commercial interests of any person (including the public authority holding it).
    (3) The duty to confirm or deny does not arise if, or to the extent that, compliance with section 1(1)(a) would, or would be likely to, prejudice the interests mentioned in subsection (2).
    I would imagine that giving over the contract details would be covered by this.
    Last edited by sparkeh; 14th February 2014 at 02:01 PM.

  9. #8

    X-13's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve21 View Post
    Can't you just decline the request due to costs? It's not environmental or data protection based, so the amount of man hours it'll take you to fulfill a whole site check will be over the limit (£450 or whatever it is) *cough*

    In reality you can do an FOI for anything at all though,

    However you can tell them where to go by using the commerical exceptions!

    http://www.justice.gov.uk/downloads/...exemptions.pdf

    Random examples:

    Code:
    Examples of information the disclosure of which may have a particular potential to damage commercial interests include:
    
    research and plans relating to a potential new product
    
    product manufacturing cost information
    
    product sales forecast information
    
    strategic business plans, including for example, plans to enter, develop or withdraw from a product or geographical market sector
    
    marketing plans, to promote a new or existing product
    
    information relating to the preparation of a competitive bid
    
    information about the financial and business viability of a company
    
    information provided to a public authority in respect of an application for a licence or as a requirement of a licence condition or under a regulatory regime
    Steve
    I was thinking along those lines, too.

    It sounds like they're after information that would help them win contracts, which isn't what this law is about.

  10. #9

    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    Your school is spending public money and must comply with FoI requests unless they are requesting personal data (such as named staff salaries)

    You cannot question who is asking for the data or deny the information. You have 30 working days to comply... which means you don't count school holidays or weekends and bank holidays! You can charge a reasonable fee for providing the information, but that's for things like photocopying and not wages. You can also tell the requestor where to find it on the school website if the information requested is already easily available... you don't have to provide it again.

    This feels like a fishing trip by a business which is not what FoI is for and, personally, I'd call them and tell them that.

    Your Data Controller is responsible for compliance and should know what to and who to consult; I am aware that in most schools this is probably a pipe dream. However, your LA should have someone in the know.

    The bottom line is that you must respond.

  11. #10

    Little-Miss's Avatar
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    Yeah, market research using scary words....

    Makes me wonder how many people would reply straight away.

    I understand it's public money etc and don't argue that. I'm not particulary impressed and will be finding someone to contact first.
    Last edited by Little-Miss; 14th February 2014 at 02:07 PM.

  12. #11

    sparkeh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by elsiegee40 View Post
    You cannot question who is asking for the data or deny the information.
    Um, you can deny the information if it falls into any of the (many) exemptions: Freedom of Information Act 2000

  13. #12

    nephilim's Avatar
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    I asked a lawyer here what you can legally answer for these, to wind them up a bit. Here is what you can answer for all.

    Contract Title:
    DPA prevents me from disclosing this

    1. Existing / Current supplier:
    DPA prevents me from disclosing this

    2. Hardware Brand(s):
    DPA prevents me from disclosing this

    3. Number of Machines:
    DPA prevents me from disclosing this

    4. Total Contract Value: (for the duration of the whole contract, if the total value given is per annum please state this in the response)
    DPA prevents me from disclosing this

    5. Duration: (Please can you also include notes if the contract includes any extension periods)
    DPA prevents me from disclosing this

    6. Contract Expiry Date:
    DPA prevents me from disclosing this

    7. Contract Review Date: (An approximate date of when the organisation is planning to review this particular contract)
    DPA prevents me from disclosing this
    8. Internal Contact: (the person from within the organisation that is responsible for reviewing and renewing this particular contract. Please include their full name, job title, direct contact number and direct email address)
    DPA prevents me from disclosing this

    If you do not have any contracts and are therefore owned outright then I would be greatful if you could please supply the following information:-

    1. Hardware Brand(s):
    *insert brands here*

    2. Number of Machines:
    *insert number here*

    3. Approximate Purchase Date:
    *insert date here*

    4. Approximate Annual Spend on Consumables:
    *insert value here*

    5. Internal Contact: : (the person from within the organisation that is responsible for sourcing the machines. Please include their full name, job title, direct contact number and direct email address)
    DPA prevents me from disclosing this

  14. #13

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    I think as others have already said, this section will allow you to tell them to Foxtrox Oscar:

    Section 43(2) - Commercial interests
    Information is exempt it is disclosure would prejudice, or would be likely to prejudice, the commercial interests of your organisation or anyone else.

    Speak to your FOI person, then tell them to go and do one.

  15. #14

    nephilim's Avatar
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    DPA prevents the use of the contracts (and its specifics therein), named companies, named persons, and other identifiable information with these requests.

  16. #15

    Steve21's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by elsiegee40 View Post
    The bottom line is that you must respond.
    You must respond, but it doesn't say you have to give the information.

    An organisation can turn down other types of request if they think it will cost them more than £450 (£600 for a central government organisation) to deal with.
    which goes back to depending how much of that information is stored/easily accessible it could rack up the man hours.

    And if it's breaking those exceptions/exemptions you can still say no? Unless I'm missing something, responding can still be without the information no?

    Steve



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