Social Media Privacy Statement

Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage

Privacy Statement for Met Éireann’s Social Media Use

The Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage is the Government Department responsible for housing, planning, water services and environmental quality, local government, built and natural heritage and for weather forecasting services. Met Éireann, Ireland’s national weather service, is a division of the Department. Met Éireann has a number of social media accounts on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn. The Department is a data controller within the meaning of Article 4 of the General Data Protection Regulation. The Department and Met Éireann are committed to protecting and respecting your privacy and this statement explains how the Department, as the data controller, uses any personal data collected about you.

What type of personal data do we process and what do we do with it?

We may process your personal data for one of the following reasons:

  • You are giving us your personal data to allow us to respond to an enquiry. We need to process your personal data if you contact us through social media to know about a policy, access a service or tell us about something. We may also need to process your personal data if you wish us to redirect your enquiry to the relevant department.
  • We have filmed, photographed or audio recorded you at an event with your consent, and you have also consented to this material being published on social media and the department’s website.

We may process the following types of personal data:

  • Your name, address, email address, telephone number, social media handle and other contact information that allows us to deal with your enquiry. In this context, if your message includes personal data we advise you to contact us directly or privately (and preferably not through social media) rather than through public messaging. If your message includes contact information, for customer service purposes, this data will only be used to respond to your enquiry.
  • Comments by you on a public social media channel
  • Filming, photographic images or audio recordings of you on one of our social media

What is the legal basis for processing data?

The legal basis for the processing of your data is the following articles of the GDPR:
Article 6

  • Consent: You or a legal representative have given consent.
  • Legitimate interest: processing is necessary for the purposes of the legitimate interests pursued by the controller or by a third party.

If you provide us with your personal data in order that we can communicate directly with you on the Government’s policies and work then we have a legitimate interest in
responding to your messages through social media.

As a social media user you will have signed up to the terms and conditions of use of the social media platform provider. You can find more information about these platforms’ privacy and data policies on the respective platforms as follows:

X                      X Privacy Policy                   X Cookies Policy                    X GDPR Compliance

Facebook       Facebook Privacy Policy     Facebook Cookies Policy     Facebook GDPR Compliance

YouTube        YouTube Privacy Policy      YouTube Cookies Policy      YouTube GDPR Compliance

Instagram     Instagram Privacy Policy    Instagram Cookies Policy    Instagram GDPR Compliance

We will only publish content on our social media channels that includes your personal data (by way of image, words and/or voice) once we have obtained your written permission to process such personal data.

How do we protect children’s privacy?

We understand the importance of protecting children’s privacy online. We will not process data (photos, videos of children at events for example) that relates to children under the age of 16 years unless we have the explicit consent of the appropriate adult.

Will your personal data be shared?

Your personal data will not be shared with any third parties unless we are required to do so by law.

How we keep your personal data secure?

The security of your personal data is important to us. This is why we follow a range of security policies and procedures to control and safeguard access to and use of your personal data. We also train our staff to make them aware of how to handle information and how and when to report when something goes wrong.

How long do we keep your data?

We only keep your personal data for the minimum period amount of time necessary. Sometimes this time period is set out in law, but in most cases it is based on business need.

For communicating Government policies, programmes and public information the maximum time period we retain personal data for is five years, save for exceptional circumstances. This time period allows us to retain data to generate any additional social media content on a Government policy, programme or public information message for which that data remains relevant to a public or specific audience. Data management protocols will be put in place to enforce this data retention. These will aim to ensure that those overseeing departmental social media channels routinely review data and destroy any data that should no longer be retained.

What are your information rights?

Your rights are set out in law. Subject to some legal exceptions, you have the right to:

  1. access your data – you have the right to request a copy of the personal data that we hold about you.
  2. correction of your data – we want to make sure that your personal data is accurate, complete and up-to-date. Therefore, you may ask us to correct any personal data about you that you believe does not meet these standards.
  3. deletion of your data – you have the right to ask us to delete personal data about you where:
    1. you think that we no longer need to hold the data for the purposes for which it was originally obtained
    2. you have a genuine objection to our use of your personal data
    3. our use of your personal data is contrary to law or our other legal obligations
  4. place a restriction on our processing of your data – in some cases, you may ask us to restrict how we use your personal data. This right might apply, for example, where we are checking the accuracy of personal data that we hold about you or if we are assessing the objection you have made to our use of your data. This right might also apply if we no longer have a basis for using your personal data but you don’t want us to delete the data. Where this right is realistically applied will mean that we may only use the relevant personal data with your consent, for legal claims or where there are other public interest grounds to do so.
  5. object to processing
  6. request your data to be ported (data portability)

Withdrawing consent to use your data

Where we use your personal data with your consent you may withdraw that consent at any time and we will stop using your personal data for the purpose(s) for which consent was given.

Please contact us if you wish to exercise any of these rights (see below).

How can you contact us?

Exercising your rights or making a complaint

If you consider that your rights have been infringed, you have the right to complain to the Irish Data Protection Commission ( You have the right to seek a judicial remedy.

The Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage’s Data Protection Officer can be contacted at:

Data Protection Officer,
Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage
Newtown Road,