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Date of Birth Confidentiality

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Have you ever wondered why when registering a vehicle, the DVLA requests (and without comment or explanation) that you have to provide your date of birth. I queried this, stating that since the details pertaining to the car had no relevance to the age of the registered keeper, why were these being requested.


The DVLA response was simply that it was for 'completeness' and anyway, the keepers DoB was simply a request, the keeper was not bound by law to provide it. Now, The following report may be of interest - it is an adjudication under the Freedom of Information Act.


Public Authority: Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency

Summary: The complainant made a request for the date of birth information of a number of registered keepers, whose names and address details had previously been provided to him following a vehicle enquiry request to the DVLA. The DVLA initially considered the requested information to be exempt under section 40. However, during the course of the Commissioner’s investigation the public authority indicated that to retrieve the information requested would exceed the costs limit under section 12 of the Act because the DVLA would need to instruct its IT contractors to carry out specific searches through its driver database .The Commissioner decided that although it may have been possible to retrieve some information within the costs limit this information would be exempt under section 40 of the Act on the basis that disclosure would breach the first data protection principle. He also decided that the DVLA has not breached section 16 of the Act. However the Commissioner has concluded that it did fail to comply with its duty under section 17(1) and section 17(7) of the Act as it failed to state in its refusal notice why the exemption applied or that it had a procedure for dealing with complaints about the handling of requests for information or the right to appeal to the Commissioner.


The full report is here: http://www.ico.gov.uk/upload/documents/decisionnotices/2007/decision_notice_fs50092955.pdf


What is interesting is this, is that some unnamed third party is complaining that the DVLA is not providing ful DoB information, and it appears from their response, the software is not set up to provide this data routinely. But it is interesting how someone requesting your information as a Registered Keeper, is getting hot and bothered about DVLA not providing a DoB, so this should be watched.


Of course, this has nothing to do with the Licencing (Driver) side of the business, where the DoB is required to calculate driving entitlements, and there is a legitimate need to provide this information - however, for the purposes of vehicle registration, is is decidedly not on. Since O V E R 2 1 fits in the box requesting your DoB, I suggest this response is as good as any.

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. Since O V E R 2 1 fits in the box requesting your DoB, I suggest this response is as good as any.


I have rarely ever filled in any official form where I comply with the restrictions of characters/boxes.


I also refuse to use black pen if I already have another colour to hand and refuse to write in block capitals - if they want block capitals, they should ask you to print.


Petty - yes

Mindless - yes

My little rebellion - ooh, yes

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