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FOI requests from 77m

FOI14619 – Request for information

Request

Thank you for your email of 28 December 2015 (expressed as being on behalf of 77m Ltd), requesting the following information in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA)

“All correspondence relating to discussions concerning FOI requests (but not the actual FOI information) from 77m Limited, since September 2015.

This should include but not be limited to emails, notes of meetings and recorded telephone conversations.

An example of this would be internal emails sent as a result of the requests which include comments concerning the FOI request.”

Our response

Firstly, although there have been a number of FOI requests relating to 77m Ltd in the relevant period, we note that this FOI request only relates to FOI requests which OS has received from 77m Ltd since September 2015 up to the date of this request. The only FOI request that OS has received from 77m Ltd in the specified period is FOI14608, to which OS responded by email on 15 December 2015. As such, we have only looked at information concerning that particular FOI request.

We can confirm that we hold this information. Whilst we are able to release the information described below (which is available on request), note that some of the information has been redacted as it falls under a number of exemptions within the FOIA; the relevant sections and reasons are detailed below. Further, some of the information requested is not being released at all, as again, it is exempted by the FOIA; this is also detailed below.

Information released

  • Internal OS email chain ending with email of 1/12/15 at 11:48 – note that the attachments to this email are not released, as they were within the scope of FOI14608 itself, and therefore outside the scope of this request.
  • Internal OS email chain ending with OS FOI’s email of 8/12/15 at 10:02.
  • Email chain ending with email of 09/12/15 at 16:56 - note that some of the information has been redacted on the basis of section 43(2), as its disclosure would be likely to prejudice the commercial interests of the licensed partner. In addition, the information is exempt from disclosure under section 41(1) (as disclosure would constitute an actionable breach of confidence by the licensed partner). Note also that some of the email chain has not been included, as it was within the scope of FOI14608 itself, and therefore outside the scope of this request.
  • Email chain from Digimap (Jersey) Ltd to OS of 10/12/15 at 14:46.
  • Email chain ending with email of 11/12/15 at 16:35 - note that some of the information has been redacted on the basis of section 43(2), as its disclosure would be likely to prejudice the commercial interests of the licensed partner. In addition, the information is exempt from disclosure under section 41(1) (as disclosure would constitute an actionable breach of confidence by the licensed partner). Note also that some of the email chain has not been included, as it was within the scope of FOI14608 itself, and is therefore outside the scope of this request.
  • Email chain ending with email from Land Registry to OS of 14/12/15 at 14:50.
  • Internal OS email chain ending with email of 15/12/15 at 10:23.
  • Email chain ending with email of 15/12/15 at 11:42 - note that some of the information has been redacted on the basis of section 43(2), as its disclosure would be likely to prejudice the commercial interests of the licensed partner. In addition, the information is exempt from disclosure under section 41(1) (as disclosure would constitute an actionable breach of confidence by the licensed partner). Note that the information attached to this email has not been released, as it was within the scope of FOI14608 itself, and is therefore outside the scope of this request.
  • Internal OS email of 15/12/15 at 12:20
  • Internal OS email of 15/12/15 at 12:38
  • Internal OS email of 15/12/15 at 13:01
  • Internal OS email of 15/12/15 at 15:00 with attachment.
  • Internal OS email chain ending with email of 15/12/15 at 16:07.
  • Record of qualified person’s opinion – elements have been redacted on the basis of section 36(2)(b) and (c) of the FOIA, i.e. that disclosure of the information would be likely to inhibit the free and frank provision of advice, or the free and frank exchange of views for the purposes of deliberation, or would be likely to prejudice the effective conduct of public affairs.
  • Internal OS email of 16/12/15 at 09:44.
  • Internal OS email chain ending with email of 16/12/15 at 09:45.
  • Internal OS email chain ending with email of 17/12/15 at 16:02.
  • Email chain ending with email from OS FOI of 22/12/15 at 14:40.

Note that in all of the emails released pursuant to this FOI request, we have redacted the names of specific individuals and their contact details, where we consider this information to be exempt under section 40(2) ‘Personal Information’. This includes some third party personal information. In the Record of qualified person’s opinion, we have redacted the signature of the qualified person, again on the basis of section 40(2).

Section 40(2)(a) and (b), together with the condition under section 40(3)(a)(i) and (b) of the FOIA, provides an absolute exemption, where the disclosure of information would contravene any of the data protection principles under the Data Protection Act (DPA) 1998. In this case, we have exempted information constituting the personal data of living individuals, the release of which would be in breach of the Data Protection Principles.

In applying this exemption, we have considered whether disclosure of the personal data in question would be 'fair' (as described in Schedule 1 of the Data Protection Act). We have given particular consideration to the likely expectations of the data subjects regarding the disclosure of their personal information, whether they are already publicly referenced through their position and if they would expect to be publicly referenced in this manner, in reaching our decision to withhold this information.

Information not released

  • Email chain between OS and the Shareholder Executive – this information is exempt from disclosure under section 36(2)(b) and (c) of the FOIA, i.e. that disclosure of the information would be likely to inhibit the free and frank provision of advice, or the free and frank exchange of views for the purposes of deliberation, or would be likely to prejudice the effective conduct of public affairs.
  • Email chain between OS and The National Archives – this information is exempt from disclosure under section 36(2)(b) and (c) of the FOIA, for the same reasons as set out above.
  • Email between two members of OS’s legal team – this information is exempt from disclosure under section 42 of the FOIA, as we consider that such information would attract legal professional privilege in any legal proceedings.

Public interest test

Sections 36(2), 42 and 43(2) are qualified exemptions and we are required to consider the public interest.

In relation to section 42, the public interest in transparency has to be balanced against the principle behind legal profession privilege which is to safeguard communications between client and lawyer to ensure access to full and frank legal advice, which is fundamental to the administration of justice.

In relation to section 43(2), the requirement for transparency has to be balanced against the commercial interests of the third parties concerned.

Lastly, in relation to section 36, the public interest in transparency needs to be balanced against the public interest in the effective conduct of public affairs.

Having considered the above, we are satisfied that the public interest is best served by withholding the information under these exemptions.

Internal review

Your enquiry has been processed according to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) 2000. If you are unhappy with our response, you may request an internal review with our FOI Internal Review Officer, by contacting them as follows:

FOI Internal Review Officer
Customer Service Centre
Ordnance Survey
Adanac Drive
Southampton
SO16 0AS

Email: foi@os.uk

Please include the reference number above. You may request an internal review where you believe Ordnance Survey has:

  • Failed to respond to your request within the time limits (normally 20 working days)
  • Failed to tell you whether or not we hold the information
  • Failed to provide the information you have requested
  • Failed to explain the reasons for refusing a request
  • Failed to correctly apply an exemption or exception

The FOI Internal Review Officer will not have been involved in the original decision. They will conduct an independent internal review and will inform you of the outcome of the review normally within 20 working days, but exceptionally within 40 working days, in line with the Information Commissioner’s guidance.

The FOI Internal Review Officer will either: uphold the original decision, provide an additional explanation of the exemption/s applied or release further information, if it is considered appropriate to do so.

Appeal to Information Commissioner's Office (ICO)
If, following the outcome of the internal review you remain unhappy with our response, you may raise an appeal with the Information Commissioner’s Office at:

The Case Reception Unit
Customer Service Team
The Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF

Email: mail@ico.gsi.gov.uk

Telephone helpline: 0303 123 1113 or 01625 545745 for advice, Monday to Friday.

Thank you for your enquiry.

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