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Data Protection Notice


The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into effect on 25 May 2018. The GDPR is legislation which the European Union has enacted and it increases the obligations on all organisations as to the standards they must meet when handling and storing personal data.

The Irish state certificate examinations are delivered by the State Examinations Commission. The SEC is an independent body, established under the powers granted to the Minister for Education and Skills by Section 54 of the Education Act, 1998 and created by the State Examinations Commission (Establishment) Order 2003 (S.I 373/2003). Pursuant to Article 6 of SI 373/2003 the State Examinations Commission has responsibility for the delivery of the state certificate examinations. The statutory functions of the SEC, set out in article 6(1) of SI 373/2003, are to:

  1. Organise the holding of examinations
  2. Ensure the preparation of examination papers and other examination materials
  3. Determine procedures in places where examinations are conducted including the supervision of examinations
  4. Make arrangements for the marking of work presented for examinations
  5. Issue the results of examinations
  6. Determine procedures for the review and appeal of results of examinations at the request of candidates
  7. Charge and collect fees for examinations and apply such monies to the carrying out of its functions
  8. Designate places where examinations may be held.
Accountability - Data Subjects' Rights

The GDPR provides the following rights for individuals:

  1. The right to be informed
  2. The right of access
  3. The right to rectification
  4. The right to erasure/right to be forgotten
  5. The right to restrict processing
  6. The right to data portability
  7. The right to object
  8. Rights in relation to automated decision making and profiling

The Data Protection Commissioner has prepared a Guide to the Rights of Individuals under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

What Personal Data do we collect?
  1. The SEC collects, processes and stores personal data belonging to candidates for the purposes of organising the holding of the State Examinations; marking candidates’ work; generating and issuing the results of examinations and appeals; and charging and collecting fees for examinations, and applying such monies to the carrying out of its functions.
    Legal Basis:- State Examinations Commission – SI 373/2003
  2. The SEC collects, processes and stores personal data belonging to Contract Staff for appointment of staff to discharge the statutory functions of the SEC, set out in article 6(1) of SI 373/2003 and to arrange the appropriate payment to contract staff.
    Legal Basis:- State Examinations Commission – SI 373/2003; Payment of Wages Act 1991
  3. The SEC processes special category personal data in the context of making provision for access to the state examinations by students with disabilities or special educational needs, a statutorily mandated function of the Minister under Section 7 of the Education Act 1998.
  4. The SEC also collects and processes employees’ personal data. This is covered in our HR Data Protection Notice.

Under current data protection legislation, organisations are required to maintain a record of the personal data that we process. This is known as a “Record of Processing Activity” (ROPA). Click here for ROPA (Record of Processing Activities)


The SEC takes appropriate measures in order to protect the confidentiality, integrity and availability of its information processing systems and services.

Your Rights

You have the right to lodge a complaint with the Data Protection Commissioner, please see

Data Breaches

Where applicable the SEC will notify the Data Protection Commissioner (DPC) within 72 hours of Data breaches that are advised to the SEC.

Data Subjects' Rights - How to Apply

Under Article 15 of the General Data Protection Regulation, you have a right to obtain a copy of any personal information relating to you. To access a copy of personal data held by the State Examinations Commission in relation to you, please complete the relevant Subject Access Request (SAR) application form:-

SAR-SEC Candidate Form
SAR-SEC Contract Staff Form

Contact Details

The SEC’s Data Protection Officer may be contacted by sending an e-mail to or by post to the Data Protection Officer, State Examinations Commissions, Athlone, Co. Westmeath, N37 TP65

Changes to Our Privacy Statement

This Notice may be updated from time to time as required.

State Examinations Commission, Cornamaddy, Athlone, Co. Westmeath, N37 TP65. Tel: 090-644 2700 Fax: 090-644 2744 Email us: Click here link to the Contact Form
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