ACCA - The global body for professional accountants

1. Introduction

This data protection notice provides information on how the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants and its affiliated entities (together 'ACCA', 'us' or 'we') use personal data relating to their customers (also referred to in this notice as 'you'), including:

  • ACCA members, affiliates, registered students and potential students
  • subscribers to ACCA magazines
  • individual contacts from employers of students and members, and
  • registrants for continuing professional development training courses.

A list of ACCA affiliated entities relevant to this notice and their activities is set out in the appendix to this notice.

2. What personal data will ACCA collect and why?

2.1 Administration of membership records

ACCA will hold personal data relating to members, affiliates and registered students in order to administer membership or student membership with ACCA and comply with its regulatory obligations. Details may include name, contact details, membership ID numbers, nationality, date of birth, dates of affiliation, membership or fellowship, and details of payments, queries and complaints.

It is also voluntary for members, affiliates and registered students to provide ACCA with details of ethnic origin, in order for ACCA to review equality or opportunity of treatment.

2.2 ACCA Connect

Your communications with ACCA, including online, by email, text message (SMS), via ACCA's customer call centre (or otherwise) may be recorded and retained for training and record-keeping purposes. Records may be used to monitor the quality of the assistance given and to verify the matters discussed.

2.3 Communications (including marketing)

ACCA may use your contact details to send you registration or information packs, recruitment materials, surveys, questionnaires, invitations regarding ACCA-based consultations, details of ACCA courses and events or to notify you of any updates and changes to ACCA's products and services.

ACCA may also carry out mailings on behalf of third parties (without disclosing your details to such third parties), subject to obtaining your consent. Consent may be requested on your ACCA registration form or separately by ACCA.

Please let us know if you do not wish to receive (or wish to change the way in which you receive) any of the above materials (see How to access or update your details below).

2.4 Training and employment

Training and examinations: Details of your training, attendance, learning providers, examination and course results will be used to administer courses and exams and to monitor the pass rates and performance of learning providers as well as ACCA students. Please note that some examinations may be taken electronically.

ACCA Exchange: This is a service offered to employers and learning providers. It enables them to upload details of the ACCA students whom they employ and/or are training, and monitor examination status and results. ACCA requires such employers and learning providers to obtain your consent before including your details on this service.

2.5 ACCA Learning Community

Personal data is used to validate your registration with ACCA.

Continuing professional development (CPD) courses: ACCA offers CPD training courses for both members and non-members and will need to hold contact details and attendance records in order to administer such courses.

2.6 Professional Conduct

ACCA holds records of enquiries, investigations and complaints relating to members and registered students (or prospective and former students). Such matters may be sensitive in nature and ACCA restricts internal access to information to those teams responsible for investigating and resolving the relevant matters. However, please be aware that disciplinary hearings and outcomes may be made public.

2.7 Publications

We will use your name, mailing and/or email address and payment details in order to manage subscriptions to ACCA's publications, including Student Accountant, Finance Matters, Teach Accounting, Accounting link and Accounting & Business magazines. Please contact ACCA if you wish to change the format in which you receive such publications, e.g. electronically or in hard copy (see How to access or update your details below).

2.8 Benevolent Fund

Certain additional information may be collected from members and dependants who are beneficiaries of the ACCA Benevolent Fund. More information on use and disclosure of your data will be provided to you if you apply for the Fund.

2.9 IP addresses

If you visit our website, we collect information about the Internet Protocol (IP) addresses of your device used to access the site which helps us monitor the level of activity and the service we provide. For more information, please see our website Privacy and Cookies Notice

3. How will ACCA collect your information?

3.1 We will collect data directly from you (for example from registration forms, change of details forms, at fairs and events and via our website) and will create some data internally (e.g. when we assign you a member ID or determine examination results).

3.2 We may also collect some data from external sources. For example:

  • employers and learning providers may provide ACCA with relevant information on members and students employed by and/or training with them, including where they are registering you for a course (see also paragraph 5.5 below);
  • ACCA's service providers (e.g. examiners and invigilators) will send ACCA information relevant to the service they are providing. See also paragraph 5.1 below; and
  • members of the public may provide information to ACCA in relation to complaints and/or investigations.

4. Where will your data be held?

4.1 ACCA's main information systems are located within the European Economic Area and accessed by ACCA's customer services teams within the UK. Other teams within ACCA may need to access, use and store your data in certain circumstances for the purposes listed in paragraph 2 above, e.g. to communicate with you in relation to training or examinations or to investigate incidents or complaints.

4.2 If you are an overseas member or student, your information may be accessed by ACCA's local offices in that country and local records may be maintained (subject to local legislation).

5. Will your data be disclosed to any third parties?

5.1 Service providers: ACCA uses a number of third-party service providers in order to carry out the activities described above, for example, to send you mailings or operate or administer exams. ACCA requires such service providers to use your personal data only for the purpose of the relevant service.

5.2 Joint scheme partners: In some countries, ACCA operates joint qualification schemes with third parties. Both ACCA and the joint scheme partner will need to share information with each other in order to operate the scheme.

5.3 ACCA Exchange: Certain information, such as your name and examination results, will be shared with employers and learning providers who receive this service, subject to obtaining your consent - see paragraph 2.4 above.

5.4 Employers and learning providers may be provided with your student results, where you have given them your consent to register you for  any of the following courses:

  • Certificate in Internal Financial Reporting Standards for SMEs
  • Certificate in Internal Financial Reporting
  • Certificate in International Auditing

5.5 Learning provider results service: Some learning providers subscribe to an ACCA 'results service' under which they may access examination results of the students they have trained in order to monitor their pass rate performance. Your learning provider is required to inform you separately if they use your data in this way.

5.6 Continuing professional development (CPD) accredited employers: ACCA may liaise with employers who are accredited for CPD purposes to verify your employment with them and/or to validate their accreditation as a CPD provider.

5.7 Approved employers: If you are employed by an organisation which is a member of ACCA's approved employer scheme, ACCA may liaise with your employer and provide relevant details in order to give you the opportunity to receive additional member benefits (e.g. training courses).

5.8 Publications: ACCA is required to publish customer information in its members' directory and a register relating to accountancy accreditations. ACCA may also, at its option, include details of its affiliates and members (including names and the country that they are located in) within lists to be published within appropriate publications, such as Accountancy Age and the Financial Times in the UK, and similar overseas  financial and accountancy publications.

5.9 Verification of details and employment assistance: if you are a student, subject to obtaining your consent, ACCA may provide relevant details to recruitment agencies, employers and educational or professional bodies (e.g. other accountancy bodies) for the purposes of assisting you to find appropriate employment once qualified or verification of membership, training and qualification details.

5.10 Professional advisers and legal authorities: ACCA may disclose your personal data to its professional advisers, legal authorities, other professional bodies, other  regulators or other third parties in order to investigate complaints and disciplinary matters, to exercise or defend its legal rights or otherwise where required by law.

6. How long will ACCA retain your data?

ACCA will retain your details for as long as they are needed for the relevant purposes listed at paragraph 2 above. ACCA may also retain certain records for other legitimate reasons (including after your relationship with ACCA has ended), for example to resolve any potential disputes, cross-check against future membership applications and to comply with other reporting and retention obligations.

7. Cookies

For information about cookies used on our website, please see our website Privacy and Cookies Notice

8. Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA)

ACCA is not listed as a 'public body' for the purposes of the FOIA and therefore is not under a duty to comply with the provisions of the FOIA.

9. How to access or update your details

9.1 You have certain rights in relation to your personal data held by ACCA including the right to access a copy of such personal data (commonly referred to as a 'subject access request'). Please note that a £10 charge (referred to as the 'Fee') applies for this access.  If you wish to obtain a copy of your personal data, please submit your request, together with the Fee, to the Data Protection Officer in writing to the address given below:

Data Protection Officer
ACCA
Corporate Assurance
29 Lincoln's Inn Fields
London WC2A 3EE
Email: Data Protection Officer

Before providing you with your personal data, we may require confirmation of your identity or further information about the data requested to assist ACCA to locate your personal data.

Please also let us know if you believe any data we hold to be inaccurate or if you have other concerns about our use of your personal data.

These rights are subject to certain exemptions which may apply, for example, in relation to some professional conduct matters and accessing examination scripts.

9.2 Please note that it is your responsibility to inform ACCA of any change to your contact details and to keep ACCA informed of which courses you have attended to satisfy ongoing CPD requirements.

9.3 You can update your contact details and options for receiving publications and communications via myACCA or by contacting ACCA's Connect team

Appendix to ACCA's data protection notice ACCA affiliated entities

  1. Association of Chartered Certified Accountants: Professional accountancy body and main operating and membership entity.
  2. Certified Accountants (Publications) Limited: publishes Accounting & Business magazine.
  3. Certified Accountants Educational Trust: publishes Student Accountant and Finance Matters magazines.
  4. Certified Accountants Educational Projects Ltd: manages sharing of information for marketing purposes.
  5. Chartered Certified Accountants' Benevolent Fund: administers ACCA's Benevolent Fund scheme.
  6. Association of Authorised Public Accountants: Professional accountancy body for specific members.
  7. ACCA National Offices (overseas companies, branches and representative offices).