Sent to us by a reader who wishes to remain anonymous:
I have been having issues with OVO Energy regarding harassment over Smart Meters. I have told them I don’t want one but the bombardment doesn’t stop. I am aware that in 2022 they were warned by the ICO regarding their aggressive attempts to force Smart Meters on people who didn’t want them.
In readiness for a legal claim of harassment I submitted a Subject Access Request, what I found amongst the documents was shocking and wrong on many levels. It transpired that Morrisons Data Services had visited my property from the outside and took detailed close up pictures of my front door lock. They then obviously forwarded the image to OVO. All of this was without permission or any legal authority.
I was not subject to any debt collectors process, no entry warrants had been applied for or granted. OVO were instructing others to take sensitive home security images and share them with whoever they choose. This is wrong on so many levels. Any data sharing needs to be necessary and proportionate; this is neither.
In 2022 OVO submitted a document to parliament asking for a change in government legislation to allow forced entry to properties to fit Smart Meters against people’s wishes, it wasn’t granted. OVO and no doubt the other Energy suppliers that use Morrisons Data Services are harvesting such sensitive home security details on an industrial scale in the anticipation that future legislation might allow them to break into your property to fit a smart meter.
You also have the data sharing security issue as well as the invasion of privacy and Breach of ECHR Article 8, Right for respect for your home and property. What vetting and security clearance have the people who take these images undergone? They obviously haven’t been Data Protection trained or if they have, they totally ignore it? Are these images taken on work phones or private phones? What measures are in place to stop these images falling into the wrong hands and being used by burglars.
This has not just happened to me. It is likely that anyone who has indicated that they don’t want a Smart meter has had someone stalking around their property taking sensitive images of their home security without their knowledge and sharing it with any number of people.
I urge everyone who has not had a Smart meter fitted to contact their energy provider and request a Subject Access Request and see if you have also been subject to what amounts to stalking and illegal use of your private data. You will need to attach photographic ID and proof of address such as a bill. They then have one month to process this information and send it out to you. Request a paper copy as well as an electronic copy. You may well find images such as this:
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