We don't know whether the most recent response to this request contains information or not – if you are Sumsi Timonda please sign in and let everyone know.

Dear Home Office,

My previous request (55668) about API data was refused citing exemptions in the FOIA. This request, which I have divided into two parts, is about a different aspect of API collection. I hope disclosure is not exempt.

1) After five years, API data is moved from the Semaphore system to a separate storage area.
---a. How many records exist in this separate storage area as of November 2019?
---b. From what date is the oldest record in this separate storage area as of November 2019?
---c. Is data automatically deleted after five (and 10) years or does it have to be manually purged?

2) What is the procedure for in-country and overseas immigration caseworkers—Including entry clearance officers—to obtain applicants’ travel history data (from before the exit checks system was introduced in 2015) from a) Semaphore b) Separate storage area? What checks are in place to ensure that caseworkers only have access to API data relevant to the case they are dealing with? Can ECOs access travel history data about British and EEA citizens?

I want to take this opportunity to thank the Home Office for its responses to my previous requests.

Yours faithfully,

Sumsi Timonda

FOI Requests, Home Office

Sumsi Timonda,

Thank you for contacting the Home Office with your request.

This has been assigned to a caseworker (case ref 56603). We will aim to send you a full response by 23/12/2019 which is twenty working days from the date we received your request.

If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to contact us.

Thank you,

P. Zebedee
FOI Requests
Home Office

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FOI Responses, Home Office

Dear Sumsi Timonda
 
Thank you for your e-mail of 22 November, in which you ask for information
on API records.  Your request is being handled as a request for
information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA).
 
 
We are considering your request.  Although the FOIA carries a presumption
in favour of disclosure, it provides exemptions which may be used to
withhold information in specified circumstances.  Some of these
exemptions, referred to as ‘qualified’ exemptions, are subject to a public
interest test.  This test is used to balance the public interest in
disclosure against the public interest in favour of withholding the
information. The FOIA allows us to exceed the 20 working day response
target where we need to consider the public interest test fully. 
 
The information which you have requested is being considered under the
exemption[s] in section 31 of the FOIA, which relates to law enforcement.
This is a qualified exemption and to consider the public interest test
fully we need to extend the 20 working day response period. We now aim to
let you have a full response by 23 January.
 
Yours sincerely
 
H  Reid
Border Force – Information Rights Team
 

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Dear Home Office,

I have been reminded that a response to my request is now long overdue. By when do you aim to let me have a full response?

Yours faithfully,

Sumsi Timonda

FOI Responses, Home Office

1 Attachment

Dear Sumsi Timonda
 
Thank you for your information request.  Please see the attached reply.
 
 
Yours sincerely
 
H  Reid
Border Force – Information Rights Team
_______________________________________
From: FOI Responses
Sent: 23 December 2019 16:23
To: '[FOI #622788 email]'
<[FOI #622788 email]>
Subject: RE: FoI Case Ref 56603 - (Sumsi Timonda) -PIT Letter
 
 
Dear Sumsi Timonda
 
Thank you for your e-mail of 22 November, in which you ask for information
on API records.  Your request is being handled as a request for
information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA).
 
 
We are considering your request.  Although the FOIA carries a presumption
in favour of disclosure, it provides exemptions which may be used to
withhold information in specified circumstances.  Some of these
exemptions, referred to as ‘qualified’ exemptions, are subject to a public
interest test.  This test is used to balance the public interest in
disclosure against the public interest in favour of withholding the
information. The FOIA allows us to exceed the 20 working day response
target where we need to consider the public interest test fully. 
 
The information which you have requested is being considered under the
exemption[s] in section 31 of the FOIA, which relates to law enforcement.
This is a qualified exemption and to consider the public interest test
fully we need to extend the 20 working day response period. We now aim to
let you have a full response by 23 January.
 
Yours sincerely
 
H  Reid
Border Force – Information Rights Team
 

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Dear Home Office,

Thank you for your response to request 56603.

You say that you do not have a separate storage area for API data. The ICBI's inspection of exit checks (https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk... page 26) says "The Home Office retains travel data in Semaphore for 5 years to enable “watchlisting” checks to be done, after which it is archived to a separate storage area for a further 5 years"

Please explain the apparent discrepancy in your response and this report.

Yours faithfully,

Sumsi Timonda

FOI Requests, Home Office

Dear Sumsi Timonda,

Thank you for contacting the Home Office with your request.

This has been assigned to a caseworker (case ref 57692). We will aim to send you a full response by 06/03/2020 which is twenty working days from the date we received your request.

If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to contact us.

Thank you,

N McKenzie
Home Office

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FOI Responses, Home Office

1 Attachment

Dear Sumsi Timonda,

 

Please find attached response to your Freedom of Information request dated
07 February 2020.

 

Please note we are sending this to you by e-mail only.

 

Information Rights Team

Home Office

Third Floor, Peel Building

2 Marsham Street

London SW1P 4DF

e-mail: [1][email address]

 

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References

Visible links
1. mailto:[email address]

Dear Home Office,

Thank you for your response.

1) In my previous request I had asked about the oldest API record in the separate storage area, which you have clarified does not exist. Please let me know
---a. from what date is the oldest API record the Semaphore database as of March 2020.
---b. how many records in the database are subject to further access control as of March 2020.

2) I had contacted your DPU team on 10th February 2020 who told me "Entry and Exit data is routinely destroyed after 5 years. We can search for records up to 10 years if specifically required, but cannot guarantee a positive result." In a response to a previous response to a FOIR made by N Akhtar in 2014 (https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/d...), the DPU team wrote " Also, the e-Borders system only retains data for up to five years so we can not provide any data for journeys made more than five years ago."

Please clarify whether or not the information provided by the DPU on the two occasions is incorrect or misleading, specifically about data being routinely destroyed after 5 years and data being retained only for up to five years.

Yours faithfully,

Sumsi Timonda

FOI Requests, Home Office

Thank you for contacting the Home Office FOI Requests Mailbox.  

We will endeavour to respond within 2 working days.

If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to contact us.  

 

Thank you,  

FOI Requests Home Office

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FOI Requests, Home Office

Sumsi Timonda,

Thank you for contacting the Home Office with your request.

This has been assigned to a caseworker (case ref 58121). We will aim to send you a full response by 03/04/2020 which is twenty working days from the date we received your request.

If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to contact us.

Thank you,

P. Zebedee
FOI Requests
Home Office

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FOI Responses, Home Office

1 Attachment

Dear Sumsi Timonda,

 

Please find attached response to your Freedom of Information request dated
05 March 2020.

 

Please note we are sending this to you by e-mail only.

 

Information Rights Team

Home Office

Third Floor, Peel Building

2 Marsham Street

London SW1P 4DF

e-mail: [1][email address]

 

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References

Visible links
1. mailto:[email address]

Dear Home Office,

I had contacted the SAR team [email address]). The copy of the email I have recieved is as follows:

From:
Subject Access Request<[email address]>
Tuesday, 11 February 2020 16:36
To
Sum.tim
<[email address]>

Thank you for your reply.

Entry and Exit data is routinely destroyed after 5 years. We can search for records up to 10 years if specifically required, but cannot guarantee a positive result.

Regards,

SARU

Yours faithfully,

Sumsi Timonda

FOI Requests, Home Office

Thank you for contacting the Home Office FOI Requests Mailbox.  

We will endeavour to respond within 2 working days.

If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to contact us.  

 

Thank you,  

FOI Requests Home Office

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FOI Requests, Home Office

Dear sir / madam,

Thank you for your email; do you wish to submit a new Freedom of Information request and/or Subject Access Request? If so, we would be grateful if you can specify what recorded information it is you wish to obtain.

Thank you,

P. Zebedee
Home Office
Lower Ground Floor | Seacole | 2 Marsham Street | London SW1P 4DF
www.gov.uk/home-office

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Dear FOI Requests,

My last email was for clarification of request 58121. On 19th April, I was asked for clarification including a copy of correspondence from the DPU/SARU. For clarity, this is a FOIA request regarding the veracity of information provided by the SARU.

Yours sincerely,

Sumsi Timonda

FOI Requests, Home Office

Thank you for contacting the Home Office FOI Requests Mailbox.  

We will endeavour to respond within 2 working days.

If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to contact us.  

 

Thank you,  

FOI Requests Home Office

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FOI Requests, Home Office

Dear Sumsi Timonda,

Thank you for contacting the Home Office with your request.

This has been assigned to a caseworker (case ref 58302). We will aim to send you a full response by 22/04/2020 which is twenty working days from the date we received your request.

If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to contact us.

Thank you,

P. Zebedee
FOI Requests
Home Office

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We don't know whether the most recent response to this request contains information or not – if you are Sumsi Timonda please sign in and let everyone know.