The Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Act has introduced measures to prevent abuse of personal information held on the Companies House register.
One of the aims is to balance the need for corporate transparency with the understanding that personal information should only be published when it’s necessary and proportionate to do so.
These measures will come into force over the next two years in a phased approach.
Suppression of personal information
Under the act, individuals will be able to apply to suppress the following information from historical documents:
- residential addresses in most instances when shown elsewhere on the register (for example, when used as a registered office address)
- day of birth for documents registered before 10 October 2015 (only the month and year of birth have been publicly displayed since 10 October 2015)
- business occupation
Protection of personal information because of risk of harm
Individuals at personal risk of physical harm or violence as a result of their personal information being on a Companies House public register (for example, domestic abuse survivors) will be able to apply to have their information protected from public view.
The information that can be protected from public view includes:
- name (or previous names)
- sensitive addresses where public disclosure puts its residents at risk (for example, a women’s domestic abuse refuge)
- in the most serious cases, all other details, for example, service address and partial date of birth
These measures will all need secondary legislation before they’re implemented.