Smart meters- our data privacy and security policy

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1. What data does a Thames Water smart meter collect?

Your smart meter will only record the amount of water your home has used each hour. Once your meter is activated you can see your daily water usage on your online account. We are working on making your hourly water usage available to you online soon.

2. How is the data collected on my water use?

Smart meters send frequent and automatic hourly readings through a secure wireless network every four hours (each transmission contains the last twelve hours' worth of data). If for any reason your meter is unable to connect to our network we will try to get it back online but if we can’t we will send out someone to read the meter each time your bill is due.

3. Why do you collect smart meter data?

We use the smart meter data to:

  • Allow you to view your water use online.
  • Give you control over your bill as you’ll only pay for the water you use.
  • Find and fix leaks quickly on both your supply pipe (the pipe that connects your home to the main supply pipe in the street) and our network.
  • Manage our network and make decisions on things such as pressure and pipe size.
  • Measure the impact of our smart metering programme at a customer and network level.

4. Who has access to this data and why?

Only certain people in Thames Water and those working on our metering programme can use the hourly data on water use. We don’t allow anyone to combine the hourly usage data and your personal account information, unless you have asked us to or there is urgent action required, such as a leak. We never sell your data to third parties or use it for marketing without your agreement. We do use some third parties to manage parts of our metering processes, who follow the same data privacy policies as we do.

5. How is the data stored?

Your water use data is stored in a secure database, separate from personal data relating to your account. The database is encrypted and stored in line with the requirements of the Data Protection Act. For more information see our Privacy policy.

6. How long do you keep this data?

Your water use data is stored on our secure database for a minimum of two years. This allows us to measure the impact of our smart metering programme. After this period, we summarise the data and keep it for our long-term planning.

7. How do you keep the wireless network secure?

We take the security of our wireless network very seriously and do regular assessments and tests on the security of our network to make sure data is protected.