First contact privacy

When you first email, phone or text me, I may ask for some information from you. I respect your privacy, and have a full privacy policy that I give all new clients, but if you are at the stage of making an enquiry this is an outline of what information I will ask for, why, how it is stored, how long for, and how it will be disposed of. If you wish to have a copy of the full policy before we meet, please email me

My name is Anna Gray, and I provide short-term counselling and long-term therapy in North West London. I am a qualified counsellor, a member of the BACP (membership number 00921668), and am registered with the Information Commissioners’ Office (ICO reference number ZA484519).

What information do I collect about you on first contact, and how will I use it?

  • Your name and contact details (email and telephone), to be able to contact you about sessions. I will not use your information for marketing purposes.
  • Information about your education or employment status, including income level to determine cost of assessment session.
  • At first contact you may also choose whether or not to provide a brief description of what is bringing you for counselling now.

How will your information be stored?

  • Paper files are kept in locked cabinets, and electronic files are encrypted. Client files use client numbers not names; personal data that identifies you is stored separately and securely to protect your anonymity.
  • I keep an appointment diary with initials only. Past diaries are stored in a locked cabinet.
  • I use a mobile phone to manage appointments. The phone is fingerprint-locked and contacts are kept by initials only.

The data that I collect from you is not transferred outside the European Economic Area (“EEA”).
I will take all steps reasonably necessary to ensure that your data is treated securely and in accordance with this privacy notice. Please be aware that the transmission of information via the internet is not completely secure. Although my computer and phone are both security protected and I will do my best to protect your personal data I cannot guarantee the security of data that is transmitted to my site. Any transmission is at your own risk.

How long will your information be held and how will I dispose of it?

  • If you choose not to continue beyond the initial contact, information collected about you at this point will be held for no more than 30 days.
  • Client notes will be kept for three years after therapy ends, or in the case of children or young people under 18, for three years after the client turns 18. After this they will be securely destroyed (via shredding / full deletion of both personal data and anonymised notes).
  • For the information you provided with consent, this consent can be withdrawn at any time and the information will be removed.
  • Mobile phone call logs and texts will be deleted three months after the end of our contract, along with any saved contact details.
  • Email conversations to manage appointments will be deleted three months after the end of our contract.

Will your information be shared? If so who with, and for what lawful purpose?

Counselling notes are not shared with anyone unless I am legally required to do so, or you specifically request I share them. I may have to share my notes if they are subpoenaed by court. Statutory law requires me to tell the relevant authorities if I become aware of international terrorist activities, money laundering or drug trafficking.

If we meet I will give you a copy of the the full policy. Please refer to it for full details. If you would like a full copy before meeting, or have any questions, please email