Voting and registering to vote
We keep 2 registers of information given by the public:
- the electoral register
- the open register, also known as the edited register
The electoral register lists the names and addresses of everyone who is registered to vote.
The register is used for electoral purposes, such as making sure only eligible people can vote. It is also used for other limited purposes specified in law, such as:
- detecting crime, such as fraud
- calling people for jury service
- checking credit applications
The open register is based on the electoral register but is not used for elections.
It can be bought by any person, company or organisation. For example, it is used by businesses and charities to check name and address details.
Your name and address will be included in the open register unless you ask for them to be removed.
Opting out of the open register
Removing your details from the open register does not affect your right to vote.
You can choose not to be listed on the open register when:
- you register to vote
- you respond to our annual update to the electoral register
Both forms give you the choice to 'opt out'.