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Frequently asked questions

What is the survey about?

We would like to ask about your experiences buying goods and services over the past year, including the quality of the items and service you received. Taking part should take about 15 minutes of your time depending on your circumstances. All questions are voluntary and there are no right or wrong answers.

Who is carrying out the Consumer Protection Study?

The Consumer Protection Study will be conducted by the National Centre for Social Research (NatCen), Britain’s largest independent social research agency. For 50 years, NatCen has been working with charities and government to understand what the public really thinks and to explore life in Britain today. We are independent of all government departments and political parties.

Who is funding the Consumer Protection Study?

The Consumer Protection Study is funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy to help inform policy decisions.

How did you choose my address?

Your address has been selected at random from a list of all addresses in the United Kingdom, kept by the Post Office. This is to make sure that the survey represents the whole country. The findings will not identify you or your family.

Can I take part if I can’t complete the online survey?

If more convenient, you can complete the survey over the phone, by speaking to one of our experienced interviewers. Please phone us free on 0800 652 4569 to complete the survey or make a telephone appointment with one of our interviewers. We can be completely flexible about when you take part.

What will you do with the information I give?

The information you give will be used for research purposes only. Most of the results will appear as statistics and we will not identify your individual answers without seeking your permission.

How do you safeguard my privacy?

All your information will be held by NatCen until no longer required in accordance with current data protection legislation. Under this legislation, NatCen and BEIS are the ‘Data Controllers’ and we process your information on the basis of ‘Legitimate Interest’ and ‘Public Task’ respectively.

If you want to learn more about how we safeguard your privacy, your data and your rights you can read our data protection policy at or contact the NatCen Data Protection Officer by email:

Where can I find out more?

To find out more about the study, visit, email or phone us free on 0800 652 4569.