Here at the Co-op, our customers and members trust us to protect the data that we hold about them. We all have a role to play in making this happen. Mobile devices create a risk to this data, as they can be used to copy and share information. By mobile devices, we mean mobile phones, smart phones, tablets, and other devices that can be used to capture and share information.

This Policy sets out what you need to do about using mobile devices to make sure we’re all doing our bit to protect our customer’s information.

Crucial bits

This Policy applies to all colleagues who work in one of our designated customer data areas. You’ll know if this means you, as these areas will have signs up about mobile device usage. But if you’re not sure, then just check with your manager. It also applies if you’re visiting one of these areas.

If you’re working in, or visiting one of these designated areas, then you can’t use your mobile device, or have it out on your desk, unless it’s an authorised device (see ‘authorised mobile devices below’). This includes sending/receiving texts or calls, taking photographs or videos, using social media or playing games.

So, if you’ve got a locker then put it in there while you’re working. If not, then it needs to be switched off and kept in your pocket or bag. Just so it’s clear, mobile devices shouldn’t be left out on desks, even if they’re switched off.

Just so everyone’s clear, any breach of this policy may lead to disciplinary action, up to and including summary dismissal. See the Disciplinary policy for more information.

Things to think about

Contacting you in an emergency

If you can’t have your mobile device with you at work, you might be worrying about how your friends and family would be able to contact you in an emergency. Your manager will give you emergency contact numbers that they can use if they need to get hold of you urgently. Remember, these numbers are for emergency use only.

Where you can use mobile devices

You can use your mobile device in the break out areas, before or after your shift or during your break.

Authorised mobile devices

If you’ve got a mobile device that’s provided by the Co-op for use in your role, then you can use this in the designated customer data area. The security settings we apply mean that it doesn’t pose a risk to customer data.

If you need to use your personal device to deliver your role, then this needs to be agreed by your manager. Then it’s an authorised device and you can use it in the designated customer data area.


If you’ve got an external visitor coming into a customer data area, then it’s your responsibility to make sure they know about the Mobile Devices Policy and follow it while they are with you. In line with the Physical Access Control Policy which is available on the intranet, you should make sure you’re with your visitor at all times.

If you need further support

If you have any questions about this policy, please speak to your manager. If managers need advice they can email