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The State Pension Credit (Warm Home Discount) Regulations 2011 allow participating energy supply companies to use the information they receive through the Warm Home Discount scheme for the primary purpose of providing a discount on energy bills to pensioners whose data are matched. The Regulations also allow participating energy supply companies to use the information for other limited reasons, including providing people with measures, advice and assistance on energy and thermal efficiency. As such, participating companies could use this information to target the support they are required to deliver under the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) from October 2012. Energy suppliers are also able to use the information they hold on additional Warm Home discount beneficiaries, beyond those pensioners found, through data matching, to target measures to a wider group of low income and vulnerable households.
In addition the Government is working with energy supply companies to put in place a referrals mechanism through the Energy Saving Advice Service to help target ECO towards eligible households. This formed part of the consultation on the ECO held last year. In addition we are exploring whether Government data could be used to confirm a customer's eligibility, where the customer consents to this, before-the referral is passed on to an obligated energy supply company.
There are no current plans for seeking wider legal consent data sharing powers for ECO and the Green Deal.