Last updated: July 2022
We understand that your privacy and the security of your personal information are extremely important.
This statement sets out:
- what we do with your personal data
- what we do to keep it secure
- from where and how we collect it
- your rights in relation to the personal information we hold about you
This statement applies if you interact with us:
- in person
- over the phone
- via email
- through any of our websites
- on social media
If you don’t want to read all the detail, here are the things we think you’d really want to know:
- The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) is the professional body for chemists, a learned society, and a publisher of journals, books and databases for the science community
- We will make sure that our contact with you is relevant and in accordance with the preferences that you give us. You can change your contact preferences at any time
- You have a number of rights over your personal information. How you can exercise these rights is set out in this statement
- We do send marketing communications, if we’re allowed to, and we do this to encourage you to engage with our activities and services or buy our products
- We will always provide simple mechanisms for you to let us know that you want us to stop contacting you
- We will never pass your personal details to anyone outside the RSC for them to use for their own marketing purposes unless you have previously provided us with your informed and specific consent
- Your personal data will be stored safely and will remain secure at all times
- Your personal data will be, where appropriate, shared within the RSC
- Our data processing activities are not intended for children and we do not knowingly collect children’s data
- We do use a number of third parties to process your personal data on our behalf and some of them are based outside of the European Economic Area, but we always take steps to ensure that appropriate safeguards are in place to protect your privacy rights
- No personal data will be kept any longer than necessary in order to fulfil the purpose it was collected for, and if you ask us to, it will be deleted
In more detail
- Keeping you informed about our products, activities and services
- Legal basis for processing your personal information
- Sources of your personal data not supplied directly by you
- Who are we?
- Who might we share your personal information with?
- What sorts of personal information do we hold?
- Your rights
Who are we?
When we say ‘we’ or ‘us’ in this statement, we are referring to the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC). The RSC is incorporated in the United Kingdom (UK) by Royal Charter and is registered as a charity with the Charity Commission For England and Wales (charity number 207890).
The RSC is registered as a data controller with the UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) with the Reference number Z4939879.
What sort of personal information do we hold?
- Information that you provide to us such as your name, address, date of birth, telephone number, email address, payment information, and any feedback you give to us, including by phone, email, post, or when you communicate with us via social media
- Information about the services that we provide to you (including, for example, the things we have provided to you, when and where, what you paid, the way you use our products, activities, and services, and so on)
- Information required to make decisions about your applications for the products, activities and services we offer (for example, membership, article submissions, awards)
- Your account login details for our websites and apps, including your username and chosen password
- Information about whether or not you want to receive marketing communications from us
- Information about any device you have used to access our services (such as your browser or IP address).
- Information from social media activity (such as likes, shares and tweets) when you interact with us on social media
- Information collected via cookies or similar technology stored on your device. More information is set out later in this statement
- Information captured by CCTV inside and within the grounds of RSC premises
- Images and videos taken with consent that we may use in printed material or on our websites
- Your health or personal financial circumstances (only if you share such information with our Chemists’ Community Fund)
Our legal basis for processing your personal information
Whenever we process your personal data, we must have something called a “legal basis” for what we do. The different legal bases we rely on are:
- Performance of a contract - we must process your personal data in order to be able to provide you with one of our products, activities or services
- Consent - you have told us you are happy for us to process your personal data for a specific purpose(s)
- Legitimate interests - our processing is necessary for us to conduct our business, but not where our interests are overridden by your interests or rights
- Public interest - our processing is necessary for us to meet our Royal Charter duty for serving the public interest
- Legal obligation - we are required to process your personal information by law
Whenever we process your data by Consent, we keep a record of the consent you provided.
Whenever we process your data under Legitimate Interests, we complete a legitimate interest assessment form and carry out a balancing test to safeguard privacy rights.
How do we use your personal information?
We may use your information for the following purposes:
To provide our products, activities, and services
We need to use your personal information to make our products, activities, and services available to you. When you order, subscribe, or submit a request, we will process any personal information you share in order to meet your expectations and our commitment to you as a customer.
We use your personal data to provide you with information and news about our products, activities, and services by email, phone, post, and online advertising. As part of this, online advertising may be displayed on RSC websites and on other organisations’ websites and online media channels.
To contact you
We use your personal information to contact you. This may be in relation to an issue you have raised with us, a service update, market research or to ask for your feedback.
For safety and security
We use personal information to help provide safe and secure environments for our business to be conducted in and for our staff to work in. To enable this, we use CCTV inside and within the grounds of RSC premises.
Analytics and profiling
We use your personal information for statistical analysis and to help us understand more about our customers. This helps us to serve you better, to find ways to improve our products, activities and services, and to make them more relevant to you.
Automated decision making
The RSC does not use any automated means to make decisions about individuals.
We will share email addresses, which have been given directly to RSC by data subjects, or browsing information, obtained in ways such as pixel tracking, to enable us to show tailored adverts on a third-party platform, such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google, who may perform profiling.
International transfers of personal information
On occasions, the information you provide to us may be transferred to countries outside the UK. For example, this may happen where any of our servers or those of our third party service providers are from time to time located in a country outside of the UK. These countries may not have similar data protection laws to the UK but, where possible, we seek to work with service providers whose servers are wholly located within the UK or, if that is not possible, within a country covered by UK adequacy regulations.
If we transfer your information to a country not covered by UK adequacy regulations, we will take steps to ensure that appropriate safeguards are in place to protect your privacy rights. These steps include contracting with providers on the basis of the UK’s International Data Transfer Agreement (IDTA). Our drafting of IDTAs makes reference to Data Protection Impact Assessments (DPIA) and Transfer Risk Assessments (TRA) in all cases.
We have not set out the specific circumstances for each international transfer. You can email us for the details of how we protect specific transfers of your data.
Keeping you informed about our products, activities, and services
We would like from time to time to tell you about the great RSC products, activities, and services that we think you might be interested in. Where we have explicit consent or when it is determined there is a mutual legitimate interest, we may do this by post, email, text message, phone, through online advertising, or by any other electronic means.
We won't send you marketing messages if you tell us not to, but if you subscribe to a service from us, we will still need to send you service-related messages and may still send you surveys (you can always opt out of these via the survey email itself).
All messages sent under Legitimate Interests contain appropriate safeguards to ensure we do not contact you again when you might not be not interested. This is normally an unsubscribe link.
For communications processed under Consent, you can withdraw your consent using the unsubscribe link in a message or at any time by sending an email.
Please note that it can take a little while for unsubscribe requests to be fully completed since some items may already be in transit.
You have a number of rights under data protection legislation which, in certain circumstances, you may be able to exercise in relation to the personal information we process about you. These include:
- the right to access a copy of the personal information we hold about you
- the right to correction of inaccurate personal information we hold about you
- the right to restrict our use of your personal information
- the right to be forgotten
- the right of data portability and
- the right to object to our use of your personal information
Where we rely on consent as the legal basis on which we process your personal information, you may also withdraw that consent at any time.
If you are seeking to exercise any of these rights, Our Data Protection Officer can be contacted by e-mail or in writing to Thomas Graham House, Science Park, Milton Road, Cambridge, CB4 0WF.
Please note that we will need to verify your identity before we can fulfil any of your rights under data protection law. This helps us to protect your personal data against fraudulent requests.
You also have the right to lodge a complaint with the Information Commissioner's Office.
How long will we keep your personal information for?
We will keep your personal information for the purposes set out in this privacy statement and in accordance with the law and relevant regulations. We will not retain your personal information for longer than is necessary.
We maintain an Information Retention Schedule for all our processing activities. You can email us for details on how long we retain information for specific processing of your data.
We take protecting your personal information seriously and are continuously developing our security systems and processes. Some of the controls we have in place are:
- We limit physical access to our premises and user access to our systems to only those that we believe are entitled to be there
- We use technology controls for our information systems, such as firewalls, user verification, strong data encryption, and separation of roles, systems, and data
- Systems are proactively monitored through a “detect and respond” information security function
- We use industry “good practice” standards to support the maintenance of robust information security
- We enforce a “need to know” approach, for access to any data or systems
We are certified under the Cyber Essentials scheme (certificate number: IASME-CE-043025), which is the UK Government-backed scheme helping organisations protect against a whole range of the most common cyberattacks.
We use CCTV surveillance for our sites at Thomas Graham House in Cambridge and at Burlington House in London for the protection of our volunteers, staff, visitors, and business premises. This includes investigating accidents, incidents, criminal activities, and breaches of our policies. We store recordings for a period of 60 days, after which time they are automatically deleted.
In the event of an incident, recordings may be downloaded by our staff and stored securely in the interests of preserving evidence for any potential investigation and/or claim(s).
Occasionally we may share recordings with public or regulatory authorities or in response to requests from individuals seeking to protect their rights, the rights of others, or helping to prevent crime and nuisance. We will only share CCTV if we consider a request to be appropriate. We may retain recordings that are downloaded for these purposes for a period of up to six years to take into account the statutory limitation periods for any potential investigation(s) or claim(s). Once any potential investigation(s) or claim(s) has concluded, we delete the relevant recording.
Sources of your personal data not supplied directly by you
We try whenever possible to avoid processing your data when it is not supplied by you. The occasions when we do are detailed below.
We may source personal data via publicly facing websites, journal papers, peer recommendations, institution websites, and contracted third-party databases to collate recommended contact lists for potential authors, reviewers, and editors.
Prizes, Awards, and Lectureships
We accept the nomination of individuals who might be eligible for a prize, award, or journal lectureship. The individuals concerned will likely not be aware of their nomination (which will contain some personal data)
RSC members can confidentially nominate any person they believe desirable to admit as an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (HonFRSC). The review of such information is restricted to the Nominations Committee.
The legal basis for processing these data is Legitimate Interests.
Our products and services that require the processing of personal data are not intended for or directed at children and we do not knowingly collect children’s data for these. The RSC is not a provider of “information society services” as referenced in Article 8 of the UK General Data Protection Regulation (referred to by the UK’s ICO as “online services”).
At some of our events, we may take photographs and videos that include children to publicise their achievements (e.g. prize winners). We may also take photographs or videos showing children taking part in a scientific activity (e.g. carrying out an experiment). In all cases, images are only taken if consent is secured from whoever holds parental responsibility for the child either directly or through a school’s own data protection processes.
We take the safeguarding of children (including the protection of their personal data) seriously so, for these purposes, we recognise any individual under the age of 18 years old as being a child.
On occasions, the RSC runs competitions for schoolchildren. In such cases, the RSC does not collect children’s personal data. Any related procedures requiring personal data processing (for example, issuing of certificates) are carried out through a school’s own data protection processes.
Chemists’ Community Fund
Any personal information that you share with the Chemists’ Community Fund will be kept confidential and for the sole use of the Chemists’ Community Fund. It is not accessible to RSC staff working in other areas.
Your personal information may be reviewed by RSC staff to help us deliver our charitable activities and raise funds.
The RSC is registered with the UK’s Fundraising Regulator.