Where any of our websites provides links to third party websites, these links are provided for information purposes only and Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) is not responsible for the content, accuracy, copyright or privacy policies of this website.
It is Science Foundation Ireland policy to identify clearly links to external websites and it is your responsibility to satisfy yourself as to the adequacy of the practices of linked sites.
Definitions of some terms used in this Statement may be found at the end of this page.
Irish data protection comissioner
Science Foundation Ireland operates on behalf of the Office of Science, Technology and Innovation at the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation. The Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation is registered as a Data Processor with the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner with registration number 9072/A. Further information on your data privacy rights is available on the website of the Irish data protection commissioner.
Your right of access to personal information
You have the right to request a copy of the information held by us about you. If you wish to do so, please contact [email protected]. You will be required to make available proof of your identity. We may charge a fee for this which shall not exceed €6.35.
You may inform us of any changes or errors in your personal data, object to the use of your data, request us to block any specific users of your data or request us to delete your data by contacting us at [email protected]. In accordance with our obligations under the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003 we will, without charge, update or delete your personal data accordingly within forty (40) calendar days of receipt of your request.
Collection and use of personal data
We at SFI respect your right to privacy and comply with our obligations under the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003 (“DPA”). As such, we will not collect personal information about you on this website apart from those listed below:
- Information that you volunteer (for example, by emailing us, filling in an on-line form or by using SFI’s Award Management System)
- Statistical information gathered automatically when you visit the website
- Information provided voluntarily during registration
- Information provided voluntarily in using the website, for example on Greenwave.ie the submission of a species sighting, including date of sighting, location of sighting and optional photograph and note
- Information provided voluntarily when making an enquiry, request, entering a competition or performing a similar activity through the website
Any such information that you do volunteer will be held on secure servers. This personal data that you volunteer to us will be processed for the following purposes:
- To process on-line applications for awards through SFI’s Grants and Awards Management System (SESAME)
- To contact you in response to communications you might send us
- To provide you with the information / service / product you have requested
We will not disclose your personal data unless you have consented to this disclosure or unless appropriate measures have been put in place to ensure the disclosure is in compliance with the DPA and any other relevant legislation.
Collection and use of non-personal data
Like most websites, we gather statistical and analytical information collected on an aggregate basis of all visitors to our website. This website uses "cookie" technology. A cookie is a little piece of text stored by the browser on your computer, at the request of our server. Our cookies will record non-personal data that comprises information that cannot be used to identify or contact you, such as:
- The local address of the server you are using
- The top level domain name from which you accessed the internet
- The type of browser you are using
- The date and time you accessed our site
- The internet address used to link to our site
The IP address of a visitor to our website is recorded as part of this statistical data. However, no attempt whatsoever is made by SFI to link this IP address to any other information that may allow us to identify any individual visiting our site. We only use the non-personal data gathered from visitors to our website in an aggregate form to get a better understanding of where our visitors come from and to help us better design and organise our website.
You are always free to decline our cookies, if your browser permits, or to ask your browser to indicate when a cookie is being sent. You can also delete cookie files from your computer at your discretion. Note that if you decline our cookies or ask for notification each time a cookie is being sent, this may affect your ease of use of this website.
The safety of children using the Internet is very important to us. It is primarily the responsibility of parents and guardians to monitor their children’s usage of the Internet, though we will take reasonable steps not to compromise children’s rights and interests. We urge parents and guardians to instruct children never to give out their real names, addresses or phone numbers, without permission, when using the Internet. We recognise that there is a special obligation to protect personal information obtained from children. Visit the Department of Education & Skills / National Centre for Technology in Education website for more information on staying safe on the internet.
In order for children between the ages of twelve (12) and seventeen (17) to participate in interactive online activities that require registration, we may (and for children under twelve (12) we specifically will) require prior permission from a parent or guardian (opt-in). Where a child under twelve (12) seeks to register, we will request a parent or guardian email address for us to contact. In this case, we will email the parent/guardian and provide a link for them to accept or decline their child’s registration.
If the parent/guardian does not have an email address a copy of our permission form can be requested from the office at telephone number (01) 6073042. The form, once received, should be signed by the parent/guardian and returned to us either by fax (01) 6073237 or by mail to SFI Discover, Science Foundation Ireland, Wilton Park House, Wilton Place, Dublin 2, Ireland.
Storage of subscriber lists and personal information
Subscriber lists and any personal information submitted are kept on a server belonging to and administered by us, an agent of ours who provides website hosting services, and/or the email alert software. Our agent is registered with the Data Protection Commission and has provided written confirmation to us that it will comply with the relevant data protection obligations by keeping information secure and not using it for any purpose other than for which it was provided.
For backup purposes, copies of personal information and subscriber lists are stored on secure servers to which:
- A limited number of our staff within the Systems Department have physical access
- A limited number of our staff within the Communications Department, SFI Discover and the Systems Department have access via the internal network Text communications to mobile phones
- Our agents have remote access for the purposes of providing website development, maintenance or hosting services
Disclosure of personal information
Registrants’ school details that are submitted through the website’s forms may be published on the website.
For instance, on the Greenwave website, following a bird spotting submission, users are presented with an up-to-date view of all the sightings relating to their chosen bird. This presents a map of Ireland indicating all the other sightings that have been made for this bird by other schools throughout Ireland. The date of the sighting alongside the school name is presented on this map – no personal names are provided.
In the case of website forms from which information is not to be published on the website, we will not disclose a user’s personal information to any other party, unless it is:
- Required to do so by law
- Necessary in order to complete the user’s request or answer the user’s query
Security of your personal information
SFI is required under the DPA to have adequate security measures in place to prevent the unauthorised access to, or alteration or destruction of personal data in its possession. SFI takes its security responsibilities seriously and employs the most appropriate physical and technical measures, including staff training and awareness, and SFI reviews these measures regularly.
Staff who have access to personal information gathered from the websites are made aware of Data Protection responsibilities. Names of our staff members who have access to this information are available on request.
SFI will not retain your Personal Data for any longer than is necessary in relation to the purposes outlined in this Statement.
Security of information within our control
Our sites have security measures in place to protect the loss, misuse and alteration of the information under our control. Once we receive your transmission, we make our best effort to ensure its security on our systems. However, due to the nature of the Internet, we cannot ensure or warrant the security of any information you transmit to us or from our online products or services, and you do so at your own risk.
What else should you know about privacy
It is recommended that, where possible, you log out of your Internet session before you close your Internet browser. This will make it more difficult for others to access your personal information and correspondence specifically if you share a computer with someone else or are using a computer in a public place like a library or Internet cafe.
You agree that as an individual you, and in no way us, are responsible for the security of, and access to, your own computer. You agree that you are aware that whenever you voluntarily disclose personal information over the Internet that this information can be collected and used by others. Ultimately, you are solely responsible for maintaining the secrecy of your usernames and passwords and any account information. Our websites may contain links to other websites, and you should be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices on other websites.
Information provided voluntarily through website forms
Some pages of SFI Discover websites contain forms that allow you to:
- Register your personal and school details
- Sign up for a newsletter
- Submit information, for example a species sighting on Greenwave.ie
- Submit digital content, for example Science Week event photos
- Enter competitions
Depending on the particular form and its purpose, the type of information that you will be asked to submit may include relevant details such as your name, address, Department of Education roll number, school details and in some cases your mobile phone number.
Our websites may use Google Analytics, a web analytics service provided by Google, Inc. (“Google”). Google Analytics use “cookies”, which are text files placed on your computer, to help the website analyse how users use the site. The information generated by the cookie about your use of the website (including your IP address) will be transmitted to and stored by Google on servers in the United States. Google will use this information for the purpose of evaluating your use of the website, compiling reports on website activity for website operators and providing other services relating to website activity and Internet usage.
eNewsletter and eAlerts
If you subscribe to an eNewsletter, your email address is automatically added to our subscriber database. We will only use your email address for sending you communications which you have specifically subscribed or requested. However, from time to time we may contact you to advise upon developments and new services. All e-newsletters include details of how you can unsubscribe.
Text communications to mobile phones
Your mobile phone number will only be made available to a third party agent that we have contracted to operate and provide text communication services. Such agent may not use this information for any other purpose. We will only use your mobile phone number for the purposes for which you provided it to us. You can unsubscribe from these mobile services at any time.
We may make available competitions on our site(s) from time to time. Any details you provide when entering such competition will only be used for communicating with you and for no other purpose.
"Personal Data" is data that identifies you or can be used to identify or contact you and may include your name, address, email address, user IP addresses (in circumstances where they have not been deleted or anonymised), telephone number, birth date and billing and credit card information. Such information is only collected from you if you voluntarily submit it to us and where you provide more information than is required by SFI for the uses of Personal Data referred to in this Statement, SFI will delete such data.
"Non-Personal Data" may consist of statistical and other analytical information collected on an aggregate basis of all visitors to our website. This Non-Personal Data comprises information that cannot be used to identify or contact you, such as demographic information regarding, for example, user IP addresses where they have been anonymised, browser types and other anonymous statistical data involving the use of our website.