Data protection and security are important to us, as is your trust in our services. The International Council of Ophthalmology (“ICO“, “we“, “us“) is committed to collect and process your personal data responsibly and in compliance with applicable data protection laws. We use the word “data” interchangeably with “personal data“.
This Online Privacy Notice describes what we do with your data when you use our website www.icoph.org, including any subsites thereof (collectively “website“, “websites“).
If you disclose data to us or share data with us about other individuals, we assume that you are authorized to do so and that the relevant data is accurate. When you share data about others with us, you confirm that. Please make sure to inform these individuals about this Privacy Notice.
This Privacy Notice is in alignment with the EU General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR“), the Swiss Data Protection Act (“DPA“) and the revised Swiss Data Protection Act (“revDPA“). However, the application of these laws depends on each individual case.
We process various categories of data. The main categories are the following:
In most cases, you provide the data set out in this Section to us. You are not obliged or required to disclose data except in certain cases, for example within the framework of legal obligations.
If you wish to enter into contracts with us or gain access to certain services and contents of our websites, you must also provide us with certain data, in particular master data, contract data and registration data. When using our websites, the processing of technical data is unavoidable.
As far as it is not unlawful, we may also collect data from public sources (for example the media or the internet, including social media) or receive data from other organizations that, e.g., are members of or close to the ICO, from public authorities and from other third parties (such as other medical organizations, contractual partners, internet analytics services, etc.).
The categories of personal data that we receive about you from third parties include, in particular, information from public registers, information that we receive in relation to administrative and legal proceedings, information in relation to your professional functions and activities, information about you in correspondence and meetings with third parties, credit information (where we conduct business with you in a personal capacity), information about you that persons associated with you share with us so that we can conclude or perform contracts with you or involving you (for example references, your delivery address)
We process your data for the purposes explained below. These purposes and their objectives represent interests of us and potentially interests of third parties.
We process your data for purposes related to communication, in particular in relation to contacting or responding to you in case of queries. For this purpose, we use communication data and master data, as well as registration data in relation to services that you use based on prior registration. We keep this data to document our communication with you, for quality assurance and for follow-up inquiries.
We process data for the conclusion, administration, and performance of contractual relationships, especially contract data, communication data and master data. As part of performing contractual relationships, we may include involving third parties such as payment providers and other organizations that are members of or close to the ICO.
We process data for marketing purposes and relationship management, for example to send you newsletters and other informational communications on events etc., as well as the general management of ICO Memberships and registered users of our websites. For these purposes, we mostly process master data, communication data, contact data and registration data.
We process data for the purpose of regulatory compliance as well as the optimization of our internal processes such as risk management, corporate governance, and further administrative purposes (e.g., management of our IT infrastructure). Further purposes may apply. These further purposes include safeguarding other applicable legitimate interests.
Where we ask for your consent to our processing activities, we will inform you separately about the relevant processing purposes. You may withdraw your consent at any time with effect for the future by providing us notice by sending an e-mail to us. Where you have a user account, you may also withdraw consent or contact us through the relevant website and contact address thereof. Once we have received notification of withdrawal of consent, we will no longer process your information for the purpose(s) you consented to, unless we have another legal basis to do so. Withdrawal of consent does not affect the lawfulness of the processing based on the consent prior to withdrawal.
Where we do not ask for consent, the processing of your personal data relies on the requirement of the processing for initiating or performing a contract with you (or the entity you represent, e.g. association or employer) or on our or a third-party’s legitimate interest in the particular processing. In particular, pursuant of the processing purposes as set out in Section 3 and in implementing related measures. Our legitimate interests also include compliance with legal regulations, insofar as this is not already recognized as a legal basis by applicable data protection law (for example in the case of the GDPR, the laws in the EEA and in the case of the DPA and the revDPA, Swiss law).
Where we receive sensitive personal data (for example health data or biometric data for identification purposes), we may process your data on other legal basis, for example, in the event of a dispute, as required in relation to a potential litigation or for the enforcement or defense of legal claims. Where another legal basis applies, we will communicate to you separately as necessary.
In relation to our websites and the services offered on them, our legal obligations or otherwise with protecting our legitimate interests and the other purposes set out in Section 3, we may disclose your personal data to third parties in Switzerland and abroad in certain scenarios. These third parties process your data on our behalf or as joint controllers with us or receive data about you from us as separate controllers.
These third parties may be organizations within the ICO, organizations we partner with in the context of our educational services, exams and fellowships (e.g., foundations, examiners and academic institutions) as well as service providers, e.g., IT providers, payment services and event managers.
We may disclose personal data to the authorities, i.e. agencies, courts, etc. in Switzerland and abroad if we are legally obliged or entitled to make such disclosures or if it appears necessary to protect our interests.
In cases that follow from the processing purposes set out in Section 3, we may interact with other third parties, such as references provided by you.
All these categories of recipients may involve third parties, and your data may also be disclosed to them. We can restrict the processing by certain third parties (for example IT providers), but not by others (for example authorities, banks, etc.).
As explained in Section 5 above, we disclose data to other parties. These are not all located in Switzerland or Europe. Furthermore, we may process data in any other country in the world in certain cases.
If a recipient is located in a country without adequate statutory data protection, we require the recipient to undertake to comply with data protection. For this purpose, we use the revised European Commission’s standard contractual clauses, unless the recipient is subject to a legally accepted set of rules to ensure data protection and unless we cannot rely on an exception. An exception may apply for example in case of legal proceedings abroad, but also in cases of overriding public interest or if the performance of a contract requires disclosure, if you have consented or if data has been made available generally by you and you have not objected against the processing.
We process your data for as long as our processing purposes, the legal retention periods and our legitimate interests require it or storage is a technical requirement. You will find further information on the respective storage and processing periods for the individual data categories in Section 2. If there are no contrary legal or contractual obligations, we will delete or anonymize your data once the storage or processing period has expired as part of our usual processes.
We take appropriate security measures in order to maintain the required security of your personal data and ensure its confidentiality, integrity and availability, and to protect it against unauthorized or unlawful processing, and to mitigate the risk of loss, accidental alteration, unauthorized disclosure or access.
Applicable data protection laws grant you the right to object to the processing of your data in some circumstances, in particular for direct marketing purposes, for profiling carried out for direct marketing purposes and for other legitimate interests in processing.
To help you control the processing of your personal data, you have the following rights in relation to our data processing, depending on the applicable data protection law:
– The right to request information from us as to whether and what data we process from you;
– The right to have us correct data if it is inaccurate;
– The right to request erasure of data;
– The right to request that we provide certain personal data in a commonly used electronic format or transfer it to another controller;
– The right to withdraw consent, where our processing is based on your consent;
– The right to receive, upon request, further information that is helpful for the exercise of these rights.
If you wish to exercise the above-mentioned rights in relation to us, please contact us in writing, or by e-mail according to our contact details in Section 1. In order for us to be able to prevent misuse, we will need to identify you (for example by means of a copy of your ID card, unless identification is not possible otherwise).
Please note that conditions, exceptions or restrictions apply to these rights under applicable data protection law (for example to protect third parties or trade secrets). We will inform you accordingly where applicable.
If you do not agree with the way, we handle your rights or with our data protection practices, please let us know. If you are located in the EEA, the United Kingdom or in Switzerland, you also have the right to lodge a complaint with the competent data protection supervisory authority in your country.
We use various techniques on our website that allow us and third parties engaged by us to recognize you during your use of our website, and possibly to track you across several visits.
To ensure the functionality of the website, we wish to distinguish access by you (through your system) from access by other users. We do not intend to determine your identity, even where possible for us or third parties hired by us by combining tracking information with different data categories. However, the technologies we use are designed in such a way that you are recognized as an individual visitor each time you access the website, for example by our server (or third-party servers) that assign a specific identification number to you or your browser (a so-called “cookie”).
We distinguish the following categories of «cookies» (including other technologies such as fingerprinting):
Necessary cookies: Some cookies are necessary for the functioning of the website or for certain features. For example, they ensure that you can move between pages without losing information that was entered in a form. They also ensure that you stay logged in. These cookies exist temporarily only («session cookies»). If you block them, the website may not work properly. Other cookies are necessary for the server to store options or information (which you have entered) beyond a session (i.e. a visit to the website) if you use this function (for example language settings, consents, automatic login functionality, etc.). These cookies have an expiration date of up to twenty-four months.
Depending on the purpose of these technologies, we may ask for consent before they are used. You can set your browser to block, deceive or delete certain types of cookies or alternative technologies. You can also add software to your browser that blocks certain third-party tracking.
One of the services we use is Google Analytics, provided by Google Ireland Ltd. (located in Ireland) which acts as our processor. Google Ireland relies on Google LLC (located in the United States) as its sub-processor (both “Google“). Google collects information about the behavior of visitors to our website (duration, page views, geographic region of access, etc.) by using cookies and on this basis creates reports for us about the use of our website. We have configured the service so that the IP addresses of visitors are shortened by Google in Europe before forwarding them to the United States. Thereby, they cannot be traced back. We have turned off the “Data sharing” option and the “Signals” option. Although we can assume that the information we share with Google is not personal data for Google, it may be possible for Google to draw conclusions about the identity of visitors based on the data collected, create personal profiles and link this data with the Google accounts of these individuals for its own purposes. In any event, if you consent to the use of Google Analytics, you expressly consent to any such processing, including the transfer of your personal data (in particular website and app usage, device information and unique IDs) to the United States and other countries, where it may be accessible to authorities not subject to adequate privacy protections. Information about data protection with Google Analytics can be found here and if you have a Google account, you can find more details about Google’s processing here .
We may operate pages and other online presences on social networks and other platforms operated by third parties (such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn) and collect data about you. We receive this data from you and from the platforms when you interact with us through our online presence (for example when you communicate with us, comment on our content or visit our online presence). At the same time, the platforms analyze your use of our online presences and combine this data with other data they have about you. They also process this data for their own purposes, in particular for marketing and market research purposes (for example to personalize advertising) and to manage their platforms (for example what content they show you). To that end, they act as separate controllers.
Certain pages of our websites contain social plugins (hereinafter “plugins“). The plugins are marked with a logo or a text note. When users call up a page of our website that contains such a plugin, the user’s browser establishes a direct connection with the networks’ servers. The networks transmit the content of the plugin directly to the browsers, which integrate them into the websites. If users are logged into one of the networks, it is possible that the networks assign the visit to their account to the corresponding network. When users interact with the plugins, the browser transmits the corresponding information to the networks. The networks then assign the information to the corresponding account.
For further information on the processing of the platform operators, please refer to the privacy information of the relevant platforms. There you can also find out about the countries where they process your data, your rights of access and erasure of data and other rights and how you can exercise them.
This Privacy Notice is not part of a contract with you. We can change this Privacy Notice at any time. The version published on this website is the current version.
Last update: [30 Dec 2022]