We are committed to protecting your personal information and being transparent about what we do with it, no matter how you interact with us. That’s whether you want to work, volunteer or advocate for us, donate, buy goods or use our services, want information, training or want to learn more about what we do.
We are committed to using your personal information in accordance with our responsibilities. We are required to provide you with the information in this Privacy Notice under applicable law which includes:
- the Data Protection Act 1998, which will be replaced by the General Data Protection Regulation (EU) 2016/679 from 25 May 2018
- the Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003.
We won’t do anything with your information you wouldn’t reasonably expect.
Processing of your personal information is carried out by or on behalf of the British Red Cross Society, incorporated by Royal Charter 1908; registered as a charity in England and Wales (220949), Scotland (SC037738) and the Isle of Man (0752); and Britcross Ltd registered as a company in England and Wales (00932598) (collectively ‘British Red Cross’).
This notice, together with our website terms and conditions and our cookies policy tells you about how we collect, use and protect your personal information.
If you have any queries about our Privacy Notice, please get in touch with our Information Governance team:
How and when we collect information about you
When you directly give us information
We may collect and store information about you when you interact with us. For example, this could be when you:
support our work through a donation
fundraise on our behalf
register for an event
tell us your story
buy goods from our online shop
submit an enquiry
register for or use our services
participate in our training
give us feedback
make a complaint
use one of our apps
apply for a job
register as a volunteer
enter into a contract with us
are captured by CCTV recording.
When you indirectly give us information
When you interact with us on social media platforms such as Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter or LinkedIn we may also obtain some personal information about you. The information we receive will depend on the privacy preferences you have set on each platform and the privacy policies of each platform. To change your settings on these platforms, please refer to their privacy notices.
We may obtain information about your visit to our site, for example the pages you visit and how you navigate the site, by using cookies. Please visit our cookies policy for information on this.
What information we might collect
When you engage with us by phone, mail, in person or online, we may collect information about you (referred to in this Privacy Notice as 'personal information'). This may include your name, address, email address, telephone number, date of birth, job title and details of your education and career, why you are interested in British Red Cross, and other information relating to you personally which you may choose to provide to us.
Data protection law recognises that certain types of personal information are more sensitive. This is known as 'sensitive' or 'special category' personal information and covers information revealing racial or ethnic origin, religious or philosophical beliefs and political opinions, trade union membership, genetic or biometric data, information concerning health or data concerning a person's sex life or sexual orientation.
Sensitive information will only be collected where necessary, for example, we may need to collect health information from you when you register for a challenge event or to deliver a community service as a volunteer or member of staff. Clear notices will be provided at the time we collect this information, stating what information is needed, and why.
With your explicit consent, we may also collect sensitive personal information if you choose to tell us about your experiences relating to our services for use in a case study.
If you're 16 or under
If you're aged 16 or under, you must get your parent/guardian’s permission before you provide any personal information to us.
How and why we use your information
We will use your personal information for the following purposes:
- Donation processing: We will process personal information you provide in order to administer any one-off or on-going donations you make and claim Gift Aid.
- Responding to a request: If you contact us with a query, we may use your personal information to provide you with a response.
- Fundraising or direct marketing: We will only send you marketing information by email, SMS, or phone if you have given us specific consent. If you withdraw your consent and then subsequently opt in to receive marketing information again, then your most recent preference may supersede.
If you have responded to a letter of appeal, you may also receive fundraising mail, which you can opt out of at any time by:
Calling us on Freephone 0800 2 800 491
By email to email@example.com
Writing to FREEPOST RED CROSS (no stamp or address needed)
- Monitoring and Evaluating: We may use your information in order to improve current and future delivery of our services.
- Processing an application to work with us: We may process your information if you send or fill in an application form or send us your CV or details in respect of an opportunity to work with us in order to evaluate your suitability and respond to you.
- Transactional purposes: We will need to use your personal information in order to carry out our obligations arising from any contracts entered into between you and us for goods or services, for example, processing your order and payment for a product from our online shop.
- Providing and developing our website: We may use your personal information to help provide you with access to our website, personalise your experience, and improve and develop it further.
- Administration: We may use your personal information to record and deal with a complaint, record a request not to receive further marking information, record what our volunteers have done for us, and for other essential internal record keeping purposes.
- Prevention of crime: We may record your image on CCTV which we use to prevent crime and keep our people and the public safe.
- Protecting your vital interests: We may process your personal information where we reasonably think that there is a risk of serious harm or abuse to you or someone else.
- Market research and surveys: We may invite you to participate in surveys or market research to help us improve our website, fundraising, services and strategic development. Participation is always voluntary and no individuals will be identified as a result of this research, unless you consent to us publishing your feedback.
- Legal, regulatory and tax compliance: Where required we are subject to a legal obligation, we may process your personal information to fulfil that obligation.
- Profiling and analysis: We may occasionally for the purposes of our legitimate interests use your personal information to conduct profiling of our supporters or potential supporters. This will help us target communications in a more focused, efficient and cost effective way, helping us reduce the chances of supporters and potential supporters receiving inappropriate or irrelevant communications. You can object to such use of your personal information for profiling at any time by contacting us at the details set out at the end of this Privacy Notice.
Our profiling and analysis activities can be broken into five categories:
- Data matching
We may combine the personal information you have given us with data obtained from external sources, such as the Office for National Statistics, in infer the likely social, demographic and financial characteristics, so we can tailor our communications and services to better meet your needs or the needs of others like you based on the insight we gain from the profile we build. We will not use the results of this data matching activity in a way that intrudes on your privacy or your previously expressed privacy preferences.
We conduct analysis of supporters by group, post code or particular area where supporters may be based. This is to ensure that campaigns or mailings are sent to those who will be most interested or likely to respond. This type of activity is not aimed at identifying specific individuals to target, but rather many individuals who may fall within a certain segment of supporters.
- Major donor analysis
We may carry out research to determine whether an individual could be a potential major donor. We may use publicly available information from third party sources such as Google; Companies House; published biographies and publicly available LinkedIn profiles.
The type of information we collect can include:
areas of interest
history of giving to us and others
how the individual is connected with us and others
public information on any philanthropic activities
We may also research public records of an individual's trusteeships, as well as companies they manage or are directors of.
Occasionally we may also research any key networks that the individual is publically known to be a member of, such as on the board of a not for profit or philanthropic body which may have relevance to our activities.
- High value event planning
We may also use profiling to produce short biographies of people who are due to meet with our leadership or attend an event that we may be hosting.
This helps our people to understand more about those we engage with, and their interests or connection to us.
- Ethical screening and minimising risk
As a registered charity, we are subject to a number of legal and regulatory obligations and standards. The public naturally expect charities to operate in an ethical manner and this is integral to developing high levels of trust and demonstrating our integrity.
This means that we may carry out appropriate due diligence of donors, check donations and implement robust financial controls to help protect the charity from abuse, fraud and/or money laundering.
We may carry out background checks and due diligence on potential donors or anyone planning on making a significant donation or gift before we can accept it.
We may also ethically screen supporters to minimise risk of creating an association with an individual or group that conflicts with the standards we have set out in our overarching ethical policy.
Who do we share your information with?
We will only use your information for the purposes for which it was obtained. We will not, under any circumstances, sell or share your personal information with any third party for their own purposes, and you will not receive marketing from any other companies, charities or other organisations as a result of giving your details to us.
We will only share your data for the following purposes:
- Third party suppliers: We may need to share your information with data hosting providers or service providers who help us to deliver our services, projects, or fundraising activities and appeals. These providers will only act under our instruction and are subject to pre-contract scrutiny and contractual obligations containing strict data protection clauses.
- Where legally required: We will comply with requests where disclosure is required by law, for example, we may disclose your personal information to the government for tax investigation purposes, or to law enforcement agencies for the prevention and detection of crime. We may also share your information with the emergency services if we reasonably think there is a risk of serious harm or abuse to you or someone else.
We always aim to ensure that personal information is only used by those third parties for lawful purposes in accordance with this Privacy Notice.
How we protect your information
We use technical and corporate organisational safeguards to ensure that your personal information is secure. We limit access to information on a need-to-know basis and take appropriate measures to ensure that our people are aware that such information is only used in accordance with this Privacy Notice.
We undertake regular reviews of who has access to information that we hold to ensure that your information is only accessible by appropriately trained staff, volunteers and contractors.
Our online forms are always encrypted and our network is protected and routinely monitored.
If you use your credit or debit card to donate to us, buy something or make a booking online, we pass your card details securely to our payment processing partners.
We do this in accordance with industry standards and do not store the details on our website.
However, please be aware that there are always inherent risks in sending information by public networks or using public computers and we cannot 100% guarantee the security of data (including personal information) disclosed or transmitted over public networks.
We understand that additional care may be needed when we collect and process the personal information of vulnerable supporters and volunteers. In recognition of this, we observe good practice guideline in our interactions with vulnerable people
How long will we keep your information?
We will keep your personal information in respect of financial transactions for as long as the law requires us to for tax or accounting purposes (which may be up to six years after a particular transaction).
If you request that we stop processing your personal information for the purpose of marketing we may in some instances need to add your details to a suppression file to enable us to comply with your request not to be contacted.
In respect of other personal information, we will retain it for no longer than necessary for the purposes for which it was collected, taking into account guidance issued by the Information Commissioner’s Office.
International transfers of information
We may, on occasion decide to use the services of a supplier outside the European Economic Area (EEA), which means that your personal information is transferred, processed and stored outside the EEA. You should be aware that, in general, legal protection for personal information in countries outside the EEA may not be equivalent to the level of protection provided in the EEA.
However we take steps to put in place suitable safeguards to protect your personal information when processed by the supplier such as entering into the European Commission approved standard contractual clauses. By submitting your personal information to us you agree to this transfer, storing or processing at a location outside the EEA.
Your rights to your personal information
Data protection legislation gives you the right to request access to personal information about you which is processed by the British Red Cross and to have any inaccuracies corrected.
You also have the right to ask us to erase your personal information, ask us to restrict our processing of your personal information or to object to our processing of your personal information.
If you wish to exercise these rights, please complete our subject access request form (PDF) and send it along with copies of two separate identification documents which provide photo identification and confirm your address, such as a passport, driving licence, or utility bill.
Please also provide any additional information that is relevant to the nature of your contact with us, as this will help us to locate your records.
You can send us the documents via post to:
Data Protection Officer
British Red Cross, 44 Moorfields, London EC2Y 9AL
Alternatively email a copy of the form along with scans or photos of your two forms of identification to: firstname.lastname@example.org
We will respond within 40 days, on receipt of your written request and copies of your identification documents.
We reserve the right to charge a fee of £10 to process the request.
How to make a complaint or raise a concern
If you would like more information, or have any questions about this policy, to make a formal complaint about our approach to data protection or raise privacy concerns please contact the Information Governance Team:
If you would like to make a complaint in relation to how we have handled your personal information, please follow our complaints procedure. If you are not happy with the response you receive, then you can raise your concern with the relevant statutory body:
Information Commissioner’s Office:
Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF
Alternatively you can visit their website.
We are registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office as a Data Controller under number Z5379882.
Changes to our Privacy Notice
Our Privacy Notice may change from time to time, so please check this page occasionally to see if we have included any updates or changes, and that you are happy with them.
(Last updated: 26 February 2018)