Privacy Policy

LAST UPDATE: March 29, 2021

The following Privacy Policy summarizes the various ways that Religion News Service LLC (“RNS,” “we” or “our) treats the information you provide while using religionnews.com, as well as all related online services and web pages that post, specifically reference, and incorporate this Privacy Policy (collectively, the “Website”) whether accessed via computer, mobile device or other device (collectively, “Device”). It is our goal to bring you information that is tailored to your individual needs and, at the same time, protect your privacy.

If you cannot agree with the terms and conditions of this Privacy Policy, please do not use the Website.

This Privacy Policy does not address, and we are not responsible for, the privacy, information, or other practices of any third parties, including any third party operating any site or web property (including, without limitation, any application) that is available through this Website or to which this Website contains a link. The availability of, or inclusion of a link to, any such site or property on this Website does not imply endorsement of it by us or by our affiliates.

In addition to reviewing this Privacy Policy, please read our User Agreement. Your use of the Website constitutes agreement to its terms and conditions as well.

This Privacy Policy may be modified from time to time; the date of the most recent revisions will appear on this page, so check back often. Continued access of the Website by you will constitute your acceptance of any changes or revisions to the Privacy Policy.

1. CONSENT

Consent to Data Collection and Processing

You hereby agree with and consent to the collection and processing of your personal information as described in this Privacy Policy.

Consent to International Data Transfers

Your personal information may be collected, processed and stored by RNS or our service providers in the United States and other countries where such servers reside. Please be aware that the privacy protections and legal requirements, including the rights of authorities to access your personal information, in some of these countries may not be equivalent to those in your country. You hereby agree with and consent to the transfer of your personal data to the United States and other countries where RNS operates.

Withdrawal of Consent

You have the right, at any time, to withdraw your consent to RNS’s collection and processing of your information, or to the transfer of your personal data to the United States and other countries where RNS operates. You may withdraw your consent by emailing RNS at [email protected]

2. COLLECTION AND USE OF PERSONAL INFORMATION

The Website generally collects personally identifying information with your specific knowledge and consent. For instance, when you enter a sweepstakes or contest, complete a survey, make a purchase, subscribe to our publication(s), or register for any portion of our services, you are asked to provide information such as your e-mail address, name or phone number. Optional information such as your age or gender may also be requested.

The categories of information that RNS collects about you may include, but are not limited to:

• Contact information (such as name, address, city, state and ZIP code, age or date of birth, occupation, social security number, email address and telephone number);

• Payment information (such as your bank account information, credit card number, debit card number, bank or donor account, CVV code, expiration date, and payment history);

• Information about your connected Devices and how you interact with our Website (such as IP address, browser type, unique device identifier, cookie data, and associated identifying and usage information);

• Demographic information (such as gender, date of birth, marital status, and household composition);

• Marketing profile information (such as when you plan to purchase a RNS product);

• Photographs and videos such as those that you may submit for contests, sweepstakes and social sharing;

• Social Security Number (in limited circumstances RNS may collect SSN, for example if you win a sweepstakes or receive compensation that must be reported for government tax purposes);

• Donor information (name, address, phone number, and email address); and

• The kind of RNS product or service you purchased.

As you navigate around this Website, certain information can be passively collected (that is, gathered without you actively providing the information), using various technologies. We passively collect and use information in a variety of ways, including:

• Through your browser: Certain information is collected by most browsers, such as your Media Access Control (MAC) address, computer type (Windows or Macintosh), screen resolution, operating system version, and Internet browser type and version. We may collect similar information, such as your device type and identifier, if you access this Website through a mobile Device.

• Cookies: See Section III below.

• Pixel tags, web beacons, clear GIFs, or other similar technologies: These may be used in connection with some Website pages to, among other things, track the actions of Website users and compile statistics about Website usage and response rates.

• IP Address: Your IP Address is a number that is automatically assigned to the computer that you are using by your Internet Service Provider. An IP Address is identified and logged automatically in our server log files whenever a user visits this Website, along with the time of the visit and the page(s) that were visited. Collecting IP Addresses is standard practice on the Internet and is done automatically by many web sites. We use IP Addresses for purposes such as calculating Website usage levels, helping diagnose server problems, and administering this Website.

• Device Information: We may collect information about your Device, such as a unique Device identifier.

• Do Not Track Requests: Your selection of the “Do Not Track” option provided by your browser may not have any effect on our collection of cookie information for analytic and internal purposes. The only way to completely opt out of the collection of any information through cookies or other tracking technology is to actively management the settings on your browser or Device to delete and disable cookies and other tracking/recording tools. Please note, depending on your type of Device or browser, it may not be possible to delete or disable all tracking mechanisms on your Device.

We permit third-party advertising partners to use the foregoing tracking technologies to collect information about your browsing activities over time and across different websites when you use the Website. For example, we use advertising services providing by third-party ad partners, such as Google, to market our service to you on other websites and online services. Through a process called “retargeting,” each service places a cookie on your browser when you visit the Website so that they can identify you and serve you ads on other sites around the web based on your browsing activity. To avoid use of this information for advertising by these third-party ad partners, you can change your browser settings to reject cookies or to notify you when cookies are set and you could select the Do Not Track option on your browser, though we have no control over and cannot confirm whether these third-party ad partners honor the Do Not Track browser signal. Additionally, many advertising companies are members of the NAI or DAA and/or provide opt-outs on those industry pages at networkadvertising.org/choices or aboutads.info/choices.

We utilize Google Analytics on the Website. Google Analytics is a website analysis service provided by Google, Inc. (“Google”). Google utilizes the data collected to track and examine the use of this Website, to prepare reports on its activities and share them with other Google services. Google may use the data collected to contextualize and personalize the ads of its own advertising network. For more information on Google’s Privacy Policy go to policies.google.com/privacy. Users can opt-out of Google Analytics tracking at developers.google.com/analytics/devguides/collection/analyticsjs/user-opt-out.

We, along with third-party vendors such as Google use first-party cookies (such as the Google Analytics cookies) and third-party cookies to compile data regarding user interactions with ad impressions and other ad service functions as they relate to our website. Users can set preferences for how Google advertises to you using the Google Ad Settings page. Alternatively, you can opt out by visiting the Network Advertising Initiative Opt Out page or by using the Google Analytics Opt Out Browser add on.

Integrated Accounts and Social Media Information

We may implement applications or “widgets” from third party providers (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc.) that allow interaction, integration or content sharing with third party services. These widgets or applications may be visible on a page you visit on our Website or may require log-in through the third party provider’s service. The third party providing the widget or integration may offer controls for you to manage your interactions. Any interaction with a third party widget or application typically allows the third party to collect some information about you (whether through cookies, registration information or otherwise). These third parties may even track you when you do not interact with the widget. If you have engaged any of these third party service providers, their respective privacy policies will govern their tracking and collection of information. You should review these third party policies to understand these practices.

How We Use Information Provided By You

RNS uses personally identifying information you supply through the Website to provide you with the service you have requested. For example, if you subscribe to any of our publications, we may use your e-mail address to send you a confirmation notice and your mailing address to send you the publication. Similarly, if you enter an online sweepstakes, we will use this information to notify you if you are a winner. We may also use the information to communicate with you about new features, products or services, and/or to improve the services that we offer by tailoring them to your needs.

Unless otherwise specified on the Website or in this Privacy Policy, RNS may sell or share personally identifying information with our affiliates and with carefully selected companies who we think can offer you services and products of interest to you. If you do not wish to have your personally identifying information shared, write to us at the street address set forth at the end of this document. If you do not wish to receive future commercial communications from us by e-mail, simply follow the unsubscribe instructions contained within the e-mail. If you’ve registered on any part of the Website, please use the mechanism on the Website that allows you to change or update your member preferences or information, if available, to keep all such date accurate and up-to-date. Otherwise, contact our Privacy Policy Coordinator as described below with your changes.

We also allow access to our database by third parties that provide us with services, such as technical maintenance or forums and job search software, but only for the purpose of and to the extent necessary to provide those services. And if you choose to purchase items through features on the Website, we may forward your information to third parties for services such as credit card processing and order fulfillment. There are also times when you provide information about yourself to us in areas of the site that may be managed or participated in by third parties, such as auction services or shopping areas. In such cases, the information may be used by us and by such third party(ies), each pursuant to its own policies. We may also provide your information to our advertisers, so that they can serve ads to you that meet your needs or match your interests. While RNS will seek to require such third parties to follow appropriate privacy policies and will not authorize them to use this information except for the express purpose for which it is provided, RNS does not bear any responsibility for any actions or policies of third parties. We may also provide access to our database in order to cooperate with official investigations or legal proceedings, including, for example, in response to subpoenas, search warrants, court orders, or other legal process.

In addition, we reserve the right to use the information we collect about your computer, which may at times be able to identify you, for any lawful business purpose, including without limitation to help diagnose problems with our servers, to gather broad demographic information, and to otherwise administer our Website.

While your personally identifying information is protected as outlined above, we reserve the right to use, transfer, sell, and share aggregated, anonymous data about our users as a group for any business purpose, such as analyzing usage trends and seeking compatible advertisers and partners.

In addition, as our business changes, we may buy or sell various assets. In the event all or a portion of the assets owned or controlled by RNS, its parent or any subsidiary or affiliated entity are sold, assigned, transferred or acquired by another company, the information from and/or about our Website users may be among the transferred assets.

Finally, we may use any photographs, videos, and other content, information, or materials you upload to the Website in any medium, and for any purpose (including commercial purposes).

If you wish to opt-out of the sale of your personal information collected by RNS please CONTACT US using the section below.

In the preceding twelve (12) months, we have not sold any personal information.

3. COOKIES

You may have read about “cookies,” nuggets of information that are placed by a Website in a storage place on your own computer. We may use cookies to control the display of ads, to track usage patterns on the site, to deliver editorial content, and to record registration and personalization information. For example, if you register on any part of the Website and are given the option to save your user name and password on your computer, we can provide this convenience to you by placing a cookie on your computer. Our cookies may contain personally identifiable information and such cookies may be shared with our affiliates and other companies.

Some of our advertisers occasionally serve you cookies as well. We do not have control over cookies placed by advertisers.

We may also use advertising service vendors to help present advertisements on the Website. These vendors may use cookies, web beacons, or similar technologies to serve you advertisements tailored to interests you have shown by browsing on this and other sites you have visited, to determine whether you have seen a particular advertisement before and to avoid sending you duplicate advertisements. In doing so, these vendors may collect non-personal data such as your browser type, your operating system, Web pages visited, time of visits, content viewed, ads viewed, and other clickstream data. The use of cookies, web beacons, or similar technologies by these advertising service vendors is subject to their own privacy policies, not ours, and RNS disclaims all liability in connection therewith. If you do not want the benefits of these advertising cookies, you may be able to opt-out by visiting networkadvertising.org/optout_nonppii.asp.

If you don’t want any cookies, your Web browser likely includes an option that allows you to not accept them. However, if you set your browser to refuse cookies, some portions of the Website may not function properly.

4. GENERAL PRINCIPLES FOR THE PROCESSING OF PERSONAL INFORMATION

Personal information will be collected, stored, processed and transmitted in accordance with RNS’s established policies and applicable federal, state, local and foreign laws, rules and regulations.

The principles of RNS with respect to the processing of personal information are as follows: (1) personal information will be processed fairly and lawfully, (2) personal information will be collected for specified, explicit, and legitimate purposes and not further processed for incompatible purposes, (3) personal information collected by RNS will be adequate, relevant, and limited to what is necessary in relation to the purposes for which they are collected and processed, (4) personal information collected by RNS will be accurate and, where necessary, kept up to date to the best of our ability, (5) personal information collected by RNS will be retained as identifiable data for no longer than necessary to serve the purposes for which the personal information was collected, and (6) personal data will be processed in a manner that ensures appropriate security of the personal data, including protection against unauthorized or unlawful processing and against accidental loss, destruction or damage, using appropriate technical or organizational measures.

If RNS engages in the processing of personal information for purposes other than those specified in this Policy, RNS will provide notice of these changes, the purposes for which the personal information will be used, and the recipients of personal information.

5. INFORMATION SECURITY AND NOTIFICATION

RNS has implemented security measures designed to protect personal information provided by you against unauthorized access and use. Because no data transmission over the Internet is completely secure, and no system of physical or electronic security is impenetrable, RNS cannot guarantee the security of the information you send to us or the security of our servers or databases. In the unlikely event that we believe that the security of your information in our possession or control may have been compromised, we may seek to notify you in accordance with applicable law. If you have reason to believe that your interaction with us is no longer secure, please immediately notify us of the problem by contacting us.

6. THIRD PARTY SITES AND SERVICES

This Policy does not address, and we are not responsible for, the privacy, information, or other practices of any third parties, including any third party operating any site or web property (including, without limitation, any application) that is available through this Website or to which this Website contains a link. The availability of, or inclusion of a link to, any such site or property on this Website does not imply endorsement of it by us or by our affiliates.

Third parties may offer products and services on the Websites and collect information about you by requesting certain information necessary to provide a particular product or service (including, for example, insurance coverage for your RNS products or reports of insurance claims). RNS may also obtain certain information about its users from third party customer research groups (e.g., demographic information) which RNS uses to learn more about its customers. RNS does not control the policies and practices of third parties in relation to the use and disclosure of any information about users collected by third parties on the Website or in market research programs conducted by such third parties and any use or disclosure of such information by third parties is not governed by this Policy.

7. CHOICES AND ACCESS

We give you choices regarding our use and disclosure of your personal information. If you do not want to receive any information by email, regular mail or telephone calls, you may opt-out of further communications provided by RNS at any time by: (i) sending RNS an email at [email protected]; or (ii) writing to RNS at:

Religion News Service LLC, 30 Neff Hall, Columbia, MO 65211.

Please note that RNS can only comply with requests relating to email, regular mail or telephone communications provided by RNS. If you no longer wish to receive further information by email, regular mail or telephone from any third party, you will need to contact such third party directly to opt-out of further communications being provided to you. We will seek to comply with your request(s) as soon as reasonably practicable.

If applicable, and you would like to review, correct, update, or delete the personal information that you have provided via this Website, please contact us. We will try to comply with your request as soon as reasonably practicable.

8. ACCURACY

It is your responsibility to provide RNS with accurate personal information. Except as otherwise set forth in this Policy, RNS shall only use personal information in ways that are compatible with the purposes for which it was collected or subsequently authorized by you. To the extent necessary for these purposes, RNS shall take reasonable steps to ensure that personal information is accurate, complete, current and relevant to its intended use.

9. YOUR RIGHTS OVER YOUR INFORMATION

By law, you have a number of important rights. In summary, those include the following:

• fair processing of your personal data and transparency over how we use your personal data;

• access to your personal data and to certain other supplementary information that this privacy policy is already designed to address;

• require us to correct any mistakes in your information which we hold;

• require the erasure of personal data concerning you, in certain situations;

• receive the personal data concerning you that you have provided to us, in a structured, commonly used and machine readable format, and have the right to transmit that data to a third party, in certain situations;

• object at any time to processing of personal data concerning you for direct marketing;

• object to decisions being taken by automated means that produce legal effects concerning you or similarly significantly affect you; and

• object in certain other situations to our continued processing of your personal data.

If you would like to exercise any of these rights, please email, call, or write to us with the following: (1) enough information to identify you; (2) proof of your identity and address; and (3) the information to which your request relates.

California Privacy Rights

The California Consumer Privacy Act (the “CCPA”) grants users of our Website that are California residents certain rights in regards to our collection of personal information. These rights include:

• The right to request the disclosures of (1) what personal information has been collected; (2) the categories of sources from which the personal information was collected; (3) the business or commercial purpose for collection or selling personal information; (4) the categories of third parties with whom the business shares personal information; and (5) the specific pieces of personal information RNS has collected;

• The right to request the deletion of their personal information that has been collected; and

• The right to opt-out of the sale of their personal information.

Under the CCPA, a data subject may only make a personal information request twice in a 12-month period. RNS will respond to such personal information request within 45 days of receiving the personal information request.

Additionally, if you are a California resident, you have the right to request information from RNS regarding the manner in which RNS shares certain categories of your personal information with third parties, for the third parties’ direct marketing purposes. California law provides that you have the right to submit a request to RNS at its designated address and receive the following information:

• The categories of information RNS disclosed to third parties for the third parties’ direct marketing purposes during the preceding calendar year; and

• The names and address of third parties that received such information, or if the nature of their business cannot be determined from the name, then examples of the products or services marketed.

You are entitled to receive a copy of this information in a standardized format and the information will not be specific to you individually. You may make such a request by calling 844-767-6397.

Exercising Your Rights

To exercise your rights as described herein, you may submit a verifiable consumer request to us (as described above) by either contacting us via the contact methods provided in the CONTACTING US section below. RNS will not discriminate in any way against any users of the Website that exercise their rights provided by law.

10. RETENTION PERIOD

We retain your personal information for the period necessary to fulfill the purposes outlined in this Policy, unless a longer retention period is required or allowed by law or to otherwise fulfill a legal obligation.

11. SECURITY

RNS has implemented security measures designed to protect personal information provided by you against unauthorized access and use. RNS also uses commercially reasonable efforts to establish secure connections with your web browser for any transactions conducted online using a credit card or other financial information you may provide to RNS. Please be aware, however, that no data transmission over the Internet is 100% secure and any information disclosed online can potentially be collected and used by parties other than the intended recipient. If you have reason to believe that your interaction with us is no longer secure, please immediately notify us of the problem by contacting us.

12. USE OF SITE BY MINORS

We do not intentionally collect information from individuals under the age of 13. No one under age 13 is allowed to provide any personal information or use our public discussion areas, forums or chats. Minors between the age of 13 and 17 must get the permission of their parent(s) or legal guardian(s) before making purchases, including subscriptions, on this Website.

If your children disclose information about themselves in publicly accessible areas of the Website, they may get unsolicited messages from other parties. Accordingly, you should tell them not to do so.

If you’re worried about your children’s activities or their privacy on our site, we encourage you to contact our Privacy Policy Coordinator as described below.

13. COMPLIANCE WITH LOCAL LAWS

This Policy is meant to guide RNS with respect to personal information collected from or about you at this Website. While this Policy applies to personal information generally, the local laws, rules and regulations of jurisdictions that are applicable to RNS (“Local Laws”) may require standards which are stricter than this Policy and, in such event, RNS will comply with applicable Local Laws. Specific privacy policies may be adopted to address the specific privacy requirements of particular jurisdictions. All the information you provide may be transferred or accessed by entities around the world as described in this Policy. Your personal information may be stored and processed in any country where we have facilities or service providers, and by using our Website or by providing consent to us (where required by law), you specifically acknowledge and consent to the transfer of information to countries outside of your country of residence, including to the United States, which may provide for different data protection rules, and a lower standard of required protection, than in your country. Irrespective of which country your personal data is transferred, we would only share your personal data under a ‘need to know’ basis. In these circumstances we will, as required by applicable law, ensure that your privacy rights are adequately protected by organizational, technical, contractual and/or other lawful means.

14. UPDATES TO THIS PRIVACY POLICY

We may change this Policy. Please review the LAST UPDATE legend at the top of this page to see when this Policy was last revised. Any changes to this Policy will become effective when we post the revised Policy on this Website. Your use of this Website following these changes means that you accept the revised Policy.

15. COMPLIANCE

RNS will use a self-assessment approach to verify compliance with this Policy and periodically verify that the Policy is accurate, comprehensive for the information intended to be covered, prominently displayed, implemented and accessible.

If you believe that your personal information has been processed or disclosed in violation of this Policy, RNS encourages you to raise any concerns using the contact information provided in this Policy. RNS will investigate and attempt to resolve any complaints and disputes regarding use and disclosure of personal information.

16. YOUR RIGHT TO COMPLAIN

If you have a complaint as to our use of your information, you may file a complaint with us, the California Attorney General, any other governmental agency, and/or a judicial body.

A complaint may be submitted directly to RNS by contacting the RNS Privacy Policy Coordinator as follows:

Religion News Service LLC

30 Neff Hall

Columbia, MO 65211 USA

[email protected]