• Kristin Dispenza

Does Your Website Need a Privacy Policy?

As more and more privacy laws are implemented worldwide, organizations face greater responsibilities in disclosing how they collect and use data.

Data collection may not sound like something your organization does. But data collection can include:

  • Users submitting their email address.

  • People posting comments (which record names, IP addresses, and/or other identifiable information).

  • Running website analytics on your site visitors and their behavior.

  • Using advertising plug-ins.

  • Accepting payment for goods, services, dues, etc.

For any of the above, it is required that you post a privacy policy.

Your privacy policy should explain what kinds of personal information you gather from website visitors, how you use this information, and how you keep it safe. The policy should be detailed and written in clear language. To understand the data protections associated with platforms or services you are using, work with your website designer or, if you use software such as Wix or Wordpress, those companies typically provide wording you can use that explains how their platforms protect data. Third party services you may use, such as Google Analytics or Adsense, also provide their customers with explanations of how cookies are used to track user behavior and collect personal information.

If it seems daunting to try to gather all the pieces of information yourself, services are available online that allow you to automatically generate a privacy policy. If you collect extensive kinds of data on site visitors, you may find it helpful to consult a legal expert. Once you have your policy written and posted, don’t forget to create a visible link to it (usually in the site’s footer).



Did You Know? A privacy policy is not a disclaimer. To learn about disclaimers (which are statements placed on your website to limit liability related to people's use of the site's information), check out our news item, “Best Practices for Website Disclaimers.”

For more information on best practices when it comes to building your organization’s website, contact us today!

*This article is not intended as legal advice. We recommend that you seek legal advice to assist you in the creation of your privacy policy.