IGS Privacy Policy and Usage

(Updated September 2021)

We are committed to protecting the privacy of our members and non-members whenever they use our website or affiliated channels, including email newsletters and social media.

IGS Privacy Policy (“Policy”) provides information on how the International Geosynthetics Society, its staff and officers, and any third party providers collect, use, secure, transfer and share your information. We comply with relevant data protection legislation where our members are located.

This Policy explains how we collect personal data, how we use it and who we might share it with.

We may review this policy from time to time without prior notice, so please do check for updates. If you have any questions about this privacy policy, or the way we process personal data, please contact us.

By using our website, you hereby consent to our Privacy Policy and agree to its terms. See also: IGS.org Terms and Conditions.

Privacy Policy

How do we collect information from you?

We collect information from you in the following ways:

  • through our website, including forms and cookies
  • email, post, fax and mail correspondence with us
  • contact via phone
  • our social media channels
  • application and request forms by post
  • in-person contacts with IGS employees, officers and members
  • information we gathered via events, and
  • information we receive from external third parties.

Each time we collect personal data from you direct we will include a link to this privacy policy so you understand how your data might be used. We will also give you the opportunity to opt-in or out of certain data uses by us.

How you send information to us is your choice but please be aware that some methods are not secure. If you are unsure how you should send confidential data to us please contact us and we may be able to help you.

What type of information do we collect from you?

We will collect different kinds of information from you depending on our relationship with you:

  • we will collect the data we need to administer memberships. Typically this will include personal details such as your name, IGS membership number, membership type, gender, date of birth, postal and email addresses, telephone number and employment
  • we will collect the information we need to provide you with the products and services you have requested from us, for example subscriptions to publications
  • we will collect information we need to arrange events and the administration of events
  • if you apply to represent IGS as an officer or similar post, we will collect the data required to process your candidature
  • if you apply for a contract at IGS or as a supplier of any sort, we will collect the necessary data to process your application
  • if we receive a complaint or query from members, we will collect the data required to consider the complaint or query effectively.

How do we use your data?

We will use your data in accordance with the law.

We will carry out the following activities only with your opt-in consent:

  • sharing your contact details with third parties for marketing purposes
  • using your contact details to send you marketing data, if you haven’t bought a product or service from us
  • using your contact details to tell you about membership opportunities. For example, if you are a student we may send you details about becoming a full member of IGS.

We will use your data in the following ways unless you opt-out or object:

  • we may use your contact details to send you marketing messages, if you have bought a product or service from us. This includes subscriptions and registering as a member.
  • sharing your data with our partner charity the IGS Foundation.
  • we may use your contact details to send you surveys and other research material carried out in the legitimate interest of IGS (e.g. to improve the services we offer). We may also contact you about other types of research such as our Sustainability Survey.

Should you provide personal data to us, there are circumstances when we will use it whether you provide us with consent or not. The below lists some of the ways we may use data without your consent:

  • we will use the personal data of members to administer their accounts and membership
  • we will send information to members about the running of IGS
  • we will use member data to maintain the IGS member directory (accessible only by members)
  • we will share personal data with a third party if required to do so by law
  • if you make a complaint we will process your data to address any concerns effectively
  • if you contact us and provide us with your personal data as part of a query we will keep a record of those details
  • if you hold office at international or chapter level, or are a member of a IGS committee, task force or similar group, we will process your data to ensure the effective running of the relevant group/position

Who has access to your information?

Employees of IGS will have access to your personal data where it is needed to carry out a specific task. IGS and Chapter Officers, and nominated individuals leading IGS committees and task forces will have limited access to your data, solely for the purpose of carrying out specific duties.  

On occasion we may use third parties to process personal data on our behalf (data processors), if we do this we will use carefully selected data processors and ensure we have appropriate contracts in place to protect your data. For example, we may outsource events organisation.

We may share your data with third parties for marketing purposes only where you have consented for us to do so.

We reserve the right to share limited aggregated data with relevant partners (e.g., IGS membership, key partners, essential service providers) but at no time does IGS sell or rent any specific user information.


We may analyse your personal information to create a profile of your interests and preferences so that we can contact you with information relevant to you. We may make use of additional information about you when it is available from external sources to help us do this effectively.

You have the right to stop us analysing your personal data for marketing purposes. If you wish to do this, please contact us.

Choices and Rights

You have a right to access the personal data we hold about you. You may ask us to rectify or erase the personal data we hold about you or to restrict the processing we carry out. You can also object to the way we are processing your personal data.

If you are a European Union citizen or resident, you are protected by the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which applies internationally, including outside the EU. Under GDPR you have specific rights to access or rectify, the data that IGS holds about you. Under certain conditions you may request that we erase, restrict processing, or transfer such data.

To submit a question about the way we process your data or to enforce your rights please contact us with your request. If you make a request, we will respond within one month.

We would always ask that you contact us first if you have any complaints about the way in which we process your personal data. If you have contacted us and you are still unhappy about the way we are using your data, you can submit a complaint to your national data protection authority.

How you can access and update your information

If you are member of IGS, you will be able to access your personal profile page on our website and change some of your details. You will also be able to change your preferences regarding marketing messages, subscription to newsletters and to apply for membership of the Technical Committees. Access your account.

If you wish to access data about you that is not available through your personal profile, you can submit a request for access to (insert contact).

Security precautions

We take the security of your data seriously. We have information security management systems in place (can we say more about what they are?)


‘Phishing’ is an email fraud practice intended to gather personal information by deception. Fraudsters pose as a trusted source (like your bank) and try to get you to divulge your personal details.

If you suspect that you have received a fraudulent email:

  • Don’t click on any links or attachments
  • Please report a phishing email that appears to be from IGS: contact us.  

Legitimate emails from IGS will not have been sent from a web-based mail server such as Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, etc.

In addition, we will never request money payments through a third party or promise you any kind of cash prize.

Where are your personal data processed?

IGS has its headquarters in the USA and this is where most of your personal data is likely to be processed, in addition to the country in which your Chapter is based. We may share personal data internally within IGS around the world to maintain our professional standards and memberships globally. Where this is done, we will do so in accordance with the law.

Under 16

The products and services provided by IGS are intended for individuals over the age of 16. If you are aged 16 or under‚ please get your parent/guardian’s permission before you provide us with personal information.

Cookie policy and log files

We use cookies to manage the operation and performance of our website. Cookies are small data text files that are placed on your computer when you visit a website. Cookies are useful because they allow a website to recognise a user’s device. They also  make websites work efficiently and provide us with information about how our website is used. Our cookies cannot look at your computer or read any personal information on your computer or mobile device.

By continuing to use igs.org, you confirm that you are happy to accept our use of cookies.

Most web browsers allow some control of most cookies through the browser settings. To find out more about cookies, including how to see what cookies have been set and how you can manage or delete them, visit www.allaboutcookies.org. You should note that if you do not accept the cookies or subsequently choose to disable cookies, you may not be able to access all the services on our site.

The only third party cookies we use are those required for Google Analytics (which allows us to track the site’s performance by seeing visitor numbers for example). You can opt out of being tracked by Google Analytics across all websites by visiting https://tools.google.com/dlpage/gaoptout

At IGS, we are keen to do all we can to engage with our members and make sure they are getting the best service possible from us. One of the ways that we do this is to monitor the open rates of messages.

Cookie policy – newsletters

IGS and its email processor (Minerva) monitor aggregated clickthroughs from its newsletters, as reported by Minerva’s newsletter processor (Constant Contact) and/or by Google Analytics, with respect to what data those parties make available and in accordance with applicable data privacy laws.

We do not collect or track the newsletter habits or actions of specific newsletter subscribers. We may, however, be able to see newsletter subscriber information to the extent you provide your information to a third party. Information of this nature may include email, name (if provided), company (if provided), position (if provided), or other fields allowed by the email processor and included on and filled in on an opt-in form.

IGS will not allow any email to be included in its newsletter subscription lists without opt-in consent and verification by the recipient at that email address.

Information on the privacy policy of Minerva is available here. Information on the privacy policy and data usage of Constant Contact and its parent company and related properties is available here

Cookie policy – social media

IGS and its third-party administrative services provider monitor aggregated clickthroughs from social media to its website, as reported by various third-party social media sites and/or by Google Analytics, with respect to what data those parties make available and in accordance with applicable data privacy laws. We do not collect or track the social media habits or actions of specific users and how often or if they access our sites through social media posts. We may, however, be able to see social media user information IF you provide your credentials to that third party. We encourage all IGS website users to review the privacy settings of the social media services they use. Information on how those sites collect and potentially make user information knowable is available on those third-party social media sites.

Log files

International Geosynthetics Society follows a standard procedure of using log files. These files log visitors when they visit websites. All hosting companies do this and they are a part of hosting services’ analytics. The information collected by log files includes internet protocol (IP) addresses, browser type, Internet Service Provider (ISP), date and time stamp, referring/exit pages, and possibly the number of clicks.

Log file information is not linked to any data that are personally identifiable. The purpose of the information is for analyzing trends, administering the site, tracking users’ movement on the website, and gathering demographic information.

While neither IGS nor Minerva collect specific user IP addresses, third-party services and devices (e.g., analytics processor, web browsers, mobile platforms) may. The data, as such, are potentially knowable. IGS encourages all website users to check the privacy settings of the devices and third-party services they utilize to interact with IGS.

We are run by our members for the purpose of greater scientific and technological understanding, and promoting responsible practices, which ultimately benefit our membership, the industry and the communities they serve.