Privacy policy

This Privacy Policy governs the data processing of the platform MercatorGlobe offered by Stiftung Mercator GmbH, Huyssenallee 40, 45128 Essen, Deutschland (responsible party).

Below, we summarise the personal data we gather and how we process it. “Personal data” refers to details that can help identify a person, that is, details that can be traced back to an individual. This typically includes the name, e-mail address or telephone number. Purely technical data that may be assigned to a person are also considered personal data. Our platform is operated by Paulbergman GmbH (https://www.alumnii.de), which acts as the data processor of all data collected on this platform. The lawfulness of data processing is based on Art. 6(1f) of the GDPR. This standard permits the processing of personal data within the scope of the responsible party’s “legitimate interest” “except where such interests are overridden by the interests or fundamental rights and freedoms of the data subject which require protection of personal data”. Our legitimate interest is outsourcing tasks to external service providers who, because of their specialization, can do this more efficiently. You can object to this data processing at any time if specific reasons related to your particular situation speak against it. In that case, just send an e-mail to: alumni@stiftung-mercator.de.

Please send any questions you may have regarding data protection to the data protection officer at: mercatorAT2b-advice DOT com.

You are not legally or contractually required to provide any personal data on this platform. You are only obliged to provide personal data here if this is indicated in a particular case in this privacy policy. That said, processing your personal data is necessary in order to use the platform’s functions and to execute orders.

When you visit our platform…

… we collect data transferred in connection your visit, in particular, the date and time the portal is accessed, your IP address, where the request originated (the “referer”) and data about your operating system and browser. We also collect data on the sub-pages you access.

IP addresses are assigned to every device (smartphones, tablets, PCs) connected to the Internet. Which IP address this is depends on the Internet access your end device uses to go online. This may be the IP address assigned by your Internet Service Provider, for example, if you use Wi-Fi to connect to the Internet at home. However, it could be an IP address assigned by your mobile network operator or the IP address of a public or private Wi-Fi company or other Internet connection. In its current most common form (IPv4), the IP address consists of four groups of digits. Most of the time, as a private user you will not be using a constant IP address because your provider only temporarily assigns you an IP address (a “dynamic IP”). In principle, a permanent IP address (a “static IP”) makes it easier to clearly identify users. Except for prosecuting hackers, we generally do not use this data in any personalized fashion. We use it to evaluate – on an anonymous basis – how many times the portal is accessed daily, and similar information.

Our portal uses the new IPv6 addresses. An IPv6 address consists of eight groups of four digits each. The first four groups of digits are typically assigned dynamically to private users; the device you use to browse the Internet determines the last four groups of digits (the “interface identifier”). Unless configured differently in your operating system, a “MAC address” is used. This is a type of serial number that is uniquely assigned to each IP-enabled device in the world. We do not save the last four blocks of your IPv6 address. In general, we recommend that you activate the “privacy extensions” on your end device in order to more effectively pseudonymize the last four blocks of your IPv6 address. Most common operating systems have privacy extensions, but they are not always factory presets.

The authorization for data processing is based on GDPR Art. 6(1f). This standard allows the processing of personal data within the scope of the responsible party’s “legitimate interests”, unless your fundamental rights, fundamental freedoms and interests prevail. Our legitimate interest is constantly improving our offer, as well as analyzing and defending the platform against attacks and ending misuse. You can object to this data processing at any time if specific reasons based on your situation speak against it. All you need to do is send an e-mail to: alumni@stiftung-mercator.de.

All personal data in log files is automatically deleted after 30 days at the latest.

Our portal uses cookies. These are small text files that are stored on your terminal. Among other functions, cookies enable us to treat you as a logged-in user and/or member for several days after you first log in, or to record if you have previously accessed the portal.

We also use cookies to record the frequency of use and number of site users and site usage patterns, such as how long you stay on which page and which platform content you use. We use the Matomo open source web analytics programme and store the data only on our servers. All usage data is combined into anonymous user profiles.

We base our data processing on GDPR Art. 6(1f). This permits processing personal data within the scope of the “legitimate interests” pursued by the responsible party, unless they are overridden by your interest or fundamental rights and freedoms that require protecting your personal data. Our legitimate interest is analyzing our platform and tailoring our services in order to meet our customers’ needs and continuously improve our offer, as well as to eliminate misuse. If you do not agree to the use of cookies, we recommend that you configure your browser accordingly. However, that may mean that you will not be able to use all the portal’s functions. You can deactivate tracking by Matomo here:

Cookie Settings

All personal data is automatically deleted after 24 months at the latest.

If you register for the newsletter or use the contact form…

… we collect all the data you provide in the respective forms in addition to the data mentioned above. We store this data on the basis of your consent in accordance with GDPR Art. 6(1a). When processing contact requests, the data we collect is deleted after your request has been dealt with or, if necessary, will be saved on the basis of the initiation of a contractual relationship (legitimized in this case by Art. 6(1b) of the GDPR). You can delete your personal data that was collected in connection with registering for a newsletter by using the link found at the end of the newsletter.

Google reCAPTCHA is used to check and avoid interactions on our portal through automated access or “bots”. This is a service provided by Google LLC, Gordon House, Barrow Street, Dublin 4 Ireland, hereinafter referred to as “Google”.

Through certification under the "EU/US Privacy Shield" Google guarantees compliance with EU data protection requirements when personal data is processed in the USA.
This service makes it possible for Google to determine the portal from which a request is sent and the IP address where the reCAPTCHA input box is used. In addition to the IP address, Google may also collect other information necessary to provide and ensure the service.
The legal basis for this is GDPR Art. 6(1f). Our legitimate interests lie in making our portal secure and defending against unwanted automated access in the form of spam or the like. Google offers further information regarding the general handling of your user data at https://policies.google.com/privacy.

When you register as a member…

… we collect the same data as for non-registered visitors to the platform (see above). In addition, we collect the data generated when you interact with our system – contact details and images that you enter or upload. We store messages that you send to other members, comments you make on the platform, groups you join, your tags, and your participation in events. In order to regularly improve our mailings, we also record whether you have opened and clicked on e-mail newsletters.

We collect all this data to fulfil our contractual obligations to you in pursuit of our purpose (Networking within the Mercator Network), Art. 6(1b) of the GDPR. To fulfill our obligations, we need at least your name and an e-mail address. Unless you provide these details, you cannot be a member in the network. We may request additional mandatory information in order to authenticate potential members.

All other data is to be provided voluntarily in order to enable us and other members to contact you more easily. You can view the data stored about you in your profile settings, where you can also delete your personal data. In keeping with the platform’s purpose, we make your contact details available to other members of the network. In your profile settings, you can control exactly which data can be viewed by other members.

From time to time we will contact you by e-mail to inform you about current developments in and around our network. You may opt out of receiving such e-mails in your profile settings. However, even if you have chosen not to receive newsletters, we reserve the right to send you e-mails if this is necessary to fulfill the purpose of the network (e.g., to provide obligatory information).

As a data subject…

…you have the following rights under the GDPR:
  • You may request information about the personal data we have processed. This includes information about why we process data, categories of personal data, categories of recipients and the planned storage period. You can get an overview of this in your profile settings.
  • You can request the rectification or completion of data we have stored. As a rule, you can also correct the data yourself in your profile settings. You can further request that all the data we have processed be erased. The easiest way to do this is to use the delete button in your profile settings.
  • You may request that the processing of your personal data be restricted.
  • You can request your personal data in a machine-readable format and to transmit it to another responsible party.
  • You can withdraw all forms of consent used to process your data at any time. The easiest way to do this is in your profile settings.
  • AIf we process your data on the basis of a legitimate interest, you are entitled to object.

If you have any questions or objections regarding data protection, and to exercise the rights named above, please contact alumni@stiftung-mercator.de. We will be happy to answer your questions. You also have the right to lodge a complaint with a supervisory authority.

A list of supervisory authorities can be found at: https://www.bfdi.bund.de/DE/Infothek/Anschriften_Links/anschriften_links-node.html