Privacy, personal data, security. GDPR

The Wine Alchemy Privacy Policy, GDPR Compliance, and Security

Privacy Policy, GDPR compliance, and Security

1) Privacy and your personal data

Wine Alchemy commits to protect user privacy and personal data. Furthermore, it opposes Surveillance Capitalism. Hence, our privacy policy tells you how we obtain, define, and use your personal information. We also tell you about your rights.

The privacy policy applies to your personal information. The collection is on our website or other ways such as telephone or email. We make it clear when we collect personal information and we ask for your positive consent first. We also explain what we do with the information.

The retention and use of your personal information comply with the Data Protection Act and GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation). GDPR came into force on 25 May 2018. Regular reviews ensure our compliance with these laws.

2) About GDPR

GDPR strengthens, harmonises, and modernises EU data protection law and enhances individual rights and freedoms. It is consistent with the European understanding that privacy is a fundamental human right. GDPR regulates how individuals and organisations may obtain, use, store, and destroy personal data.

GDPR covers all EU institutions and all systems outside the EU that process the personal data of EU citizens. The penalties for non-compliance are stringent.

Wine Alchemy, established in the UK,  is the Data Controller. Paul Howard, Owner and Director, is the Data Protection Officer. Contact him via the website.

The ICO is the UK regulator, responsible for monitoring and investigating data breaches and complaints. Wine Alchemy has registration at the ICO (Information Commissioners’ Office), ZA317200. View the ICO Registration Certificate 18-21

3) The Wine Alchemy website

Wine Alchemy uses Google Analytics, a third-party US service. They collect internet log information and details of visitor behaviour patterns. We use them to find out things such as the number of visitors to the various parts of the site. This information is processed anonymously, which does not identify anyone. Neither ourselves nor Google Analytics tries to find out the identities of those browsing our website. Google Analytics participated in and certified its compliance with the Privacy Shield framework. They treated all personal data received from EU member countries under the Privacy Shield framework. However, the Privacy Shield Framework was invalidated by the Court of Justice of the European Union on 16 July 2020. Google has therefore redefined its terms and conditions according to Standard Contractual Clauses. The current terms can be seen here.

We use a third-party service, WordPress, to publish our website, run by Automattic Inc, in the US. The website is hosted and maintained at Maratopia Digital Marketing in the UK. WordPress collects anonymous information about user activity. They report on effectiveness to help improve it. For more information about how WordPress processes data, see Automattic’s notice. The Maratopia privacy policy can also be seen here.

The Wine Alchemy site features a Twitter feed. Twitter is in the US; their policy is here. There is no sharing of your personal data on Twitter or any other social media.

4) Personal Information collection

When you visit the Wine Alchemy website, you give personal information. This information is the minimum to operate our services and requires your positive consent. It includes your name and email address and collection is when:

  • digital information is sent from your access device to the website. This is about the device, its location and IP address.
  • completing a Contact Us form on the site;
  • subscribing to a Newsletter/Update to receive news, events, and information;
  • commenting on published articles;
  • email, where we may retain your email messages, your email address and our responses;

Wine Alchemy never collects sensitive personal data. Examples include health or financial information or information that reveals a person’s racial or ethnic origin. Wine Alchemy does not conduct personal data profiling.

5) Cookies

The Wine Alchemy website gathers information about site usage using cookies. A cookie is a small data file that a web page server adds to your hard drive. Cookies cannot identify you. They enable easier navigation and help us match content to your preferred interests more quickly. Our use of cookies complies with legislation.

Hence by using the Wine Alchemy website, you agree to cookie use. If you do not accept this, you can alter your own browser settings. You can turn off cookies or block those which are unacceptable to you. You can also delete existing cookies. All modern browsers allow you to do this and your browser has the instructions.

6) How do we use your information?

We use your information as follows:

  • to present content from our website effectively;
  • notify you of any changes;
  • provide subscribers with Newsletter/Update using MailChimp;
  • update our records;
  • provide anonymised website statistics via Google Analytics.

7) Personal information and third parties

We do not sell any personal information. The transfer of personal data for data processing is to Google Analytics, WordPress or MailChimp. These third-party data processors are outside the EU as described above. Notwithstanding this, we are under a duty to disclose or share your information to comply with any legal obligations.

8) Your Consent

Consent is the legal basis for processing your personal data under GDPR.

The Wine Alchemy Newsletter/Update subscription, Contact Me form and Article Comment are optional. Their use requires your positive consent to collect and use your personal data.  You may sign up for the Newsletter/Update, use the Contact Me form or leave Comments on published Articles. You must positively give your consent to these. Consent is by reading the privacy statement and ticking a blank consent box. You can refuse consent without detriment.

The Newsletter/Update is an optional free subscription service which requires your positive consent if signing up. You may unsubscribe from this at any time. All Newsletter/Updates contain clear unsubscribe links. Wine Alchemy unsubscribes any subscriber if they do not open a Newsletter/Update for two years. On unsubscribing, personal information is removed and destroyed.

The Newsletter/Update uses MailChimp, a data processor in the USA. It gathers statistics on email opening, location and usage. MailChimp certifies compliance with Privacy Shield. They treat all personal data received from EU member countries under the Privacy Shield framework. Further details on MailChimp’s compliance can be seen here.

9) Your rights

You may request access to your personal data that we collect online and maintain by contacting us at any time. This is without charge. Exceptionally, we may charge a fee based on our administrative costs.  This is when the application is unfounded, excessive, or repetitive. The response is within one calendar month of the request.

You have the right to ask us not to process information for marketing purposes. Any marketing will cease immediately upon receipt.

You have the right to have any of your personal data held by us securely erased, restricted or rectified. We will respond without undue delay, and in any case within one calendar month.

You may unsubscribe from the Newsletter/Update at any time.

10) Security and Trust

The Wine Alchemy website uses an SSL EV Certificate for safety and privacy using HTTPS. Consequently, in your browser, you may see this as:

  • our name, as we own the EV certificate;
  • a distinctive colour, usually green. This shows in the address bar, indicating a valid EV certificate;
  • a lock symbol in the address bar. It varies in colour depending on the website security status. By clicking on the lock symbol, you can obtain more information about the EV certificate.
  • some browsers now display HTTP sites as Not Secure.

HTTPS is more secure than HTTP. However, we cannot guarantee the security of your data during transit to our website. Once we receive it, we use security features to authorise access. You may use a VPN on your device to access the website.

11) No Advertising Policy

Wine Alchemy never accepts offers to advertise third-party goods and services. Wine Alchemy does not accept any advertising or feature sponsored links (aka”Clickbait”). We believe that people visiting the website are there to explore our published content. This should be without distraction or for use as a portal to junk or fake journalism. External links within articles are for information or further exploration.

Wine Alchemy does not accept monetary inducements. Any recommendations are based on personal opinion and are without guarantee.

Last update 17 January 2019