2. Collection and use of personal information
2.1 Why we collect personal information
The SOUTHERN CROSS VET collects personal information about you:
• because you have provided it to us, for instance if you contact us to make comments, complaints or to ask us questions, or you have interacted with one of our digital services (including online and mobile services), for instance by participating in forums, polls or competitions;
• because we need it to provide a product or service that you have requested, for instance, if you subscribe to an email list or loyalty program, enter a competition, or purchase products from the SOUTHERN CROSS VET;
• because you work for us, or apply to us for a job, a cadetship or work experience;
• for purposes directly related to any of the above.
2.2 How we collect information when you use a digital service (including online and mobile services)
Broadly, there are two types of information or data we collect:
Information that you specifically give us
For example, you may provide information about yourself when you are filling in a form or when you sign up to a service. This type of information may include your name, email address and age. The information that you give us may be:
• Personal information that is required. In some instances, you must provide personal information if you wish to use a particular service or participate in an activity. For example, your age may be required if we need to confirm that you are old enough to use a particular service.
• Personal information that is optional. You may choose to provide some personal information which is not required but is directly related to the SOUTHERN CROSS VET’s functions or activities. Usually this type of information will enable the SOUTHERN CROSS VET to improve or broaden the services we can offer you. If you choose not to provide this optional information, we would still be able to offer you the service, but perhaps with fewer options than if you had provided the optional information. For example, if you tell us your interests in a particular area, we may be able to provide you with specific SOUTHERN CROSS VET content that matches your interests. If you provide us with unsolicited information that we do not require or which is not directly related to the SOUTHERN CROSS VET’s functions or activities, the SOUTHERN CROSS VET may be required to destroy or de-identify that information, provided it is lawful and reasonable to do so.
• Permissions. Sometimes you will be asked to confirm that you agree to a particular activity. For example, you may need to expressly agree that you would like to receive a newsletter or to confirm that you agree to the terms and conditions of a competition.
You may be able to make changes to the information you provided us (for example, if you change your email address) or withdraw the permission you gave us for a particular service. We will make it clear how you do that.
Data we collect that tracks your activity
The SOUTHERN CROSS VET automatically gathers information to monitor the use of its digital services (including online and mobile services), like the numbers and frequency of visitors to SOUTHERN CROSS VET websites.
This information helps us improve our services by learning what our audiences use and don’t use. It can also help us identify if there are any problems with our services that need fixing.
Most of the data we collect is aggregated, and this information is effectively anonymous to us.
In some cases we may collect data that can be linked to you individually. For example, when you log in to an SOUTHERN CROSS VET digital service as a registered user, we may store records of information such as the comments you make, the pages you viewed or links you click on. Similarly, if you use our email newsletters we may collect data about the mailings you open and the links you click on from that newsletter.
As well as helping to improve our services, we may use this data to provide recommendations that you might find helpful based on your activity. In some cases, a digital profile may be formed based on your activity. We do this in order to improve your experience (for instance, because some services may allow you to build a profile which earns different privileges); or to improve our ability to provide a service (for instance, because our decisions about moderation of content may need to have regard to your profile).
Though surveys usually collect aggregate data, we will make it clear to you if any survey information is being collected in a way that could personally identify you.
If you use SOUTHERN CROSS VET Shops, further information may need to be collected because of the commercial nature of this site. Additional privacy information about SOUTHERN CROSS VET Shops is set out below.
3. Disclosure of personal information
3.1 Disclosure of personal information to third parties
The SOUTHERN CROSS VET may disclose your personal information to third parties for the following purposes:
• to provide the service you wish to use;
• for research purposes relating to the performance, quality, maintenance and improvement of the SOUTHERN CROSS VET’s services and products;
• to customise and promote SOUTHERN CROSS VET services which may be of interest to you;
• to provide technical support to you to use the SOUTHERN CROSS VET’s services;
• if permitted or required by law; or
• otherwise with your consent.
In many cases, the SOUTHERN CROSS VET imposes contractual restrictions equivalent to those imposed on the SOUTHERN CROSS VET under the Privacy Act in respect of collection and use of personal information by those third parties. In some cases, such as social media networks, the SOUTHERN CROSS VET’s ability to impose contractual restrictions is limited. In those circumstances, the SOUTHERN CROSS VET will carefully consider the risks to the protection of personal information when entering into arrangements with third parties.
These third parties may be located in Australia or overseas locations, including but not limited to Singapore and the USA.
The SOUTHERN CROSS VET may disclose your personal information (excluding sensitive information about you) to third parties for the purposes of direct marketing the SOUTHERN CROSS VET’s services. The SOUTHERN CROSS VET will obtain your specific consent to disclose sensitive information for the purposes of direct marketing the SOUTHERN CROSS VET’s services. You will be able to opt-out of direct marketing at any time if you so choose.
Under no circumstances will the SOUTHERN CROSS VET sell or receive payment for licensing or disclosing your personal information.
3.2 Information that you disclose publicly
The SOUTHERN CROSS VET provides content and services on a range of platforms with interactive features that you can contribute to. These include: guestbooks, forums, event diaries, reviews, recipes, online voting, blogs, and comments on opinion articles.
When using digital services (including online and mobile services), we suggest that you use your discretion and exercise caution when providing your personal information. For instance, if you “share” information that you have posted on an SOUTHERN CROSS VET website using a social media tool, it is likely that you will be sharing your personal information. The SOUTHERN CROSS VET has a limited capacity to protect personal information that you choose to share in this way.
Note that whenever you post personal information in publicly accessible places, such as chat rooms or message boards, this information becomes available to anyone with access to the internet. This information can be collected and used by others. In short, if you post personal information (such as your contact details) online, you may receive unwanted messages from other parties in return. Therefore, we recommend that you refrain from posting any information that you do not want seen in these public areas. For example, when participating in an SOUTHERN CROSS VET forum or guest book, your name will appear on the message board. In some cases, it may be appropriate to use a pen name or pseudonym rather than your real name when you are online. You must not intentionally use the name of another living person.
Ultimately, you are responsible for maintaining the secrecy of your passwords and/or any personal information. Be responsible whenever you are online or using a digital service.
3.3 Information that is disclosed via other platforms or services
Some SOUTHERN CROSS VET services may be integrated with external services, including social media networks. This may mean that information, for instance about your interests and activities, is tracked or pulled from other places (such as Facebook). If you are signed in to an SOUTHERN CROSS VET service which is integrated with other media tools, this information may be available to others depending on the privacy settings you have in place on other platforms.
The number and nature of social media platforms is changing rapidly, and the way in which information is shared between them is becoming increasingly complex. To help you manage and protect your personal information, the SOUTHERN CROSS VET will ask you to opt-in before making your personal information available through an integrated service. You may also opt-out of your participation in most of the SOUTHERN CROSS VET’s digital services. Information about how to opt-out will be provided in the particular service. However, you should be aware that the SOUTHERN CROSS VET may continue to store personal information provided by you prior to you opting-out.
Your ability to opt-out of a third party tool or platform will depend on the conditions governing your agreement with that third party.
4. Accessing your personal information
You have the right to request access to personal information that is held by the SOUTHERN CROSS VET about you. Requests for access will be dealt with by the SOUTHERN CROSS VET in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act 1982.
You also have the right to request the correction of any of your personal information that the SOUTHERN CROSS VET holds. The SOUTHERN CROSS VET will take reasonable steps to make appropriate corrections to personal information so that it is accurate, complete and up-to-date. To seek access to, or correction of, your personal information please contact the SOUTHERN CROSS VET as follows:
5. Use of your personal information to contact you
We will never knowingly send you unsolicited commercial electronic messages. More information on the Spam Act 2003 is available from the regulator’s website: www.acma.gov.au/spam
We may use information that we know about your likes and interests to tell you about other SOUTHERN CROSS VET programs, products and services when you are online. We may know about your likes and interests because you have provided that information, for instance via a social media platform, or because we have inferred this based on your browsing history, or other data related to your behaviour on SOUTHERN CROSS VET digital services.
6. Protection of your personal information
The SOUTHERN CROSS VET will take all reasonable and practicable steps to ensure that your personal information is properly protected from misuse or loss, and unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.
At the same time, we are committed to providing innovative and interactive experiences, and to being available to audiences on multiple platforms. Some of those platforms are not operated or controlled by the SOUTHERN CROSS VET, and our ability to protect your personal information is limited.
We encourage you to be vigilant about the protection of your own personal information when using third party digital services (such as social media platforms). As far as reasonably practicable, we will make sure that our relationships with those third parties include appropriate protection of your privacy.
The SOUTHERN CROSS VET uses a “cookie” system on its digital services. A “cookie” is a small data file placed on your machine or device which lets our digital service store information. This information allows us to make our digital services easier to use and more relevant.
Credit card information is never stored in a cookie.