Privacy policy

  1. General
    1. Our pages include links to other websites. We are not responsible for the contents or possibly differing data privacy policies of these websites.
  2. Personal Information
    1. We do not record any personal information at all via our site (e.g. names, addresses, telephone numbers or email addresses), except when you voluntarily make such information available to us (e.g. when you register).
    2. We make an effort to design all services in such a way that they can be used with as little personal information as possible. Therefore, the only information requested for registration is that which is necessary to use our most important services. All users are free to enter further information about themselves - with the exception of children under 15 years, who also require permission from their guardians.
    3. On principle, only a minor amount of personal information will be visible for other users (e.g. town of residence). By entering further information and through optional use of extra functions, further personal information may be available to other users (all or selected). All functions are pre-set to best protect your personal information and so that other users will not see more than is absolutely necessary.
  3. Electronic Requests
    1. Requests via the contact form require entry of contact information (name and email address) or your registration as a member, so that they can be processed and answered. Requests and contact information are saved for processing and subsequent analysis (e.g. to improve our Help pages) and deleted afterward.
    2. If requests cannot be processed by us, the required information for the request will be given to a third party for the sole purpose of translation or direct processing. The same applies to requests or further communication after requests, via email or other means.
    3. To better retrace and process error messages and other requests, if possible we will determine the characteristics of the computer you are using, and save this information together with the request (e.g. the Internet browser being used).
  4. Children's information
    1. We do not knowingly collect personal information from children under 15 years without previously obtaining the express permission of the legal representative. On principle, using or passing on children's personal information occurs only to obtain the required permission from the legal representative, inasmuch as this is legally permitted, or to protect children.
    2. Our protective measures hold to German and European regulations and we try to incorporate further regulations of other countries. Furthermore, we support technical standards for protection of minors and incorporate recommendations from international organisations for the protection of minors.
  5. Recording of IP addresses
    1. At various pages on our site we will save your IP address and/or the IP address of your dial-up provider.
    2. For one thing, the web server's IP address will be saved in protocol files together with the name of the requested file, the date and time of the request, the amount of data transferred, and whether the request was successful. This protocol serves for statistical analysis and to improve our site. After completing the analysis the data is deleted or made anonymous by replacing the IP addresses in the protocol files.
    3. If we suspect an attack on our Internet infrastructure, all available data from the last web server request will be saved specifically for further testing. After analysis, this data will be deleted. As a defense against attacks, some IP addresses will also be entered into a blacklist and blocked for a time. Within the blocking period (depending on the type of attack) our site can no longer be used from these IP addresses. After the blocking period is over, the IP addresses will be removed automatically from the blacklist and will be allowed to be used again.
    4. Furthermore, the IP address will be saved when you use our site to send your own content to us or via us, for which you are responsible as the creator or sender. Your IP address will also be saved in locations where proof is required that you have carried out a particular action, e.g. when requesting, confirming or canceling services for which payment is required.
    5. A direct connection from the IP address to you is not possible and is excluded. The IP address will only be analysed in case of attacks on our Internet infrastructure, breaches of propriety and other illegal actions connected with the use of the Internet service. It is only possible to retrace the IP address to you via your dial-up provider with a police or prosecutor's investigation.
  6. Security
    1. We take technical and organisatorial measures to protect your personal information against unintentional or unrightful deletion, alteration, loss and unauthorized dissemination or access.
    2. Communication via email can prove to have security gaps. Emails can be caught and viewed by expert Internet users on the way to the recipient. If we receive an email from you (e.g. via the contact form) then we will assume that we have the right to reply via email. Otherwise we ask you to consider another type of communication (e.g. by post).
  7. Saving of data in cookies
    1. Cookies are files saved by your Internet browser. There are two types of cookies - some are deleted automatically when the browser is closed (session cookies) and others which remain valid beyond that, e.g. when you next visit our site (permanent cookies).
    2. We only use cookies at a low level - first, to protect you from attacks of other websites (known as CSRF attacks), and second, to save your entries and settings, which makes it easier for you to use our site (e.g. when entries in a form are pre-filled from your last visit).
    3. Without cookies your access will be very limited for security reasons, so it's necessary to change your Internet browser settings so that it will accept cookies, at least for our website.
  8. Advertising
    1. Our service is financed via advertising. However, we do not want to include too much advertising on our pages, and therefore we try to optimize the advertising to make it as interesting as possible for you, and appropriate to the topic of the web page being shown.
    2. For this optimization we use generally accessible data and also data you have entered anonymously, i.e. without anyone being able to retrace it to you personally.
    3. The following forms of advertising are used (also in combination):
      1. Advertising according to the data sent by your Internet browser. Here, the data sent by your Internet browser (e.g. the language setting) is analyzed and used to optimize the advertising (e.g. advertising in the right language).
      2. Context-sensitive advertising, i.e. advertising related to the topic of the web page (e.g. on a page about music there is advertising for musical instruments).
      3. Advertising according to saved data. Here, data we have saved about you (e.g. your age or your sex) is used in anonymous form to optimize advertising (e.g. advertising appropriate to your age).
    4. The advertising that is displayed and the advertising you react to can be saved by us for statistical analysis and to optimize advertising measures - exclusively in anonymous format, without being traceable to your person or your pseudonym. In exceptional cases advertising can be shown related to the content of a website which is not desired by the creator of that content. We cannot exclude such connections, but we make an effort to avoid them.
    5. Insofar as third parties are assigned to include, administrate or optimize advertising, possibly anonymous data will be sent to them inasmuch as these are relevant for the service provided. The assigned third parties, for their part, can try to use information on your visits to this and other websites to optimize the inclusion of advertising. This information is generally saved in the form of cookies. If you do not want third parties to save cookies for this purpose, please change your browser settings so that it deletes cookies after closing, blocks all cookies, or asks you before saving a cookie. Furthermore, third parties may insert elements into web pages for the purpose of counting advertisements shown and for statistical analysis.
  9. Use for the intended purpose
    1. We will only collect, process and use the personal information made available by you for the purposes we inform you about, except when collecting, processing and using it
      1. occurs for a further purpose connected directly to the original purpose for which the personal information was collected,
      2. is required to prepare, negotiate and fulfil a contract with you,
      3. is necessary due to legal obligation or regulation of the authorities or courts,
      4. to prove or protect legal rights or to defend against claims,
      5. serves to prevent abuse or other illegal activities, e.g. intentional attacks on our Internet infrastructure, to guarantee data security.
    2. If it becomes necessary for criminal prosecution or crime prevention that the responsible authorities are given access to a user's personal information, we as the operator will permit this access to the authorities in the legally prescribed form according to legal regulations and obligations. The request for information is to be in writing. Only to prevent an otherwise non-preventable danger to life, health and freedom of a person, in case of imminent danger, we will give information after verbal orders, which must however be given in writing afterward by the authorities. We will examine the requirements for the information request, and make a protocol of every information request and the data passed on, as far as this is possible and reasonable.
    3. To adjust our service to the needs of our users, we create statistics and save anonymous data for this purpose, e.g. the time of your visit, which Internet browser you are using, and which country you come from. Also, data is saved primarily to improve navigation, e.g. which pages you opened, how often and in which order, or which particular actions you took (e.g. using the Help). The data is collected and processed by us only. Only after the data has been processed, third parties may possibly have access to individual results of the analysis.
    4. At various locations we include services of third parties. In some cases the data of your request (e.g. IP address and browser recognition) will be transmitted to these services, as for every request on the Internet. Sometimes it is also necessary to transmit extra data - e.g. in the case of automatic spam testing on comments, the text of the comment will also be sent. However, we only transmit data necessary for that particular service, which as a rule will not allow for any connection to you personally - except if you are expressly informed about this before using a service.
  10. Viewing and deleting saved data
    1. We make an effort never to save more than is absolutely necessary, and we have created all basic settings so that you can use our service after giving as little data as possible.
    2. As a registered user of this service we give you the option at any time to make use of your right to information regarding the data saved about your person. Here we offer you an extensive overview of the personal information saved about you.
    3. For children under 15 years, the child as well as the legal representative have access to the overview of saved personal information. The legal representatives have no access to especially sensitive data of the child - this access will only be permitted after weighing up all aspects of the individual case and possibly only after listening to the child and obtaining agreement.
    4. Using our data privacy settings you can activate and deactivate extra functions for which further data about you will be collected. This collected data will be deleted as soon as possible when it is no longer needed.
    5. At any time you have the possibility to delete your registration and the data saved in connection with it. Deletion of this data can however be refused or limited, if this data
      1. is required for the preparation, negotiation or fulfilment of a contract with you,
      2. is necessary due to legal obligation or orders from the authorities or the courts,
      3. to prove or protect legal rights or to defend against claims,
      4. was saved when communicating with other users, and these users as communication participants have a rightful interest in continued access to the data,
      5. serves to prevent abuse or other unlawful activities, e.g. intentional attacks on our Internet infrastructure, to guarantee data security,
      6. has been provided specifically for further use and processing (e.g. translation suggestions sent by you).
    6. For children under 15 years, their legal representatives may also carry out the deletion of their registration.
  11. Backup and saving of data
    1. We carry out regular data backups, so that we can restore the previous status in case of a loss of data. Backups are regularly replaced with a newer data version. Your personal information is also included in these backups, however they will only be accessed in case of a necessary data restoration. In this case it can happen that data already changed or deleted by you may be restored, i.e. your change or deletion may be undone.
    2. On principle, data is saved within and delivered from our Internet infrastructure. However, it can be necessary to store certain files elsewhere (very large files, images, videos etc.) and to resort to external service providers for saving and delivering them. This external storage may also affect your personal information (e.g. photos), therefore we take particular care that our service providers fulfil our data protection standards.
  12. Data in search engines
    1. Large parts of our websites are available for Internet search engines or archiving services. They save the contents of the web pages and can also make these available to others in an out of date form even after changing or deleting them. We expressly inform you that we have no direct influence on the contents of search engines or archiving services.
    2. For your profile page, you can fully or partly block access for Internet search engines and archiving services. The default setting for children under 15 years allows no access at all to personal information. For all other members the default setting is for limited access to the most important information.
  13. Security information
    1. For your access, you should use a unique password which you are not already using for another website.
    2. You should absolutely keep your password secret. If the possibility exists that someone else knows your password, you should change it as soon as possible and inform us immediately if you suspect it has been misused.
    3. It is possible that someone might send you a fake email that looks as if it came from us. We never send emails that request you to enter your username or password.
    4. You should always log in only on our website, and never enter your access data anywhere else. If you receive emails with a link to the login page, please check very closely whether the link is really our website before you enter your access data.
  14. Translations
    1. Translations of this data privacy statement can contain discrepancies or inaccuracies due to translation. In case of doubt, the statement shall apply in its original language, German.