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Privacy policy

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Respecting your privacy

This website is owned and operated by the International Rescue Committee (IRC). We recognize that visitors to our site may be concerned about the information they provide to us, online or otherwise, and how we treat that information. This Privacy Policy addresses those concerns.

The IRC respects the privacy of all our supporters, whether donors, members of our mailing lists, or visitors to our website. Should you have questions regarding our privacy policy, you may contact us at donorservices [at] rescue.org.

Information collected by the IRC

On our website we do not collect personally identifiable information from individuals unless they provide it to us voluntarily and knowingly. This means we do not require you to register or provide information to us in order to view our site. The IRC only gathers personally identifiable information, such as names, addresses, zip/postal codes, email addresses, etc., when voluntarily submitted by a visitor. For example, personally identifiable information may be collected in order to respond to a stated desire to apply for a position, volunteer time to the IRC, make a donation or sign up to be part of an IRC mailing list. 

As with most other Internet sites, our web server automatically recognizes certain information about your device when you visit our website. This information includes your browser type and operating system; web pages on our website that you view; links you click; your device’s IP address; the length of time you visit our website; and the referring URL, or the webpage that led you to our website. We use the information we automatically collect to help diagnose problems with our server, to improve the content of our website, and for our online marketing efforts.

We may share your information, including personal information, as follows:

Affiliates. We may disclose the information we collect from you to our affiliates or subsidiaries; however, if we do so, their use and disclosure of your personally identifiable information will be subject to this Policy.

Service Providers. We may disclose the information we collect from you to vendors, service providers, contractors or agents who perform functions on our behalf, such as hosting our website and processing payments. The IRC requires that all service providers hold personal information in strict confidence.

Non-affiliated Charities and Not-for-Profit Organizations. We may disclose certain information that we collect with other not-for-profit and charitable organizations for their own fundraising purposes. You may opt-out of such sharing as described in the Opt-Out Policy section below.

We may also share information in the following circumstances:

Business Transfers. If we are or may be acquired by or merged with another organization, including a non-profit or a for-profit entity, if substantially all of our assets are transferred to another organization, or as part of a bankruptcy proceeding, we may transfer the information we have collected about you to the other organization.

In Response to Legal Process. We may disclose the information we collect from you in order to comply with the law, a judicial proceeding, court order, or other legal process, such as in response to a court order or a subpoena.

To Protect Us and Others. We may disclose the information we collect from you where we believe it is necessary to investigate, prevent, or take action regarding illegal activities, suspected fraud, situations involving potential threats to the safety of any person, violations of our Terms and Conditions or this Policy, or as evidence in litigation in which we is involved.

Aggregate and De-Identified Information. We may share aggregate, anonymous, or de-identified information with other entities for marketing, advertising, research or similar purposes.

Opt-out policy

If you supply us with your postal address, email address or phone number, you may receive periodic communications from us with information on our programs and services. If you do not want to receive postal mail, email or phone calls from us in the future, or if you would like us to no longer share your information with other not-for-profit and charitable organizations for their own purposes, please let us know by sending your request via email to donorservices [at] rescue.org.

Exceptions to opt-out policy

The IRC may disclose personal information if compelled by law or a regulatory authority.  In addition, we may need to disclose personal information in special cases when we have reason to believe that disclosing this information is necessary to identify, contact or bring legal action against someone who may be causing injury or interfering (either intentionally or unintentionally) with the IRC’s rights or property, IRC’s supporters, or anyone else that could be harmed by such activities.

Protecting your information

We have implemented reasonable precautions to protect the information we collect from loss, misuse, and unauthorized access, disclosure, alteration, and destruction.

The IRC’s online donation site has security measures in place to protect the loss, misuse and alteration of information under our control.  We have implemented measures designed to secure the collection and transmission of sensitive user information, including credit card information, by using SSL (Secure Socket Layer) encryption technology. This method reflects industry standard security protocol and makes it difficult for anyone to intercept your credit card information. Please be aware that despite our efforts, no data security measures can guarantee security.

Credit card numbers are not stored on any IRC servers. In IRC’s software application, credit card numbers are replaced with reference tokens that are used to process future transactions (e.g. for recurring gift pledges). IRC’s staff cannot access your credit card information at any time.

If you would prefer to give by mail, please send your check to International Rescue Committee, PO Box 6068, Albert Lea, MN 56007-9847. If you would like to make a credit card donation by phone, you may call +1 855 9RESCUE (973-7283).

How we use "cookies"

Visitors should be aware that non-personal information and data may be automatically collected by the IRC’s website through the use of "cookies."  Cookies are small text files that a website can use to recognize repeat visitors, facilitate visitors’ ongoing access to and use of the site, and allow a site to track usage behavior and compile aggregate data that will facilitate content improvements.

Cookies are not programs that come onto a visitor’s system and damage files. Generally, cookies work by assigning to the visitor a unique number that has no meaning outside the assigning site. If a visitor does not want information collected through the use of cookies, there is a simple procedure in most browsers that allows the visitor to deny or accept the cookie feature. For more information about how to disable cookies, refer to the “help” or “customer support” section of your specific browser application.

We also use clear GIFs, which are tiny graphics with a unique identifier, similar in function to cookies. In contrast to cookies, which are stored on your device, clear GIFs are embedded invisibly on web pages. We may use clear GIFs (a.k.a. web beacons, web bugs or pixel tags), in connection with our Site to, among other things, track the activities of Site visitors, help us manage content, and compile statistics about website usage. We and our service providers also use clear GIFs in HTML emails to our customers, to help us track email response rates, identify when our emails are viewed, and track whether our emails are forwarded.

The IRC uses cookie and other online tracking technology to improve visitors’ online experience and facilitate their visit within our site, to better understand how visitors use our website, and to assist us with our online marketing efforts.

We use automated devices and applications, such as Google Analytics, to evaluate usage of our Site. We use these tools to help us improve the performance of our Site and our user’s experience on our Site. These entities may use cookies and other tracking technologies, such as web beacons or local storage objects (LSOs), to perform their services. To learn more about Google’s privacy practices, please review the Google Privacy Policy at https://www.google.com/policies/privacy. You can also download the Google Analytics Opt-out Browser Add-on to prevent your data from being used by Google Analytics at https://tools.google.com/dlpage/gaoptout.

We use network advertisers to serve online advertisements on non-affiliated websites or other media (e.g., social networking platforms). This enables us and these network advertisers to target advertisements to you for products, services, and organizations in which you might be interested. Ad network providers, advertisers, sponsors and/or traffic measurement services may use cookies, JavaScript, web beacons (including clear GIFs), Flash LSOs and other tracking technologies to measure the effectiveness of their ads and to personalize advertising content to you. These cookies and other technologies are governed by each entity's specific privacy policy, not this one. We may provide these advertisers with information, including personal information, about you.

As noted above, we disclose certain information (such as your email address) to Facebook Custom Audiences (for more information on Facebook Custom Audience go here or to opt-out, go to the Facebook ad preferences page) and Google (to opt-out of Google Analytics Audiences and other Google advertising, go here)—so that we can better target ads and content to you and others with similar interests on third parties’ websites or media (“Custom Audiences”). We may also work with other ad networks and marketing platforms that enable us and other participants to target ads to Custom Audiences submitted by us and others. You may also control how Facebook and other third parties display certain ads to you, as explained further in their respective privacy policies or by using the opt-outs described below.

Users may opt out of many ad networks. For example, you may go to the Digital Advertising Alliance ("DAA") Consumer Choice Page for information about opting out of interest-based advertising and their choices regarding having information used by DAA companies. You may also go to the Network Advertising Initiative ("NAI") Consumer Opt-Out Page for information about opting out of interest-based advertising and their choices regarding having information used by NAI members.

Opting out from one or more companies listed on the DAA Consumer Choice Page or the NAI Consumer Opt-Out Page will opt you out from those companies' delivery of interest-based content or ads to you, but it does not mean you will no longer receive any advertising through our Site, Services, or on other websites. You may continue to receive advertisements, for example, based on the particular website that you are viewing (i.e., contextually based ads). Also, if your browsers are configured to reject cookies when you opt out on the DAA or NAI websites, your opt-out may not be effective. Additional information is available on the DAA's website at www.aboutads.info or the NAI's website at www.networkadvertising.org.

Do-Not-Track. Currently, our systems do not recognize browser “do-not-track” requests.

International Personal Information

The General Data Protection Regulation (‘GDPR’) is a European Union regulation concerning the use and processing of personal information of individuals located in the European Union. GDPR is effective as of May 25, 2018. We are committed to processing your information in compliance with the GDPR, as applicable.

We will use reasonable efforts to securely process all personal information in line with the rights specified under the GDPR, in particular those related to the following requests:

  • Access to your personal information;
  • Correction of the personal information that we hold;
  • Deletion of your personal information;
  • A restriction of processing of your personal information;
  • Transfer of your personal information to another party; or
  • Objection to processing of your personal information based on the IRC’s legitimate interest (or those of a third party) to use it and there is something about your particular situation that causes you to object to such processing.

We will hold your information and use it as described in this Privacy Policy. We consider that the IRC has a legitimate interest in collecting and processing your information. The IRC responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises and helps people whose lives and livelihoods are shattered by conflict and disaster to survive, recover, and gain control of their future and pursuing these aims is not in conflict with your rights. This provides our lawful basis to use your personal information, within the limitations set forth herein.

This website is published in the United States and is subject to laws of the United States. Specifically, the laws of the State of New York shall govern this Privacy Policy regardless of your location. You hereby expressly consent to exclusive jurisdiction and venue in the federal and state courts located in New York, New York, for all matters or disputes arising out of or relating to this Privacy Policy or your access or use of the website. 

If you are located in a country outside the United States and voluntarily submit personal information to us, you thereby consent to the general use of such information as provided in this Privacy Policy and to the transfer of that information to, and/or storage of that information in, the United States. The IRC shall not be liable under any circumstances for damages resulting from use of information collected from visitors to this website.  We note that you are under no obligation to disclose any personal information to the IRC if you do not want to.

Links to third-party sites

In order to provide certain services and materials, our website may allow you to “click” over to other websites. This Privacy Policy only applies to Rescue.org.  This Privacy Policy does not apply to any third-party sites. The IRC is not responsible for the privacy practices or content of such other websites, even if our name and logo appear on the screen.  We recommend that you review the privacy policies on third-party sites before you use any services or programs they offer.

Children’s privacy

The IRC does not knowingly ask children ages 13 and under for any information. Visitors 13 and under should ask their parent or legal guardian for assistance when using Rescue.org and should not submit any personally identifiable information to the IRC.

Changes to Privacy Policy

The IRC may revise this Privacy Policy from time to time without advance notice. Accordingly, we recommend that you check for updates to this Privacy Policy on an ongoing basis. Changes were last made to this Privacy Policy on April 17, 2020.

If you have any questions about this Privacy Policy, please contact:

International Rescue Committee
122 East 42nd Street
New York, New York 10168-1289
Phone: +1 855 9RESCUE (973-7283)
Email: donorservices [at] rescue.org

By using the IRC’s website, you signify your agreement to this Privacy Policy. Further, your continued use of our website following the posting of changes to this Privacy Policy will mean you accept those changes.

However, you are under no obligation to disclose any personal information to the IRC if you do not want to. If you are not comfortable with IRC’s uses of your personal information, you may always choose to opt out or decide not to use those website services or features that require your personal information.