Privacy Policy and Collection Statement

The privacy of members, supporters, volunteers, sponsors and donors is considered a high priority for The Wilderness Society. This policy sets out our information handling procedures and the rights and obligations that you and we have in relation to your personal information. In the event of any inconsistency, the legislative requirements will prevail over the provisions of this document.

We take your privacy very seriously

We are committed to ensuring that your privacy is protected. We recognise the essential right of individuals to have their personal information handled in ways they would expect, to be protected and to be made available to them. These privacy values are reflected in this Privacy Policy.

This Policy is created in compliance with the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (Privacy Act) and the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs).

We will only collect, use and disclose your personal information if it is reasonably necessary for our functions and activities associated with our purpose.


Personal information means information or an opinion about an identified individual, or an individual who is reasonably identifiable whether the information or opinion is true or not; and whether the information or opinion is recorded in a material form or not.

Sensitive information means:

  • Information or an opinion about an individual’s racial or ethnic origin;

  • Political opinions, membership of a political association;

  • Religious beliefs or affiliations;

  • Philosophical beliefs;

  • Membership of a professional or trade association;

  • Membership of a trade union;

  • Sexual orientation or practices;

  • Criminal record;

  • Health information about an individual;

  • Genetic information about an individual that is not otherwise health information;

  • Biometric information that is to be used for the purpose of automated biometric verification or biometric identification, or

  • Biometric templates.

What personal information we collect

The type of personal information that we collect and hold will depend on the nature of your dealings with us. We only collect personal information that is necessary to perform the functions and activities associated with your involvement with us, including employment.

We may collect personal information from you including your name, postal and residential address, email address, telephone numbers, age, date of birth, occupation/job title, name of employer, credit card and bank account details, tax file number, location information, and superannuation details.

We may also collect your contact preferences, communication history and transaction history with us.

It may also be necessary to collect sensitive information from you including information about any medical conditions that you have, emergency contact details and dietary requirements - for example, for an event which you are attending.

We deliberately seek to limit the collection of sensitive information in our Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems.

How we collect personal information

We will generally collect personal information directly from the owner of the personal information. We will endeavour to only ask you for personal information that is reasonably necessary for the activities you are seeking to be involved in.

We solicit and collect personal information when distributing a petition, requesting donations, forms, face-to-face meetings, email correspondence, telephone calls, and hard copy mail, expressions of interests or applications to participate in an event, requesting information for bequests, and advertising for employment and volunteer opportunities. This collection may be via third party platforms such as BBIS, NationBuilder, Do Gooder, Shopify, and Paperform. Wherever possible in other circumstances, we will endeavour to collect your personal information from you.

We may collect personal information from individuals such as staff members, people making enquiries, bequest makers, volunteers, donors, members, and contractors.

On occasion, we may collect personal information from a third party. For example, we purchase the personal information of potential donors from a trustworthy third party to help us expand our support-base and attract more donations.

We will generally obtain consent from the owner of personal information to collect their personal information. Consent will usually be provided in writing however sometimes it may be provided orally or may be implied through a person’s conduct. When consent is oral or implied, we may make a record of this consent in the CRM or wherever this information is collected. Sensitive information is only collected with your consent.

On occasion, we may collect personal information online via a third party service provider. Where a third party is involved in online data collection, we always recommend you review their Privacy Policy.

Can you deal with us anonymously or using a pseudonym

You are not required to provide all the personal information and/or sensitive information that we request from you However, if you choose not to provide information as requested, this may impact our ability to service your needs. For instance, we can collect anonymous donations, however we will not be able to provide a tax receipt. If you are volunteering, we will not be comfortable allowing you to participate in certain activities without necessary clearance (such as medical or workers’ clearance).

How do we use personal information

We may collect, hold, use or disclose your personal information for the following general purposes:

  • To identify you;

  • For the primary purpose for which your personal information was originally collected;

  • For a purpose for which you have consented; and

  • For any other purpose authorised or required by an Australian law or a court or tribunal.

More specifically, we may collect, hold, use or disclose personal information to:

  • Send you correspondence, publications, articles and newsletters telling you about our work;

  • Carry out day-to-day administration associated with our functions and activities such as managing volunteers’ contact and interaction;

  • Look after the safety and wellbeing of people who participate in our programs and activities;

  • Process payments and collect debts owed to us;

  • To advise you about campaign issues;

  • Promote membership or fundraising matters;

  • Seek donations and process donations and tax receipts; and

  • Invite you to events or meetings such as the annual Election of Directors, General Meetings or Members Forum.

In relation to the personal information of prospective and current staff members, contractors and volunteers, we use the personal information for purposes including:

  • To enable us to carry out our recruitment functions;

  • Correspond with the person, provide training and professional development;

  • Fulfil the terms of any contractual relationship; and

  • Ensure the person can perform their duties to facilitate our functions and activities.

We may publish the photo of members, staff, contractors and volunteers in publications and via social media platforms.

If you have any concerns about your personal information being used in any of these ways, you must notify us immediately.

We may disclose your personal information to:

  • A government department;

  • A local Campaign Centre of TWS;

  • Mailing house;

  • Telemarketing organisation

  • a data processing partner;

  • Like-minded organisations with information that may be of interest to you;

  • An organisation or person we are authorised to disclose your personal information to; and

  • An organisation or person with your consent.

We may disclose personal information to a recipient overseas (for example where we have outsourced a business activity to an overseas provider) in accordance with the Privacy Act. We take reasonable steps to ensure that the overseas recipient does not breach the APPs in relation to the information.

Otherwise, we may disclose personal information to a recipient overseas in accordance with the Privacy Act where:

  • You have consented to the disclosure;

  • We reasonably believe that the overseas recipient is subject to a law or binding scheme that protects the information in a way that is substantially similar to the way the information is protected under the Privacy Act and the APPs; or

  • The disclosure is required or authorised by an Australian law or a court order.

For example, when we post on social media or use some software, personal information may be stored on servers located in the USA.

If you have any concerns about your personal information being disclosed in any of these ways, please notify us immediately.

How we engage in direct marketing

It is important for us to inform the community about our purpose and the work we do so we can continue to protect, promote and restore wilderness and natural processes across Australia.

We will use the personal information you give to us to send marketing information. If we have not collected your personal information directly from you, we confirm your consent prior to using your personal information for direct marketing.

We may disclose your personal information to another organisation that assists us with our marketing.

If you do not want to receive any direct marketing material or if you do not wish your details to be exchanged with like-minded organisations, please contact us on 1800 030 641 or [email protected] to opt out. You will also be given the opportunity to opt out from direct marketing at the time of receiving communication (for instance you can unsubscribe from marketing emails).

What you need to know when using our website

When you visit our website, we may collect and store your computer’s assigned IP address, the date and time of your visit, the information accessed and the referring page. We will also collect other non-identifying data for statistical purposes. This information is not linked to your personal information unless required by law.

Like many websites, from time to time our website may use cookies, tracking pixels and related technologies. Cookies are small data files that are served by our platform and stored on your device. We use cookies dropped by us or third parties for a variety of purposes including to operate and personalize the website. Also, cookies may also be used to track how you use the site to target ads to you on other websites.

Cookies may also be used to record non-personal information such as the date, time or duration of your visit, or the pages accessed, for website administration, statistical and maintenance purposes. Any such information will be aggregated and not linked to particular individuals unless required by law.

You have the ability to accept or decline cookies by modifying the settings in your browser. Please note that some parts of the website may not function fully for users that disallow cookies.

How we store personal information

We take all reasonable steps to protect the personal information in our possession from misuse, interference and loss and from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.

We protect personal information in a number of ways including:

  • Securely storing paper records with access controls, archiving and routine destruction;

  • Password restricted access to computerised records such as two factor authentication;

  • Routine security risk assessments and data security measures such as antivirus and web protection;

  • Limits on external access to systems, such as via a VPN;

  • Securely transferring data with data partners, for example, by password protected and encrypted files; and

  • Internal policies in relation to access to personal information that require personal information to be stored in the CRM system.

If we no longer need personal information, we will take reasonable steps to destroy the information or ensure that it is de-identified.

We also protect the security of your personal information by offering privacy and data breach training to staff, an implementation of a data breach response plan which encourages staff to identify and report possible breaches early to minimise risks of personal information security beaches.

We endeavour not to retain personal information that is no longer necessary for the purpose for which it was collected or any other functions and activities of ours. We do this by:

  • destroying and deleting personal information;

  • changing information to a pseudonym;

  • treating it anonymously; or

  • de-identifying it.

How you can access your personal information

If you want to access your personal information held by us you can do so by contacting the Privacy Officer at [email protected]. Please be aware that we can refuse access to your personal information in a number of circumstances under the Privacy Act. We will seek to handle all requests for access to personal information as quickly as possible.

How we ensure the quality of personal information

We will take reasonable steps to ensure that the personal information that we collect from you is accurate, up-to-date and complete.

We will take reasonable steps to ensure that the personal information that we use and disclose is, having regard to the purpose of the use or disclosure, accurate, up-to-date, complete and relevant.

These reasonable steps include a procedure for collecting personal information that applies to all staff and volunteers, which requires the collection of personal information in official templates. Further, all communications and social media communications are carried out within our contact management systems. We limit the amount of entries of personal information to avoid human error and maintain accurate records.

You may contact us on 1800 030 641 or [email protected] , to update the personal information that we hold.

How you can make a complaint

If you wish to complain about any breach or potential breach of this privacy policy, you should contact our Privacy Officer.

You can contact the Privacy Officer at The Wilderness Society by:

Privacy Officer

[email protected]
Phone: 1800 030 641
Post: Privacy Officer, The Wilderness Society, GPO Box 716, Hobart, Tasmania 7001

It is our intention to resolve any complaint to your satisfaction, however, if you are unhappy with our response you can contact the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner who may investigate your complaint further.

Office of the Australian Information Commissioner

[email protected]
Phone: 1300 363 992
Post: GPO Box 5218, Sydney NSW 2001

Policy review

This policy is effective from October 2023 and will be reviewed at least every two years or as otherwise required by law.