Terms and Conditions on Data Protection
“XING” refers to the service provided subject to these General Terms and Conditions and/or XING AG.
The protection of your personal data is of utmost concern to XING.
In these terms and conditions on data protection XING would like to inform you about how XING treats your personal data and how you can exchange this data with other users of XING.
These terms and conditions supplement the General Terms and Conditions for using XING.
1. Basic Principles of XING for handling your Personal Data
XING strictly adheres to the following basic principles in the protection of your Personal Data:
- XING shall collect, process and use your Personal Data in accordance with the laws and statutes on data protection of the Federal Republic of Germany and those of the European Union.
- XING shall use your Personal Data solely to provide you the XING Services on the Internet for which you have registered. XING will never pass your Personal Data on to any third party, neither for advertising, nor for marketing or for any other purposes without your consent.
- With the exception of some general information about your profession you alone decide which of the Personal Data you have made available to XING may be displayed by XING to other members of XING (cf. Section 3 of these Terms and Conditions on Data Protection).
- Persons not registered with XING may only view your Personal Data to the extent that you enable and allow them to do so (cf. Section 4).
The following terms used in these Terms and Conditions on Data Protection shall have the following meanings:
- "Personal Data" shall mean all data and/or information about your profession or your person.
- "XING Websites" shall mean all websites on which XING provides the XING Services.
- "XING Members" shall mean all registered users of XING on the XING Websites.
- "XING Services" shall mean all registration based services provided by XING on the XING Websites.
- "Registration Data" shall mean the Personal Data you are obliged to make available to XING in the registration process for the XING Services (mandatory fields).
- "Profile" shall mean the XING Website where the Personal Data you have made available to XING is displayed in accordance with your specifications and your consent.
3. What does XING know about you, what do you give XING and XING Members permission to do, and what happens with your Personal Data?
3.1 Registration Data
In order for the XING Services to function, XING needs to collect and process certain elements of your Personal Data in the course of the registration process. First of all, this consists of the following data:
Your password and/or your username are never visible to any XING Member at any time. XING shall never disclose or pass your password and/or your username on to any third party.
Furthermore, you will need to fill out certain mandatory fields in the course of the registration process, such as:
- Business e-mail account
- Business telephone number
- First name, last name, form of address
- Date of birth
- Professional status
- Company name
- Position (Title)
- Country, state and city of your company
The following Personal Data from these mandatory fields is accessible to other XING Members without any restrictions:
- First name, last name
- Professional status
- Company name
- Position (Title)
- Country, state and city of your company
With respect to the following mandatory Personal Data, you may choose in each individual case whether the data shall be displayed to a specific other XING Member or not:
- Business e-mail account
- Business telephone number
- Date of birth
3.2 Voluntary Data
If you wish, you may provide additional information about yourself apart from the mandatory data on a voluntary basis (hereinafter referred to as "Voluntary Data"), to allow other XING Members to get to know you better and possibly encourage them to choose you as an appropriate business contact. At the moment, you are able to choose from the following Voluntary Data, for example: your interests, your education, companies you have previously worked for, what you have to offer to other XING Members, what you are looking for from other XING Members, etc. You may also upload a photograph of yourself, if you wish.
The Voluntary Data you choose to provide to XING is accessible to all other XING Members, unless the data is particularly identified. With regard to such particularly identified data you may choose in each individual case if the data shall be displayed to a specific other XING Member.
You can revoke Voluntary Data at any time by deleting the data in question from your profile.
3.3 Your Profile, Contact Management
The following sections of the Personal Data you have made available to XING is visible to all other XING Members:
- First name, last name
- Professional status
- Company name
- Position (Title)
- Country, state and city of your company
All other XING Members may access your Profile and view the information displayed on the Profile, including such Voluntary Data you have specified to be made available to all other XING Members. Certain XING Members may be able to access further of your Voluntary Data in accordance with your specifications (chosen settings) for the respective XING Member in each individual case.
If you send XING Members a request for personal contact, these XING Members are then saved in your Profile on a contact list. Should a XING Member confirm your request for contact, this XING Member shall be listed as a so called "confirmed contact". Confirmed and unconfirmed contacts shall be registered separate from one another. Other XING Members may only ever view your list of confirmed contacts.
XING has set your privacy settings under "Privacy" by default so that your list of confirmed contacts is displayed to all XING Members. However, you may change this setting at any time by yourself to the effect that your list of confirmed contacts is not visible to anybody at all or only to certain of your contacts, for example to the direct contacts of your contacts (i.e. second level contacts) or only to third level or fourth level contacts.
The following of your personal statistics are visible to all XING Members at all times:
- Number of your confirmed contacts
- Number of hits on your Profile
- Month and year of your membership
- Type of membership
On your Profile you will find a so-called activity meter. This meter indicates whether you use the XING Services regularly. However, it does not show any details about the way or the times you use the XING Services. The activity meter is intended as an indication for other XING Members to determine how often you use the XING Services so that the other XING Members can evaluate whether you will presumably react quickly to a request via the XING Services. You may choose to hide the activity meter at any time in your privacy settings under "Privacy" so that the activity meter is not visible to other XING Members.
XING has provided a guest book on your Profile to invite other XING Members to leave a comment if they wish to do so. Entries in the guest book are visible to all other XING Members. XING has set your privacy settings under "Privacy" by default to the effect that a guest book is available and displayed to all XING Members on your Profile. You may change this setting at any time in your privacy settings under "Privacy", if you prefer not to have a guest book on your Profile.
Other XING Members may send you private messages in order to establish contact with you. XING has set your privacy settings under "Privacy" by default so that all XING Members may send you private messages. You may restrict the ability of XING Members to send you private messages at any time to the effect that either no XING Members or only selected contacts may send you private messages, for example only the direct contacts of your contacts (i.e. second level contacts) or only third level or fourth level contacts.
As you can see, XING gives you complete control over your own privacy at all times!
3.4 Your comments
You can like, find interesting and comment on your contacts' activity (hereinafter referred to as "comments"). Your comments are then visible to the network of the contact on whose activity you commented. You can delete your comments at any time.
3.5 Billing details
If you use any of XING's paid services, XING will collect and use your billing details such as your credit card or bank details for billing and payment purposes. To the extent required, your billing details are sent to, collected and processed by service providers such as credit card companies in order to process payments. Your billing details are saved in order to process payments for automatic user account extensions.
4. Visibility of your Profile to Non-Members of XING
Under "Privacy" you can set the level of your privacy at any time. This means that you decide whether to increase your level of privacy or opt in favour of more visibility online, enabling more exposure of your profile for potential business partners. When you register, your default privacy settings rather promote the spirit of networking. The data contained in your profile is visible to non-members of XING and traceable by search engines on the Internet. This, however, does not include personal contact details such as e-mail addresses or phone numbers.
If you signed up to XING before 17.08.2007 the following regulation continues to apply:
Your profile is preset to be invisible to non-members of XING and not traceable by search engines on the Internet. You can, of course, adjust these settings at any time. However, please note that if you do release your profile to non-members or search engines, this will automatically mean that the following sections of your registration data are displayed to non-members of XING: First name, last name, professional status, position (title), previous companies and positions, industry, country, state and city of your company
If your profile shall be visible to non-members of XING or traceable by search engines on the Internet, such voluntary data that you have specified in the settings under "Privacy" to be visible to other XING members will also automatically be visible to non-members of XING. Finally, a maximum of four (4) of your confirmed contacts will automatically be visible, chosen at random. You may prevent the display of these four (4) confirmed contacts at any time by changing the setting for the display of confirmed contacts under "Privacy" to any other setting than "all members".
On the XING Websites, XING offers certain groups, forums and similar services.
Each group has one (1) or more moderator(s). The moderator decides for each group whether the group is public or whether it is only accessible to a specific group of people, as well as who has read and/or write access for each relevant group. This information will be displayed on the XING Websites for the relevant group. It is visible to XING Members and it may also be visible to non-members of XING, depending on the settings chosen by the moderator.
Please note: where a group is specified as "public" on the XING Website and in the event that the moderator has not restricted the access rights to the group, all contributions of XING Members to such a group can be read by all other XING Members, and these contributions are then also accessible to non-members of XING on the Internet without any restrictions. You may deactivate the traceability of your contributions to a group by Internet search engines or by so-called RSS readers in your privacy settings under "Privacy". However, any contributions you posted on the group prior to deactivation will remain visible after the deactivation as well. RSS readers are programs which trace updates of a website, providing the website technically supports the so called RSS standard. Where Internet groups support the RSS standard, the RSS reader may track if, when and which new articles have been published.
6. Appointments, Activities, Event Management
On the XING Websites, XING offers you the possibility to enter your appointments, activities and events as well as similar services (collectively hereinafter referred to as "events"). With this function you may manage and coordinate your events with other XING Members and/or with non-members of XING, and you may also invite other XING Members and/or non-members to specific events.
Each event has one (1) or more hosts (organizers). The host decides for each event if and which information about the event is visible to other XING Members and/or for non-members of XING. Among other things, this information may include whether the event is reserved to XING Members or whether it is a public event and as such accessible to non-members, whether the number of participants is limited, whether the guest list is visible without any restrictions or if and which restrictions should apply to the visibility of the guest list. The above information shall be displayed on the XING Websites for the relevant event. It is visible to XING Members, and it may also be visible to non-members, depending on the settings chosen by the host.
7. API and data processing on behalf of users
XING provides the XING API to selected developers and companies ("API Partners") so that they can develop and manage applications that grant users of API Partner applications access to data and content beyond the XING platform while also allowing said users to integrate external content on the XING platform. The aim of integrating external applications is to make XING more appealing and useful to users. API stands for Application Programming Interface, meaning that the XING API is an interface provided by XING that allows API partners to integrate one or more applications on the XING platform provided they adhere to XING’s contractual terms. XING Members are required to provide their consent before using any of the applications.
API Partners are required to register on XING and enter into an agreement with XING that governs both the rights and duties of both parties. The API Partners are in particular required to give their consent in terms of accessing, saving and using personal data. XING AG requires contractual agreements and has made technical provisions to prevent API Partners from potentially misusing personal data.
Every API Partner application that accesses the data and content of XING Members requires the prior consent of XING AG. XING has therefore compiled a list of criteria in order to ensure that XING Member data is both safe and secure.
XING provides its members with services allowing them to process their own data and/or that of third parties. If you activate such a XING application or service, you are responsible for the personal data processed on your behalf. XING provides you with features for managing and, in particular, for deleting data that XING processes on your behalf. You have the right and option to terminate personal data processing on your behalf at any time.
As a XING Member you may invite others to join XING. XING shall process personal data collected in the course of the invitation on behalf of the XING member solely for expanding their network, e.g. through contact suggestions, and shall not use it for any other purposes.
XING will send a reminder e-mail ("automatic reminder") on behalf of the XING member to the recipient of the invitation 21 days after you send the invitation. You can deactivate the automatic reminder feature in your settings. You are also able to send out manual reminder e-mails in addition to the automatic reminder feature. XING only saves encrypted copies of the e-mail addresses to which you send invitations. This encryption is removed temporarily when you view these e-mail addresses in your XING account. You can delete the data in your account at any time. Invitation recipients have the right to revoke the use of their e-mail address for invitation purposes at any time.
Please note that the following sections of your Personal Data are displayed to the recipient of the invitation:
- Your name
- Your company name
- Your position
- Your e-mail address
- Your photograph
- Your membership status
9. What does "Clickpath" mean?
"Clickpath" is a function of the XING Services which registers access to XING Members’ Profiles by other XING Members or access to specific information within XING Members’ Profiles. The information registered by Clickpath is only available to Premium Members of XING.
By using Clickpath you can see which Profiles of other XING Members you have visited. You can also check which other XING Members have visited your Profile. By the same token, all other Premium Members of XING can do the same, i.e. they may see whether you have visited their Profile. This feature is an essential part of contact management on XING and as such an essential feature of the XING Services: you are not able to deactivate this feature in your privacy settings. If you do not agree that other XING Members may see that you have visited their Profile, you should not use the XING Services.
Furthermore, Clickpath registers which XING Members have visited your XING "About me" page which you can set up within the framework of XING Services, and which XING Members have visited the website of one of your previous companies.
Any information registered by Clickpath is deleted by XING automatically within one (1) week after its registration.
10. Search Functions
The XING Services offer various possibilities to search for particular XING Members, including a Power Search feature and a Search Agent feature. These various search functions may assist you, for example, in finding other XING Members with similar interests. The search functions can also help you to initiate contact with other XING Members who offer exactly what you are looking for. Thus, you can find the contacts you need - and systematically expand your personal network.
11. Newsletter, weekly status e-mails
XING regularly sends out newsletters or weekly status e-mails (collectively hereinafter referred to as the "newsletter(s)") to all XING Members. In these newsletters XING may inform you, among other things, about new features on XING, about your events in the upcoming week, and XING may also provide you with specific personal statistics from the respective past calendar week (i.e. the number of hits on your Profile, whether you have new contacts to be confirmed and/or new private messages, etc.).
Finally, XING may inform you about three (3) random XING Members who have visited your Profile in the past week. Of course, this may also apply to yourself vice versa, i.e. you may be one of those random XING Members with regard to another XING Member whose Profile you have visited in the past week.
You may choose to unsubscribe from the newsletter at any time by changing you notification settings on XING or by sending an e-mail to the link provided at the end of each newsletter without costs arising by virtue thereof, other than transmission costs pursuant to the basic rates.
12. Cookies and pixels
"Cookies" are small files that enable us to store specific information related to you, the User, on your PC or other end device while using the XING services. Cookies help to analyze usage frequency, the number of people who use our website, user behavior on our website, advertising effectiveness, and to increased security and tailor our service offering to your needs.
After you have logged in to the XING Services with your username and password, XING uses so-called "session cookies" in order to identify you during the course of your session. Upon the termination of your session, the session cookie will be automatically deleted. You can save session cookies on your computer to enable automatic login for subsequent sessions by activating the function: "Login automatically on this computer". Session cookies will then store parts of your login data in encrypted form. If you select automatic login, please be aware that this will then only be possible on the same computer on which the cookie was first saved, i.e. an automatic login on two (2) different computers is not possible.
XING Services also use "permanent cookies" to record information about visitors to the XING Websites who repeatedly use the XING Services. Permanent cookies are designed to help us continually improve the products and services we offer you. Permanent cookies do not contain personal information such as your name, IP address, etc., meaning that we do not generate profiles based on user behavior.
You can edit the settings of your browser to prevent cookies from being stored, to limit the storage of cookies to certain websites, or such that your browser informs you every time a cookie is sent. You can also delete cookies from your PC’s hard drive at any time. However, please note that you will not be able to take advantage of the XING Services if session cookies are deactivated.
Third-party cookies could also be stored on your PC or end device when using XING and/or XING applications which are partially or entirely provided by third parties. You can prevent such cookies from being stored in your browser by adjusting the browser settings accordingly.
We also use pixel-based and cookie-based conversion tracking technologies in order to be able to measure the success of our advertising campaigns, for example. To this end we use technologies provided by Google, Yahoo!, Bing etc. The following links contain information these providers have published with regard to cookies and opting out:
Yahoo!/Bing: Opt out of personalized advertising
NEXT AUDIENCE: Privacy information
The following information also applies to users in Germany:
Our website uses the "Scalable Centralized Measurement System" ("Skalierbares zentrales Messverfahren – SZM") developed by INFOnline in order to enable us to gather statistical information about the use of our website. Anonymous data is collected for this purpose. For the purpose of recognizing computer systems, the SZM method of audience measurement either uses a cookie with the identifier “ivwbox.de” or a signature which is created on the basis of various data automatically relayed by your computer. This method does not store IP addresses; these are processed in an anonymized form only.
The audience measurement method has been developed in accordance with the data protection regulations. The objective of audience measurement is to statistically determine the intensity of use and the number of users of a particular website. Specific users are not identified at any stage. Your identity always remains protected. No advertising will be communicated to you via this system.
Websites, the operators of which are members of the Informationsgemeinschaft zur Feststellung der Verbreitung von Werbeträgern e.V. (IVW – German Information Association for Determining the Circulation of Advertising Media) or which participate in the “internet facts” survey organised by Arbeitsgemeinschaft Online-Forschung e.V. (AGOF – German Working Group for Online Media Research), will have their utilization statistics published monthly by the AGOF and the Arbeitsgemeinschaft Media-Analyse e.V. (German Media Analysis Working Group) as well as by the IVW. This information can be viewed at http://www.agof.de, http://www.agma-mmc.de and http://www.ivw.eu.
Apart from publishing the recorded data, the IVW regularly reviews the SZM method to ensure that its use complies with legal and data protection regulations.
More information on the SZM method is available from the website of INFOnline GmbH, which operates the SZM method, the data protection webpage of the AGOF and the data protection webpage of the IVW.
If you wish to object to the processing of data via the SZM method, please click on the following link: http://optout.ivwbox.de
Interest- and behavior-related information and advertising
On our Websites we also use technologies to show you information and advertising based on your interests and behavior. To do so, we use data-protection-friendly technologies based on data anonymization and pseudonymization. To this end, we use an external service provider who gathers on our behalf certain information about your activities on our Websites. Said service provider is never able to assign the information it gathers to a specific person, and IP addresses are immediately anonymized. Said service provider never stores Personal Data. Instead it performs calculations based on this and other non-personal information, which we then receive as recommendations for showing your information or advertising based on your interests and behavior.
If you would no longer like to receive such information or advertising, you can click on the link below to revoke your permission and deactivate data collection by setting an opt-out cookie:
Please note that data will again be collected should you delete the opt-out cookie.
13. Log Files/Mobile Handshake
Each time you access a website from the XING Websites, XING will save the following data in a log file (the so called "server log"):
- The time, status, and amount of the transferred data, as well as the website from which you have reached the requested page of the XING Websites (the so-called "referrer")
- The product and release information from your Internet browser (the so called "user agent").
This log file will be stored by XING in the standardized "combined" log file format for the Apache web server. XING will not store your IP address once you leave the XING Websites. Except for legislation regarding the storage of data, Users’ IP addresses will be deleted or anonymized once they end their session on the XING Websites. Anonymization means that IP addresses are modified in such a way that specific personal and/or factual information cannot be attributed to a certain identified or identifiable person or can only be attributed by deploying a disproportionately large amount of time, effort and cost.
XING uses the data from this log file in anonymous form without reference to your person for statistical purposes. In doing so, XING may analyze on which days and at which time the XING Websites are particularly frequented and how much data volume is created on the XING Websites. Furthermore, by using the log file, XING can identify defects on the XING Websites, such as defective hyperlinks or program defects, and thus continually improve the quality of the XING Websites. XING does not attribute the website demands stored in the log file to specific individual users. However, XING reserves the right to review the log files if XING has reasonable cause to believe that the member is using XING Services and/or XING Websites in breach of contractual agreements or the applicable legislation. In doing this, XING is protecting other XING Members, the safety of XING Members’ data, as well as XING Websites and the XING Services.
The "Mobile Handshake" function allows you to see if there are XING Members in your vicinity who are also using this function. It allows other XING Members to find you if you have the "Mobile Handshake" function activated. To do this, XING needs to determine your location for a short period of time. In doing so, XING saves your position (longitude and latitude) and the point in time at which you used the "Mobile Handshake" function in its server log file. This information is only stored while XING determines your location. Once this process has been completed, your data will be deleted or anonymized.
Membership of XING Services is reserved for persons who have reached the legal age of 18. Parents and legal guardians are responsible for the protection of their children's privacy.
15. Accessibility of these Terms and Conditions on Data Protection
These Terms and Conditions on Data Protection are accessible from any website of the XING Websites under the link "Data Protection".