The OST – Eastern Switzerland University of Applied Sciences (hereinafter also «we» or «us») processes data relating to you or other individuals («third parties»). We use the term «data» in this policy to mean «personal data» or «personal details».
- On our website www.ost.ch;
- As part of studies/teaching;
- As part of continuing education;
- As part of research and services.
Who is responsible for processing your data?
The data controller is:
OST – Eastern Switzerland University of Applied Sciences
+41 58 257 41 11
Do you have specific questions regarding how we handle your data? We would be happy to help you.
What is our foundation for processing your data?
Where we are asking for your consent to process your data in certain ways, we will also provide you with specific information regarding the purpose of the processing. You can withdraw your consent at any time with future effect by writing to us (by post or email). As soon as we receive a message stating that your consent has been withdrawn, we will cease to process your data for the purposes to which you originally consented, unless there is another legal basis for doing so. The legality of any processing performed on the basis of your consent up until its revocation shall not be affected. The legal basis for your consent shall particularly come into play in the following circumstances:
- Disclosure of data;
- Analyzing personal data for research and marketing purposes;
In situations where we do not ask for consent to process your data, if needs be the processing of your data will be based on the fact that said processing is necessary in order to initiate or execute a contract with you. Data processing is conducted to enable us to perform our services as part of implementation of our contracts (e.g. in the area of continuing education and relating to our services) with our clients, or to implement specifically requested precontractual measures. The purpose of data processing is primarily based on the specific service and may include activities such as training or consulting.
We or a third party may also have a legitimate interest in the processing. Our legitimate interests in particular include compliance with statutory provisions, insofar as these have not already been identified as a legal basis by applicable data protection legislation. In particular, we process personal data under a public contract based on a specific legal basis or in order to fulfill a legal responsibility.
If we receive sensitive data (e.g. health data, details of political, religious or ideological views, or biometric data that would enable identification), we are also able to process your data on the basis of other legal foundations, e.g. in the event of disputes regarding the need for processing in any particular process or for enforcing or defending legal claims. Other legal grounds may come into effect in individual cases, which we will communicate to you separately if necessary.
What data do we process?
The personal data types that we process as standard include the following:
- Inventory and identity verification data (e.g. name, date and place of birth, citizenship, registration number)
- Contact details (e.g. email, postal address, telephone numbers)
- Content data (e.g. text entries, performance record)
- Usage data (e.g. websites visited, access times, click behavior)
- Contractual data (e.g. payment details)
- Process data (e.g. data regarding appeals and other legal proceedings)
- Qualification data (e.g. performance evaluation, certificate)
- Research data (e.g. survey information)
- Particularly sensitive personal data (e.g. health data)
- Metadata / communication data (e.g. IP addresses, device information)
- Server log files (e.g. browser type and version, operating system used, referrer URL, host name of accessing computer, time of server inquiry)
For what purpose do we process your data?
Teaching, research, services and continuing education
We offer teaching, research and services across multiple disciplines and specialist areas. In doing so we promote the exchange of knowledge, skills and technology for the benefit of business and society. In particular, we offer the following:
- Preparation via practical courses for professional activities that require the use of scientific knowledge and methods;
- Supplementing courses of this kind with continuing education opportunities;
- Implementing application-oriented research and development activities;
- Services for third parties.
We also process your data for the purpose of communicating with you, in order to contact you in the event of any queries. We store this data in order to document our communications with you, for quality assurance, and for inquiries. We also process data in order to begin, administer and execute contractual relationships.
In addition, we process personal data to ensure compliance with laws, directives and recommendations from authorities and internal regulations, for the purpose of our risk management activities, and as part of diligent corporate management as a public sector entity, including corporate planning and business development.
We may also process your data for other purposes, e.g. as part of internal processes and administration.
We may collect data from you in order to display and optimize our website content whilst also ensuring data security. The same applies to the analysis of website use and to compliance with regulatory and statutory provisions. If you use the relevant functionality, we also process data for the following purposes:
- To contact you (e.g. to arrange an appointment)
- Regular information about what we offer (e.g. newsletter)
- Interactions regarding our services and website content (e.g. live chat, social media)
- Other specified use
This includes using accepted encryption methods (e.g. encryption via SSL/TLS). Security measures are continually being improved based on the latest technological developments.
We process data for marketing purposes and for public relations, e.g. in order to provide our customers and other contractual partners with personalized advertising regarding products and services offered by us and third parties. This may take the form of newsletters and other regular forms of contact, as well as individual marketing campaigns (e.g. events, competitions, etc.). You can decline contact of this kind at any time, or refuse or revoke consent to being contacted for advertising purposes. By granting your consent, you enable us to tailor our online advertising more specifically to you.
We further process your data for market research, to improve our services and operations, and for product development.
We would be happy to keep you updated on current topics relating to OST – Eastern Switzerland University of Applied Sciences and our products via our newsletter. If you would like to receive the newsletter offered via our website, we need an email address from you as well as information that enables us to confirm that you are the owner of the email address provided and have consented to receive the newsletter.
We use this data exclusively for sending out the requested information and will not pass it on to third parties. The consent granted for storing your data and email address and using them to send the newsletter can be revoked at any time, e.g. via the “unsubscribe” link in the newsletter.
Our magazine subscription keeps you updated about current topics relating to OST – Eastern Switzerland University of Applied Sciences and its activities in all areas: applied research and development, continuing education, teaching and services. If you would like to receive the free OSTpunkt magazine, we need a postal and email address as well as information that enables us to confirm that you are the owner of the email address provided and have consented to receive the OSTpunkt magazine (available digitally via email or as a physical copy by post). Following successful registration, with each issue you will receive an accompanying letter giving you a personal code and QR code that you can use to process your data, for example.
We use your data exclusively for sending out the OSTpunkt magazine or for providing you with information relating to the OSTpunkt magazine (e.g. subscription changes). We will not pass your data on, either internally for further marketing purposes or to third parties. The consent granted for storing your data and email address and using them to send the OSTpunkt magazine can be revoked at any time. To do so, either enter your personal code at www.ost.ch/abo and amend your data or cancel your subscription yourself, or if you prefer, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you ask us a question via the contact form, your information from the contact form – including the contact details provided within it – will be stored by us for the purposes of processing the inquiry and in the event of follow-up questions. This data will not be passed on to others without your consent.
Online tracking and online advertising techniques
Our website uses various technologies that enable us and third parties commissioned by us to recognize you from your behavior and under some circumstances to track you across multiple visits. This section offers further information about such technologies.
In essence, we are able to distinguish between access by you (via your system) and access by other users, so that we can ensure the website’s functionality and perform analyses and customizations. In doing so we are not seeking to reveal your identity, even if we could do so in that we or third parties commissioned by us could identify you by matching information to your registration data. Even without registration data, the technologies used are designed to recognize you as an individual user each time you access a page, by our server (or the third party’s server) assigning a specific tag number (known as a “cookie”) to you or your browser.
Cookies are small text files that are deposited and stored on your device (laptop, tablet, smartphone or similar) via your browser. They are used to make our website’s design more user-friendly and effective, and to ensure that your visit to our website is as pleasant as possible. Cookies do not damage your device. They cannot run programs and do not contain any viruses.
We use such technologies on our website and permit certain third parties to do the same. You can program your browser to block or fool certain cookies or alternative technologies, or delete existing cookies. You can also add software to your browser that blocks tracking by some third parties. Further information about this can be found on your browser’s help pages (generally under “privacy”) or on the websites of the third parties listed below.
We distinguish between the following types of cookies (here also used to mean technologies with comparable functionality, such as fingerprinting):
Essential cookies: Some cookies are essential for the functionality of the website itself or of particular functions. For example, they ensure that you can switch between pages without losing the information you have entered in a form. They also ensure that you remain logged in. These cookies are only temporary (“session cookies”). If you block these, the website may not function properly. Other cookies are required for the server to be able to store decisions you have made or information you have entered beyond a session (i.e. a visit to the website), if you request this functionality (e.g. language selected, consent provided, automatic login function, etc.).
Our website uses various services provided by Google LLC, based in the USA, or if your habitual place of residence is in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland, by Google Ireland Limited based in Ireland (hereinafter Google). Google Analytics uses “cookies”. The information regarding the user’s website usage (including IP address) generated by the “cookie” may in some cases be transferred to a Google server in the USA and stored there.
Google has stated that data may be processed in countries where Google or Google’s subprocessors maintain facilities. Google undertakes to ensure an appropriate level of data protection, based on the EU standard contractual clauses. Although no conclusive guarantee is provided ensuring appropriateness under Swiss or European law, Google is also certified under the Swiss-US and EU-US Privacy Shield agreement.
Google will use this information to analyze your use of our website, compile reports regarding website activities, and provide us with additional services associated with use of the website and the internet. Google may also pass this information on to third parties if required by law or where said third parties are processing the data on behalf of Google. Google will never link up the user’s IP address with other Google data.
We only use Google Analytics with active IP anonymization. To achieve this, IP addresses are shortened by Google within Switzerland or the EU/EEA before being transmitted to the USA. Only in exceptional cases is the full IP address transmitted to one of Google’s servers in the USA for shortening there.
Users can set their browser’s software to prevent cookies from being installed. However, we would advise users that if they do so, they may not be able to make full use of the website’s functionality. Users can also prevent Google from capturing and processing data by downloading and installing the browser add on available at this link.
The following link explains to users how Google uses the data it collects.
Furthermore, we make no provisions to use the personal data gained from Google Analytics for personal identification purposes, with the following exceptions:
- Defense against attacks that constitute criminal offenses;
- Attacks that seek to impede or impair the functionality of our website;
- Inquiries from law enforcement authorities;
- For marketing purposes and to improve our service provision.
The information regarding usage of this website (including your IP address) collected via cookies and web beacons and regarding the supply of advertising formats is delivered to a Google server in the USA and stored there (see section above on Google Analytics for associated guarantees). Google may pass this information onto its contractual partners. However, Google will not match your IP address up with other data they have stored regarding you.
You can set your browser’s software to prevent cookies from being installed. However, we would advise you that if you do so, you may not be able to make full use of the website’s functionality. By using this website, you are giving your consent for the data collected about you by Google as described above to be processed for the aforementioned purposes.
We use Google Ads, an online advertising program forming part of Google Marketing services and provided by Google LLC, based in the USA, or if your habitual place of residence is in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland, by Google Ireland Limited based in Ireland (hereinafter Google).
Google Ads places a cookie (“conversion cookie”) on your computer if you access our website via a Google advertisement. These cookies have limited validity, do not contain any personal data, and thus are not used for personal identification. If you visit particular websites of ours and the cookie has not yet expired, we and Google can see that you have clicked on the advert to reach our website. Every Google Ads client contains a different cookie, so cookies cannot be tracked via the websites of Ads clients. The information collected using conversion cookies is used by Google to create conversion statistics for Ads clients who have opted for conversion tracking. These statistics show us the total number of users who have clicked on our adverts, and also which of our websites the relevant user subsequently visits. We do not receive any information that would enable us to personally identify you.
Interest-based categories will be assigned to your browser on the basis of the information collected. These categories are used to place interest-based advertisements.
Using Google Ads enables us to reach users who have previously visited our website. This means that we can present our advertising to target groups who are already interested in our services.
You can prevent any cookies from being stored by deactivating cookie storage in your browser. You can also turn off interest-based advertising from Google Ads by applying the relevant settings.
Further information about Google Ads can be found in Google’s Privacy & Terms
Facebook Pixel, Custom Audiences und Facebook-Conversions
Our website uses Facebook Pixel, a service provided by Meta Platforms Inc., based in the USA, or if your habitual place of residence is in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland, by Meta Platforms Ireland Limited based in Ireland (hereinafter “Meta”). Instagram is also a Meta service.
Using Facebook Pixel, Meta can identify visitors to our website as a target group for displaying advertisements (“Facebook Ads” or “Instagram Ads”). We therefore use Facebook Pixel to ensure that the Facebook and Instagram ads we place are only displayed to users who have also shown an interest in our website or who have demonstrated certain characteristics (e.g. interest in certain topics or products, determined by the websites they have visited) that we communicate to Meta (“custom audiences”). Via Facebook Pixel, we also seek to ensure that our Facebook and Instagram ads match users’ potential interests and are not viewed as annoying. In addition, Facebook Pixel also enables us to understand the effectiveness of Facebook and Instagram advertisements for statistical and market research purposes, in that we can see when a user is forwarded to our website by clicking on a Facebook or Instagram advertisement (“conversions”).
Furthermore, we use the additional “automatic advanced matching” function when deploying Facebook Pixel. This means that data such as telephone numbers, email addresses, date of birth or postcode are sent to Meta in encrypted form as additional information, where you have made this data available to us. This allows us to increase the number of assigned “conversions” and to expand our “custom audiences”. Further information on “automatic advanced matching” can be found on Facebook’s relevant help pages.
By using cookies, Meta can subsequently recognize you in the Facebook or Instagram members’ area and optimize the efficiency of advertisements, e.g. by providing ads tailored to target groups. This requires you to have a Facebook and/or Instagram account and to be logged into the respective members’ area. If you are not a member of Facebook or Instagram, you are not affected by this data processing.
Our website uses Microsoft Advertising (formerly Bing Ads), an online marketing service provided by Microsoft Online Inc., based in the USA, or if your habitual place of residence is in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland, by Microsoft Ireland Operations Limited based in Ireland (hereinafter “Microsoft”).
We have integrated Microsoft’s universal event tracking (UET) tag into our website. This tag allows us to analyze your use of the website, if you access the website via a Microsoft advertisement (“conversion measurement”). To enable this, Microsoft cookies are stored on your device when you click on a Microsoft advertisement. This permits both Microsoft and us to identify that someone has clicked on an advertisement, been forwarded to our website, and reached a specific target page (“conversion page”). We are only made aware of the number of users who have clicked on an advertisement placed with Microsoft and then been forwarded to the conversion page. We do not receive any information that would enable us to personally identify you.
If you do not wish to participate in Microsoft Advertising tracking processes, you can deactivate the required cookie storage via settings in your browser, or use Microsoft’s “ad settings” opt-out page.
Further information about data protection and Microsoft Advertising is available in Microsoft’s privacy statement and on the Microsoft Advertising website.
Google Tag Manager
We also use Google Tag Manager to integrate and administer Google analysis and marketing services on our website. Google Tag Manager is a solution enabling us to administer website tags via an interface.
Google Tag Manager itself, which implements the tags, is a cookie-free domain and does not record any personal data. However, the tool triggers other tags that may record your personal data in some circumstances. Google Tag Manager itself does not access this data. If deactivation has been performed at domain or cookie level, this remains in place for all tracking tags implemented using Google Tag Manager. Further information can be found in the terms of service: https://marketingplatform.google.com/intl/en/about/analytics/tag-manager/use-policy/.
If you wish to turn off interest-based advertising from Google Marketing Services, you can use the setting and opt-out options provided by Google.
Google IP shortening
We have activated the IP shortening function on this website. This means that your IP address is shortened by Google in a member state of the European Union or another signatory state to the European Economic Area agreement before being transmitted to the USA. Only in exceptional cases is the full IP address transmitted to one of Google’s servers in the USA for shortening there. Google will use this information, on behalf of this website operator, to analyze your use of the website, compile reports regarding website activities and provide additional services associated with website and Internet use via the website operator. The IP address transmitted by your browser for the purposes of Google Analytics is not combined with other Google data.
The “Fusedeck” tracking solution from Capture Media AG (hereinafter “Capture Media”) is integrated into this website. Capture Media is a Swiss company based in Zürich that measures use of this website as part of engagements and events. Tracking is anonymous, meaning that no link can be drawn with identified or identifiable individuals.
The “Privent” registration and event tool from Privent AG, Tübach is integrated into this website. If you register for an event, “Privent” will collect personal information as part of the registration process.
Other services we use
This website uses the Google Maps service provided by Google LLC, based in the USA (“Google”). This allows us to display interactive maps directly on the website and offers you convenient use of the map functionality.
When using Google Maps, the information regarding usage of our website (including your IP address) may be delivered to a Google server in the USA and stored there (see section above on Google Analytics for associated guarantees). Google may store this data as a usage profile for the purposes of needs-based design for services, advertising and market research. If you are logged in to Google, your data will be assigned directly to your account. If you do not wish this to happen, you must first log out. If you do not agree to your data being processed, you can deactivate the Google Maps service and thus prevent the data from being transferred to Google. You must deactivate the Java Script function in your browser to do so. However, please note that in this event, you will not be able to use Google Maps or will only be able to use it to a limited extent.
We use the web analysis service “Hotjar” from Hotjar Ltd., a European company based in Malta.
We use Hotjar to enable us to better understand the needs of visitors to our website and for the purposes of optimization, marketing, and ensuring website design that suits relevant interests. Hotjar enables us to track movement on the website (“heat maps”). Hotjar provides us with information regarding where the mouse moves, what buttons are clicked on, where users scroll, the size of the screen on the device used, the type of device used, and details of the browser type. We also receive information about your location (country only) and your preferred language for displaying our website.
This information enables us to ensure a quicker, more customer-friendly design for our website. Hotjar saves this information under a pseudonymized user profile. Neither we nor Hotjar will use the information to identify individual users, nor will we collate it with other data about individual users. Areas of the website that display personal information about you or third parties are automatically hidden by Hotjar, and thus cannot at any point be tracked via the tool.
LinkedIn Insight Tag
We use the tool «LinkedIn Insight Tag», of the Irish LinkedIn Ireland Unlimited Company (hereinafter «LinkedIn»). LinkedIn is owned by Microsoft Online Inc. with headquarters in the USA.
We use LinkedIn to measure the effectiveness of advertising campaigns. In addition, LinkedIn offers the possibility of retargeting via the Insight Tag. We can thus use this data to display targeted advertising outside our website without identifying you as a website visitor. LinkedIn permanently stores a cookie on your terminal device, which enables the collection of the following data, among others: IP address, device and browser properties, and page events (e.g. page views). This data is encrypted, anonymized within seven days, and the anonymized data is deleted within 90 days. LinkedIn does not share personally identifiable information with the OST, but provides anonymized reports on website audience and ad success.
If you do not wish to participate in the tracking process, you can deactivate the setting of a cookie required for this via browser settings or use LinkedIn's opt-out page.
What data do we process on our social media pages?
We operate social media profiles on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Xing and YouTube.
The data provided by you on our social media profiles is published by the social media platform and is not used or processed by us for other purposes at any time. However, we reserve the right to delete content should this be necessary. We will communicate with you via the social media platform if need be. The basis for this is your and our legitimate interest in communicating via this method.
You should be aware that social media platform operators use web tracking methods. Web tracking, which is outside of our control, may occur regardless of whether you are registered with or logged on to the social media platform.
Our website also uses plugins from YouTube, a website operated by Google. The website operator is YouTube, LLC, 901 Cherry Ave., San Bruno, CA 94066, USA. If you visit one of our pages containing a YouTube plugin, a connection will be established with YouTube’s servers. The YouTube server is informed that you have visited our pages.
If you are logged in to your YouTube account, YouTube will be able to link your browsing behavior directly to your personal profile. You can prevent this from happening by logging out of your YouTube account.
To whom do we disclose your data?
Within OST, access to your data is granted to positions that require it in order to fulfill our contractual and statutory obligations. Service providers commissioned by us may also receive data for this same purpose. This includes companies in the fields of IT, logistics, printing services, telecommunications, consulting, and sales and marketing.
The recipients of personal data include:
- Public authorities and institutions (e.g. law enforcement authorities or the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation) if there is a statutory or official obligation.
- Institutions within OST for risk management purposes on the basis of a statutory or official obligation.
- IT service providers (e.g. web hosting provider, email service provider, online tools).
- Contractual partners with whom we are collaborating or who operate advertising for us and to whom we therefore send data about you for analysis and marketing purposes (these may be service consumers, or online advertising providers). We stipulate that these partners may only send you advertising or make use of your data if you have provided your consent.
Other recipients: Other cases where third parties may be included for the purposes stated in section 3.
Other data recipients may include positions for which you have granted your consent to data transfer.
All of these recipient categories may consult third parties, meaning that your data is also made accessible to them. We can limit processing by some third parties (e.g. IT providers), but not by others (e.g. authorities).
Is your personal data sent abroad?
Depending on the type of product or service, personal data and recipients in countries without an appropriate level of data protection must be declared. In the event of transfer to such a country, we required the recipient to take appropriate measures to protect personal data (e.g. by agreeing to the EU standard contractual clauses, other arrangements, or based on justification).
The following data disclosure abroad applies:
- Google Analytics/AdSense/Ads (Google LLC), based in the USA, or if clients’ habitual place of residence is in the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland, by Google Ireland Limited based in Ireland (see above)
How long do we process your data for?
We process your data for as long as required for our processing purposes, statutory retention periods, and our legitimate interests in processing for the purposes of documentation and proof, or for as long as storage is technically feasible. Unless prevented by statutory or contractual obligations, we delete or anonymize your data once the storage or processing period has elapsed as part of our standard processes.
How do we protect your data?
We take appropriate security measures to ensure the confidentiality, integrity and availability of your personal data, to protect it against unauthorized or unlawful processing, and to counter the risk of loss, inadvertent alteration, accidental disclosure or unauthorized access.
What are your rights?
To make it easier to monitor processing of your personal data, you have the following rights relating to our data processing in accordance with applicable data protection law:
- The right to request information regarding if and what data we are processing regarding you;
- The right to correct data if it is incorrect;
- The right to request that data be deleted;
- The right to request that certain personal data be published in a standard electronic format or transferred to another responsible party;
- The right to revoke consent, where our processing is based on your consent;
- The right, upon request, to obtain further information required to exercise these rights;
- The right, in the event of automated individual decisions (if used), to define your position and request that the decision be reviewed by an individual;
- In some circumstances, applicable data protection legislation also gives you the right to reject processing of your data, in particular for the purposes of direct marketing, profiling for direct advertising, and other legitimate interests in processing;
- The right to block the disclosure of data, if the person affected has a legitimate interest;
- The right to limit data processing and attach a corresponding note, if neither accuracy nor inaccuracy can be proved;
- The right to freedom from unlawful processing of data;
- The right to determine unlawful processing;
- The right to eliminate the consequences of unlawful processing.
If you would like to exercise the rights above, please get in touch with us – our contact details can be found in section 1. In order to avoid abuse, we must be able to identify you (e.g. via a copy of your passport, if no other option is available).
Please note that provisions, exceptions and limitations apply to these rights under applicable data privacy law (e.g. in order to protect third parties or trade secrets). You will be informed of these if relevant.
If you do not consent to our handling of your rights or data protection, please inform us. If you are in the EEA, the United Kingdom or Switzerland, you are also entitled to lodge a complaint with your country’s data protection authorities.