Privacy policy

Who we are

Humanist Society Scotland is based at Playfair House, 6 Broughton Street Lane, Edinburgh, EH1 3LY. For more information about how Humanist Society Scotland manages its responsibilities regarding data protection under GDPR, please contact the Operations Manager on 0300 302 0680 or

Our website address is:

What personal data we collect and why we collect it

We collect the information that you provide when signing up as a member or supporter, or that you volunteer when filling in enquiry forms or petitions on our website. This may include personal data, such as name, email address, and other information that you volunteer, such as your ceremony details.

We do this in order to create your membership, record your interest, or ensure we can provide the service that you’ve requested.

We collect financial information for the purpose of passing these securely to our payment processors. We do not at any point have access to your complete financial information.

Legal basis for processing

Membership activities: Where you provide us with information to create or renew a membership, we will process information under the legal basis of fulfilment of a contract.

Ceremonies: Where you provide us with information to enquire about and arrange a ceremony, either centrally or with one of our HSS Registered Celebrants, we (or the Celebrant as a contractor of Humanist Society Scotland) will process information under the legal basis of fulfilment of a contract.

Campaigns & other communications: We will always ask for your consent in order to contact you regarding campaigns. We may send other non-marketing communications to you, for example in relation to your membership or the governance of our organisation, such as notifying you of an upcoming event. We will do so on the basis of legitimate interest where we believe that it is fair and balanced to do so, and that it is within your reasonable expectation for us to do so.


Our own cookies

We use cookies to make our website work including:

  • Determining if you are logged in or not
  • Remembering your search settings
  • Remembering if we have already asked you certain questions (e.g. you declined to use our app or take our survey)

There is no way to prevent these cookies being set other than to not use our site.

Third party functions

Our site, like most websites, includes functionality provided by third parties. A common example is an embedded YouTube video. Our site includes the following which use cookies:

Disabling these cookies will likely break the functions offered by these third parties.

Social Website Cookies

So you can easily “Like” or share our content on the likes of Facebook and Twitter we have included sharing buttons on our site.

The privacy implications on this will vary from social network to social network and will be dependent on the privacy settings you have chosen on these networks.

Anonymous Visitor Statistics Cookies

We use cookies to compile visitor statistics such as how many people have visited our website, what type of technology they are using (e.g. Mac or Windows which helps to identify when our site isn’t working as it should for particular technologies), how long they spend on the site, what page they look at etc. This helps us to continuously improve our website. These so called “analytics” programs also tell us if , on an anonymous basis, how people reached this site (e.g. from a search engine), how they use the website, and whether they have been here before helping us to put more money into developing our services for you instead of marketing spend.

We use:

  • Google Analytics
  • HotJar

Turning Cookies Off

You can usually switch cookies off by adjusting your browser settings to stop it from accepting cookies. Doing so however will likely limit the functionality of our’s and a large proportion of the world’s websites as cookies are a standard part of most modern websites

It may be that you concerns around cookies relate to so called “spyware”. Rather than switching off cookies in your browser you may find that anti-spyware software achieves the same objective by automatically deleting cookies considered to be invasive. Learn more about managing cookies with antispyware software.

Embedded content from other websites

Articles on this site may include embedded content (e.g. videos, images, articles, etc.). Embedded content from other websites behaves in the exact same way as if the visitor has visited the other website.

These websites may collect data about you, use cookies, embed additional third-party tracking, and monitor your interaction with that embedded content, including tracing your interaction with the embedded content if you have an account and are logged in to that website.

How long we retain your data

We will store your data for seven years after the date of your last membership transaction (with the exception of our life members) in order to comply with the requirements of our financial records. Otherwise we will retain your membership information for six years after receipt of a cancellation request.

Users that sign up as members via our website can see, edit, or delete their personal information at any time (except they cannot change their username).

Where we send and how we share your data

We share your information with our payment processors for the purposes of completing financial transactions:

We make use of Google’s G Suite products for email and data storage in the course of our day-to-day activities. They are based outside the EEA and are participant in the Privacy Shield programme.

Our website and CRM are hosted by in partnership with hosting companies SiteGround and NativeSpace. Information provided to us during registration and subsequently when authenticated on the site may be logged and stored securely by them for the purposes of tracing any site errors. They are bound by the same conditions of privacy and will not use or transmit your personal information for any other purposes.

We may also disclose your information to third parties if we are compelled to by law or to comply with any legal obligation.

What rights you have over your data

You can also request that we erase any personal data we hold about you. This does not include any data we are obliged to keep for administrative, legal, or security purposes.

You can request a copy of your personal information by making a Subject Access Request. Please send this via email to, or by contacting the society at the details given above.

How we protect your data

Humanist Society Scotland enforces strict IT security policies within its offices. This includes:

  • Use of password management software for all staff
  • Cloud-based user management across all devices, including virus and malware detection and removal software
  • Cloud-based file sharing via G Suite
  • Two-step authentication on cloud platforms
  • Internal data security policy