Data protection information

The Max-Planck-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Wissenschaften e.V. (MPG) takes the protection of your personal data very seriously. We process personal data gathered when visiting our websites in compliance with applicable data protection legislation. We neither publish your data nor transmit them to third parties on an unauthorized basis.

In the following section, we explain which data we record when you visit one of our websites, and exactly how they are utilized:

A.    General information

1.    Scope of data processing

As a matter of principle, we gather and utilize users' personal data only to the extent required to ensure the functioning of our website and of our contents and services. The gathering and utilization of our users' personal data normally occurs after users have granted their consent. An exception occurs where data processing is legally permitted.

2.    Legal basis of data processing

To the extent that permission of the affected individual is obtained for the processing of personal data, Article 6 (1) lit. a of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) serves as the legal basis.

In the processing of personal data to fulfil a contract whose contractual party is the individual affected, Article 6 (1) lit. b GDPR serves as the legal basis. This also applies to processing required to implement pre-contractual measures.

If processing is required to safeguard the justified interest of the MPG or a third party and the interests, basic rights and basic freedoms of the affected individual do not outweigh the first-mentioned interest, Article 6 (1) lit. f GDPR serves as the basis for such processing.

3.    Data deletion and storage duration

The affected individual's personal data are deleted or blocked as soon as the purpose of the storage ceases to apply. Storage can also occur if provided for by European or national legislators in EU regulations, acts or other legislation to which the MPG is subject. A blocking or deletion of data then occurs only if a storage period prescribed by one of the aforementioned norms expires, unless a necessity exists in relation to the further storage of the data for the arrangement of a contract or the fulfilment of a contract.

4.    Contact details of the individuals responsible

The entity responsible in the meaning of the General Data Protection Regulation and other national data protection acts as well as other data protection legislation is the

Max-Planck-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Wissenschaften e.V. (MPG)
Hofgartenstrasse 8
D-80539 Munich
Telephone: +49 (89) 2108-0
Contact form: https://www.mpg.de/contact/requests
Internet: https://www.mpg.de

5.    Data Protection Officer's contact details

The Data Protection Officer at the entity responsible is

Heidi Schuster
Hofgartenstrasse 8
D-80539 Munich
Telephone: +49 (89) 2108-1554
E-mail:

B.    Provision of the website and creation of log files

Each time you visit our website, our service and applications automatically record data and information from the computer system of the visiting computer.

The following data are gathered temporarily:

  • Your IP address
  • Date and time of your access to the website
  • Address of the page visited
  • Address of the previously visited website (referrer)
  • Name and version of your browser/operating system (if transmitted)

These data are stored in our systems' log files. These data are not stored together with the user's other personal data.

The legal basis for the temporary saving of data and log files is Article 6 (1) lit. f GDPR. Storage occurs in log files in order to ensure the website's functionality. The data also help us optimize the websites, eliminate malfunctions and ensure our IT system security. Our justified interest in data processing pursuant to Article 6 (1) lit. f GDPR also lies in such purposes.

The data are deleted as soon as they are no longer required to achieve the purpose for which they were gathered. If data are gathered for the provision of the website, this is the case if the respective visit is ended. In the instance that data are stored in log files, this is the case after seven days at the latest. Storage above and beyond this period is possible. In this case, the users' IP addresses are deleted or removed so they can no longer be allocated to the visiting client.

The recording of data for the provision of the website and the storage of data in log files is essential to operate the website. As a consequence, users do not have an option to revoke such data recording.

C.    Web analysis

We use the web analytics programme Matomo for statistical data collection in relation to utilization behaviour; this programme uses cookies and JavaScript to collect various information on your computer and transmit this automatically to us. Every time our website is accessed, our system logs the following data and information from the accessing computer system:

  • IP address, anonymized by means of abbreviation
  • Two cookies to distinguish between different visitors (pk_id and pk_sess)
  • Previously visited URL (referrer), if communicated by the browser
  • Name and version of the operating system
  • Name, version and language setting of the browser

The following data is also collected if JavaScript is activated:

  • URLs visited on this website
  • Times of page visits
  • Type of HTML requests
  • Screen resolution and colour depth
  • Technologies and formats supported by the browser (e.g. cookies, Java, Flash, PDF, WindowsMedia, QuickTime, Realplayer, Director, SilverLight, Google Gears)

The saving and analysis of data is carried out solely on a central server operated by the MPG. In addition to the central website www.mpg.de, it is also used by most Max Planck Institutes and many MPG project websites.

The legal basis for the processing of personal user data is Art. 6 para. 1 lit. f GDPR. By processing personal user data, we are able to analyse our users' utilization behaviour. Analysis of the data collected enables us to compile information on the use of the individual components of our web pages. This helps us improve our websites and their user-friendliness on an ongoing basis. These purposes also constitute our legitimate interest in data processing according to Art. 6 para. 1 lit. f GDPR. Anonymizing the IP address means that user behaviour can no longer be attributed to a specific person.

The data is deleted after the final annual totals have been arrived at for access statistics.

It goes without saying that you have the opportunity to object to your data being collected. The following independent methods are available to you if you wish to object to data collection by the central server:

  1. In your browser, activate the Do-Not-Track setting. If this setting is active, our central server does not save any of your data. Important: Do-Not-Track generally only applies to the one device and browser on which the setting is activated. If you use several devices/browsers, you must activate Do-Not-Track separately on each one.
  2. Use our opt-out function. Click on the check mark in the following selection box under https://mpic/en/privacy-policy/data-collection in order to stop or re-activate data collection. If the selection box is deactivated, our central server does not save any of your data. Important: For the opt-out, we have to store a special recognition cookie in your browser. If you delete this or use a different PC/browser, you have to object to data collection once again on this page.

There is no storage of this data together with other personal data relating to the user.

D.   Utilization of cookies

Our website utilizes cookies. Cookies are text files stored in the Internet browser or by the Internet browser on the user's computer system. If a user visits a website, a cookie can be stored on the user's operating system. This cookie contains a sequence of characters enabling the browser to be clearly identified when visiting the website again.

We deploy cookies to make our website more user-friendly. Some elements of our website also technically require the identification of the visiting browser after a change of page. The following data are saved and transmitted in the cookies:

  • Language settings (localization) of the browser: session cookie i18next
  • Session data (click path, pages visited, current language, and, where relevant, error messages for forms: session cookie MPG_session_r

Both cookies are deleted when the session is closed.

The legal basis for personal data processing while utilizing cookies is Article 6 (1) lit. f GDPR and sowie § 25 Abs. 2 Nr. 2 TTDSG. The purpose of utilizing technically necessary cookies is to simplify the utilization of websites for users. Some of our website's functions cannot be offered without the utilization of cookies. For these, it is absolutely necessary that the browser can also be re-identified following a change of page. We require cookies for the following applications:

  • Transferring the browser's language setting: automatic selection of the homepage and spelling
  • Noting of form data entered: terms and entries in the contact form utilized in searches within the website (section F)

User data gathered by technically necessary cookies are not utilized to prepare user profiles.

Cookies are stored on the user's computer, which transmits them to our site. For this reason, you, as the user, also have full control over the utilization of cookies. You can deactivate or restrict the transmission of cookies through changing your Internet browser settings. Cookies that have already been saved can be deleted at any time. This can also occur automatically. If cookies for our website are deactivated, you may find not all of the website's functions can continue to be utilized in full.

F.    Contact form

A contact form is available on our website for the purposes of making contact electronically. If a user opts for this, the data entered in the data entry form are transmitted to us, and we save the data. These are generally your email address, family name and first name. We inform you about the specific processing of the data and we obtain your consent as part of the utilization procedure. Reference is also made to this data protection statement. The data are utilized exclusively to process the conversation.

The Google reCaptcha function is utilized in order to avoid improper use of the form. reCaptcha serves to prevent mass machine use of the contact form by inserting image-based questions which only a human being can answer. reCaptcha is an embedded JavaScript, which establishes a connection to the provider's servers when the contact form is accessed. The provider thereby at least receives information that you have visited the contact form as well as, potentially, other information that your web browser and the device you are utilizing discloses. You can obtain information about the data processing at the provider through a reference on the contact form.

The legal basis for the processing of data when utilizing the contact form is the user's consent pursuant to Article 6 (1) lit. a GDPR. We employ the processing of personal data from the data entry form solely to process the initiation of the contact. The data are deleted as soon as they are no longer required for the purpose for which they were gathered. This occurs if the respective conversation with the user ends or if the user's issue has been processed conclusively. The conversation has ended if the circumstances suggest that the respective matter has been clarified conclusively. At any time, users can notify the listed contact partners that they are revoking their consent to the processing of personal data.

The legal basis for the processing of users' personal data by reCaptcha is Article 6 (1) lit. f GDPR. reCaptcha is utilized exclusively to ensure the functionality of the contact form and to prevent improper use. Our justified interest in data processing pursuant to Article 6 (1) lit. f GDPR lies in such purposes. Utilization is essential to operate the contact form. As a consequence, users do not have an option to revoke such data recording.

G.   Data transmission

The management and storage of your personal information occurs in the case of selected services

  • Contact form (section F)

As part of contract data processing on the systems of JustRelate Group GmbH, Berlin.

Your personal data will only be conveyed to state institutions and authorities in legally essential cases or for criminal prosecution based on attacks on our network infrastructure. The data are not transmitted to third parties for other purposes.

H.   Youtube Terms of Use

We integrate YouTube videos on some of our pages. The YouTube "Terms of Use" can be viewed at the following link:  https://www.youtube.com/static?template=terms

I.    Rights of individuals affected

As an individual whose personal data are gathered as part of the aforementioned services, you have, in principle, the following rights, to the extent that no legal exceptions are applicable in individual cases:

  • Information (Article 15 GDPR)
  • Correction (Article 16 GDPR)
  • Deletion (Article 17 (1) GDPR)
  • Restriction of processing (Article 18 GDPR)
  • Data transmission (Article 20 GDPR)
  • Revocation of processing (Article 21 GDPR)
  • Revocation of consent (Article 7 (3) GDPR)
  • Right to complain to the regulator (Article 77 GDPR). For the MPG, this is the Bavarian Data Protection Authority (BayLDA), Postfach 1349, 91504 Ansbach.
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