Privacy Policy

Privacy Policy

Throughout the history of Swansea University and its founding institutions, philanthropy has played a fundamental role in its growth and success. From the foresight of Viscount Haldane, who was instrumental in establishing the University a century ago, to the generosity of donors past and present, the support of those who believe in the power of education has helped Swansea University become the world leader it is today.

This statement explains how Swansea University ("we" and "our") handles and uses the personal data we collect about our alumni and our past, current and future supporters, whether donors, volunteers or participants in events we run ("you" and "your"). "The University" in this context means the Development & Engagement Office. Developing a better understanding of our alumni and supporters allows us to keep in touch with you, in order to keep you apprised of our activities and developments, to provide services to you, and to identify ways in which you can support us, through donations or other forms of financial and non-financial support.

We are committed to protecting your personal information and being transparent about what information we hold. The University has a range of data protection policies and procedures, an overview of which can be found here: The following statement sets out how the University specifically uses your personal data for fundraising and alumni relations purposes.

Personal data held by the University

We may hold information relating to you from a number of sources. The basic information we hold, if you studied at Swansea University (or predecessor institution), is transferred from your student record. This is augmented by any information that you provide to us (for example, you may give us information by filling in forms on the University's website, or by corresponding with us by telephone, email or otherwise).

Typical records contain some or all of the following:

  • Details of your Swansea University (or predecessor institution) education (e.g. the courses you have completed, dates of study, class of degree)
  • Unique personal identifiers and biographical information (e.g. student number, date of birth)
  • Your contact details, if known (which we update whenever you let us know that they have changed)
  • Details of your interactions with the University, including:
    • Your membership of clubs, societies, and alumni groups
    • Your attendance at University events
    • Other contact with us or our partners (as listed below)
    • Your relationships with other alumni or supporters of the University
  • Details about your family (e.g. your marital status, the name of your partner or spouse)
  • Personal data provided by you for a specific purpose (e.g. disability and dietary preferences for event management purposes)
  • Your communication preferences, to help us provide tailored and relevant communications

We also record, where applicable, based on information which you provide to us and, in some cases, publicly available information and information from our partners (as listed below):

  • Financial information relating to you and your family, including:
    • Your history of donations made to the university and colleges
    • Your ability and willingness to make donations, including our assessment of your income and whether particular donations or funding appeals may be of interest to you
    • Your philanthropy and other giving, including donations to other organisations and other support that you provide (e.g. details of volunteering roles)
  • Your career highlights and other life achievements
  • Information about your areas of interest and extra-curricular activities

How we keep your data accurate and up-to-date

In order to maintain data integrity, we augment the data we hold from the University with data from our partners (as listed below) and publicly available data, including from the following databases (which are accessed via a third party partner such as CCR (see below), not directly by Swansea University):

  • Royal Mail’s National Change of Address service
  • BT Operator Services Information System (OSIS)
  • Various databases and suppression files maintained by, among others, Experian (e.g. Absolute Movers), Equifax (e.g. disConnect), Acxiom (e.g. Purity), Wilmington Millennium (e.g. Mortascreen)

We use targeted internet searches and may search the following websites (either directly or using search engines), where relevant in order to obtain and maintain the accuracy of the data listed above:

  • Public sources for companies (in order to find personal data of those companies' employees, etc.):
    • Companies House and other business-related resources for UK companies
    • Company websites
  • Public sources for charities (in order to find personal data of those charities' employees, trustees, etc., and to find information about donations and support):
    • Charity Commission and other internet sources for UK non-profits
    • Charity websites
  • Public sources for individuals:
    • Sunday Times Rich List
    • Other rich lists, including Forbes Magazine's international rich lists
    • The Queen's Honours Lists
    • Linkedln, to check business details
  • Press Sources
    • Newspaper articles and publications
    • LexisNexis (subscription)

How your data is used by the University

Your data is used by us for a number of interdependent purposes in support of alumni relations, supporter communications and fundraising. These include:

  • Sending you publications (e.g. alumni magazines and updates about the university)
  • Conducting surveys
  • Providing services, including access to find a friend and other services
  • Sending you tailored proposals, appeals and requests for donations
  • Sending you details of volunteering opportunities
  • Inviting you to alumni and other university events
  • Wealth analysis (sometimes known as ‘wealth screening’) and research (‘prospect research’) in order to improve our understanding of our alumni and supporters, inform our fundraising strategy and target our communications more effectively
  • Internal record keeping, including the management of any feedback or complaints
  • Administrative purposes (e.g. in order to process a donation you have made or to administer an event you have registered for or attended)


Before seeking or accepting major donations we are required to conduct due diligence, including reviewing publicly available personal data relating to the donor's criminal convictions and offences.

Communications to you may be sent by post, telephone or electronic means (principally by email), depending on the contact details we hold and the preferences expressed by you about the types of communications you wish to receive. If you provide us with contact details for a particular method of communication we will assume that you have given us your consent for us to update your record and communicate with you using this information, unless you have told us otherwise.  Contact details provided directly by you will update any previous preferences in relation to this channel unless you inform us otherwise.  If you are registered with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS) but provide us with a telephone number we will assume that we have your consent to call you on this number.

If you have concerns or queries about any of these purposes, or how we communicate with you, please contact us using the details listed below.

We may analyse data to help us identify your potential for supporting the University, to provide you with an improved experience, to send you communications which are relevant and timely, to identify volunteering opportunities or opportunities for providing support which may be of interest to you, and to avoid approaching you with opportunities which are not of interest. All of this enables us to raise more funds, sooner, and more cost-effectively, in support of the University's strategic research and teaching objectives. We always seek to ensure, where possible, that any opportunities we present are aligned with your interests, based on the research we conduct.

We will always respect a request by you to stop processing your personal data. Your statutory rights are set out below.

When the University shares your data with others (our partners)

We share data on a considered and confidential basis, where appropriate, with:

  • Affiliated organisations which support and provide services to alumni and supporters, such as:
    • Volunteer partners closely related to us (e.g. Development Board members, Alumni Chapter heads)
  • Third parties engaged by the university to provide fundraising related services, such as:
    • Third party agencies who provide us with data about individuals' capacity to donate (this is sometimes called ‘wealth screening’)
    • Contractors who use national databases (e.g. National Change of Address service) to provide us with updated details for our alumni, for example if you move house. This is often called ‘data cleansing’, and is carried out by a third party such as CCR ( We never process ‘sensitive’ or ‘special category’ data
    • Other contractors providing services to us, or services to you on our behalf, (for example, our telethon provider, Rux Burton Associates (; mailing houses for distribution of our alumni magazine)

How we protect your data

We ensure we have appropriate data sharing agreements in place before sharing your personal data, including for any subcontractors.

We do not sell your personal data to third parties under any circumstances, or permit third parties to sell on the data we have shared with them.

We also facilitate communication between individual alumni, but in doing so we do not release personal contact details without prior permission.

Any transfers of your data overseas (outside of the European Economic Area), for example to servers located in the US, as set out below, are protected either by an 'adequacy decision' by the European Commission (declaring the recipient country as a 'safe' territory for personal data) or by standard contractual clauses adopted by the European Commission (which give obligations for the recipient to safeguard the data) or, before 25 May 2018, based on the University's self-assessment of the risks involved with the transfer and its determination that the data will be adequately protected during and after the transfer. Further information about the measures we use to protect data when being transferred internationally is available from our Data Protection Officer (whose contact details are set out below).

In the case of our Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system, ‘The Raiser’s Edge’, alumni data is hosted on Blackbaud’s United States servers. Blackbaud is Privacy Shield certified, which means they conform to the EU’s strict standards of data protection.

Your rights

Your rights in respect of the personal data we hold about you are very important to us. If you have any queries, wish to restrict data processing including use for marketing or do not want to be contacted by the University, please contact us or update your preferences.

Specifically, you have the right to:

  • ask us for access to, or rectification or erasure of your data
  • restrict processing (pending correction or deletion)
  • object to communications or direct marketing
  • ask for the transfer of your data electronically to a third party (data portability)

You have the right to lodge a complaint with the Information Commissioner's Office at

Further information

The legal basis for processing your personal data for the interdependent purposes set out above is that it is necessary for the pursuit of our legitimate interests, or the carrying out of a task in the public interest or in the exercise of our official authority. We always handle your personal data securely and minimise its use, and your interests are not overridden by using your personal information for these purposes. In addition, there is no statutory or contractual requirement for you to provide us with any personal data.

The controller for your personal data is Swansea University, and, for the purposes of development and alumni relations, we can be contacted at

Our Data Protection Officer is responsible for monitoring compliance with relevant legislation in relation to the protection of personal data, and can be contacted at

Please contact us at if you have any concerns or questions about the above information or you wish to ask us not to process your personal data for particular purposes. Where you have specific requests relating to how we manage your data, we will endeavour to resolve these, but please note that there may be circumstances where we cannot comply with specific requests. In the event you remain dissatisfied with the response from the University, you are entitled to take your complaint to the Fundraising Regulator for an independent investigation. Please see their website for further details:

We will retain your data indefinitely in support of your lifelong relationship with the University or until you request us to do otherwise. We will publish on our website any changes we make to this data protection statement and notify you by other communication channels where appropriate.

Where you exercise your right to erasure, we will continue to maintain a core set of personal data (name, subject(s), matriculation and graduation details, unique University identification number and date of birth) to ensure we do not contact you inadvertently in future. We may also need to retain some financial records about you for statutory purposes (e.g. Gift Aid, anti-fraud and accounting matters).


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