Specific details about each potential category of data collection and its related privacy issues are described below.
The Minnesota Land Trust collects and retains information from its donors for many purposes including acknowledging and thanking donors, tracking contributions, informing donors about the Land Trust’s work, inviting donors to our events and providing future opportunities to contribute to us. Unless anonymity has been requested, donors may be recognized in the Land Trust’s annual report or other media that we produce in appreciation for their contributions.
Landowners and Land Transactions
When working with landowners on a conservation easement or fee simple land transaction, the Minnesota Land Trust maintains certain records of the transaction in both paper and electronic form. Only key staff and other agents of the Land Trust have access to these files. However, upon request, the transaction files may be reviewed by external auditors or other entities such as the Land Trust Accreditation Commission who are conducting reviews of the Land Trust. Certain non-personal information such as monitoring records, the conservation easement and baseline documentation report is accessed periodically by staff and volunteers for monitoring purposes.
When public funding is utilized in the transaction, the public agencies providing such funding may require disclosure to them of certain information such as the landowner’s name, the nature and location of the land protected, property boundaries and amount of public funds utilized in the project. As publicly recorded documents, conservation easement documents are also available to the public via the County Recorders’ office.
In order to advance its mission and celebrate conservation success with a wider audience, the Land Trust often distributes press releases or develops articles regarding conservation projects for newsletters or on-line media. The Land Trust will routinely discuss such communications with the landowner prior to distribution.
It is our policy that other private information regarding the landowner or the transaction such as tax statements, private correspondence or financial data is not sold, rented or otherwise shared with third parties except as required in audits or legal defense of the easement. Our practice in furtherance of this policy is to maintain the permanent easement transaction records in hard copy in the Land Trust’s offices or electronically via our secured server.
Visitors to the Website, Social Media or Email
The Minnesota Land Trust website collects information about each visitor to our website or other on-line media in these ways:
Registrations and Purchases
For event registrations, the Minnesota Land Trust may use either its own website or a third-party vendor. In either case, the Land Trust’s policy is to protect all information from unauthorized distribution or use. All data is treated as donor information and we do not sell, share, provide, rent or trade this information with third parties. It is the Land Trust’s practice to produce attendee lists for our conferences and workshops. Individuals may opt-out of having their name or contact information included in an attendee list by notifying the Land Trust as indicated below.
Individuals may opt-out of mailings (both postal and email) at anytime if they do not wish to receive non-business critical information from the Land Trust.
To opt-out of mailings or registration lists as described above, individuals may simply call the Land Trust at 651-647-9590 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org and request that they be excluded.
Links to Third Party Sites
The Land Trust provides links to third party web sites in its solicitation of donations, event registrations, email correspondence, social media or web page. These web sites and their vendors are not controlled by the Land Trust. For that reason, we encourage individuals to review the privacy policies posted on those third party sites.
Limits to Internet Security
Unfortunately, no data transmission over the Internet can be 100% secure. While we strive to protect all electronic data and information we collect to the fullest extent possible, we cannot ensure or completely guarantee the security of such information.
The Land Trust stores all electronic records on a password-protected server located in the Land Trust office that is further protected from intrusion and malware through the use of a firewall appliance. Employees and board members must log in to access files and must change passwords periodically. A security audit is performed periodically by an outside vendor to ensure that best security practices are in place.
This policy is in accordance with the Land Trust Standards and Practices. This policy will replace any previous policies on this topic.
This policy was approved by the Minnesota Land Trust Board of Directors on September 26, 2013.