Within the framework of Germany’s Presidency of the Council of the EU, the Federal Foreign Office shall process personal data in line with the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the Federal Data Protection Act and, where applicable, particular statutory rules. In order to inform you of our data processing policy and of your rights as well as to comply with our obligations pursuant to Articles 13 and 14 of the GDPR, the following declaration outlines how we process the personal data we receive when you use our website or contact us (via the contact form, email, by telephone or post).

1. Basics

1.1. Controller and Data Protection Commissioner

Pursuant to section 2 of the Foreign Service Act, the Federal Foreign Office (Head Office) and the German missions abroad form one single federal authority.

Pursuant to Article 4 (7) of the GDPR, responsibility for processing personal data lies with:

Federal Foreign Office
Werderscher Markt 1
10117 Berlin
Telephone: +49 (0)30 18 17-0 / Help Desk: +49 (0)30 18 17-2000
Fax: +49 (0)30 18 17-3402

Contact the help desk

The Federal Foreign Office Data Protection Commissioner can be contacted as follows:
Federal Foreign Office Data Protection Commissioner
Federal Foreign Office
Werderscher Markt 1
10117 Berlin
Telephone.: +49 (0)30 18 17-7099
Fax: +49 (0)30 18 17-5 7099

Contact the Data Protection Commissioner

1.2. Personal data

Personal data means any information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person. An identifiable natural person is one who can be identified, directly or indirectly, in particular by reference to an identifier such as a name, an identification number, location data or an online identifier (Article 4 (1) of the GDPR).

Presidency Portal for Informal Events (PPI)
The names and email addresses of event participants will be forwarded to the Presidency Portal for Informal Events (PPI), which is run by the General Secretariat of the EU Council. Event participants can log in to this portal as soon as they are accredited for a given event. Participant data will be stored until the end of the German Presidency of the Council of the European Union on 31 December 2020 and subsequently pseudonymised in line with the GDPR.

1.3. Legal basis for processing

We shall process your personal data on the basis of

  • Article 6 (1) (a) of the GDPR, provided you have given your consent,
  • Article 6 (1) (b) of the GDPR, if processing is necessary for the fulfilment of a contract or for a measure prior to entering into a contract,
  • Article 6 (1) (c) of the GDPR, if processing is necessary to comply with a legal obligation to which we are subject,
  • Article 6 (1) (d) of the GDPR, if processing is necessary to protect the vital interests of the person in question or of another natural person,
  • Article 6 (1) (e) of the GDPR in conjunction with section 3 of the Federal Data Protection Act, if processing is necessary for the performance of a task assigned to us in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority (e.g. responding to contact requests).

2. Data processed when you visit this website

2.1. Data collection

Each time a user accesses this website or retrieves a file, data on this activity is temporarily stored and processed in a log file.

The tracking tool employed to analyse site use is configured to ensure that no personal data is collected.

User IP addresses are also anonymised, so that individual activity cannot be traced.

The tracking tool runs on our own servers in a secure network zone certified by the Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) to ensure that no tracking data can be accessed by third parties.

If you do not want your activity on the website to be registered or analysed, you can activate the Do Not Track setting on your browser. A browser variable is transmitted which tells the website whether the user wishes their activity to be tracked or not.

To find out how to do this with your browser, enter in a search engine, for example: “activate Do Not Track [browser name]”

The following data is collected by the JavaScript tracking tool:

  • Request (file name), date and time of the request
  • Browser type and version (e.g. Internet Explorer 11)
  • Browser language (e.g. German)
  • Operating system used (e.g. Windows 10)
  • Device type, model and make
  • Screen resolution
  • Plug-ins used (e.g. Flash, Java)
  • Referrer URL (previous page accessed by the user)
  • Anonymised IP address
  • Country and region from which the request originated
  • Downloads
  • Clicks
  • Number of forms sent (depending on the goals defined)

2.2. Session cookies

Accessing individual pages generates so-called transient cookies to facilitate navigation. These session cookies contain no personal data and are erased at the end of the session. Technology which allows user access behaviour to be monitored is not used.

2.3. Use of social media plug-ins

We currently use the following social media plug-ins: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Flickr and YouTube (Google). We use the two-click solution, which means that no personal data is initially passed on to the providers of the plug-ins when you visit our site. Only if you click on the activation button on social media will personal data be transferred from you to the respective plug-in provider and stored there (for US providers in the USA). We use social media plug-ins to make the information we provide more interesting through interaction with you and other users.

We expressly point out that social networks store their users’ data (e.g. personal information, IP address, etc.) in accordance with their own data usage guidelines and use this data for commercial purposes. You can find out more about how social networks process data by clicking on the following links:

The Federal Foreign Office has no influence over whether or what data is collected by social networks and how this data is used. We are unable to identify how much, where and for how long data is stored, to what extent the networks adhere to requirements to delete data, how the data is evaluated and linked, and with whom the data is shared.

We therefore ask you to check carefully which personal data you make available to the social networks when you use our site. If you do not want social networks to receive your personal data via your communication on our website, you should contact us in another way, for example by using the contact form on this website.

3. Personal data processed when you contact us

When you contact us, your details (name, email address and possibly also your address, telephone and fax numbers) and the information provided (including personal data) are processed for the purpose of contacting you and handling your inquiry. The storage of this data is governed by the statutory periods for retaining records laid down in the Registry Directive, which complements the Joint Rules of Procedure of the Federal Ministries.

If we are not responsible for your inquiry, it may be forwarded to other state and federal authorities without your prior consent but in compliance with data protection regulations, provided it can be assumed that forwarding your inquiry for the purpose of answering it is in your interest and no sensitive personal data is affected (Article 6 (1) (e) of the GDPR in conjunction with section 3, section 25 (1) and section 23 (1) (1) of the Federal Data Protection Act).

4. Your rights

4.1. In your dealings with us, you have the following rights regarding your personal data:

  • Right of access, Article 15 of the GDPR
  • Right to rectification, Article 16 of the GDPR
  • Right to erasure (right to be forgotten), Article 17 of the GDPR
  • Right to restriction of processing, Article 18 of the GDPR
  • Right to data portability, Article 20 of the GDPR
  • Right to object to processing, Article 21 of the GDPR

4.2. Disclaimer

If the processing of your personal data is based on your consent, you have the right to revoke this at any time without giving reasons. Such withdrawal of consent does not affect the lawfulness of any use based on your consent prior to its withdrawal (Article 7 (3) of the GDPR).

4.3. Complaints

You also have the right to complain to a data protection supervisory authority about our processing of your personal data (Article 77 of the GDPR).
The supervisory authority responsible for the Federal Foreign Office and the German missions abroad is the:
Federal Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information
Graurheindorfer Straße 131
53117 Bonn