This privacy policy (the Privacy Policy) applies to the processing of personal data by the SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics (CHE-101.064.173), a Swiss Foundation, with registered seat at rue Michel-Servet 1, c/o Centre Médical Universitaire, 1206 Geneva, Switzerland (SIB, we or our), in connection with the websites operated by SIB and insofar as they refer to this Privacy Policy (collectively, the Websites). 

By accessing and using the Websites, you have read and agreed that SIB collects and processes your personal data in accordance with this Privacy Policy.

1. Introduction

SIB recognizes the importance of your privacy and applies transparency in its processing of your personal data. 

SIB values the privacy of the users of the Websites and the confidentiality of their personal data. That is why SIB is committed to processing your personal data with care, integrity, and transparency. 

We process your personal data in compliance with applicable law, in particular Swiss data protection law and, to the extent they apply to SIB, the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

The Privacy Policy explains (i) which personal data are collected when you access and use the Websites, (ii) the manner and the purposes for which SIB processes the personal data, and (iii) the measures which SIB takes in order to protect such personal data.

2. Data collection

SIB collects the personal data which you provide.

2.1 SIB collects, directly or indirectly via its partners, the personal data you provide with SIB and/or its partners through web forms or email, or in your use of the Websites, for example, when you subscribe to SIB’s newsletter, log in to the Websites, or apply for a job within SIB.

2.2 Such information may include any of the following: your name, company/organization name, login, password, date of birth, gender, nationality, email, telephone number, fax number, job application documents, social profile web page, payment/billing information, IP address or any other information which SIB and/or its partners may request from you.

Certain personal data are also collected in an automated manner.

2.3 We use different types of cookies and similar technologies in connection with the Websites. They might be capable of automatic processing data on your electronic device and or transferring your personal data to SIB. We use these technologies to monitor and analyze your interactions with the Websites, enable us to improve the Websites and their functionalities, to measure, monitor the traffic and helps us to understand how you use the Websites. For more detailed information, please see the Cookies and similar technology section below (Section 6).

3. Purposes of Data Processing

SIB does not use any personal data for other purposes than those outlined below, unless you have given your consent to additional data processing when using certain services, or if we are legally bound to do so. For the sake of clarity, SIB will not sell, trade or rent any personal data to third parties.

SIB processes your personal data to operate the Websites.

3.1 Your personal data are collected so that SIB may operate the Websites in accordance with the circumstances, or in the manner expressly indicated when the personal data concerned are collected. For example, SIB allows you to navigate, use or re-engage with the Websites.

SIB may process your personal data to provide you with its newsletter, news or updates.

3.2 For example, by subscribing to a specific SIB newsletter, you will receive the corresponding mailing.

SIB may process your personal data to provide you with online support services and allow you to attend SIB training courses and other events.

3.3 SIB may provide you with support services for various technical and scientific activities (e.g. via the Expasy helpdesk, support pages of various resources and SIB groups). SIB may also process your personal data that you provide when you fill in the SIB form available on the Websites to apply for the SIB training courses or other events (e.g., conferences).

SIB may process your personal data to provide you with job opportunities within SIB.

3.4 SIB may process your personal data to allow you to consult and apply for job opportunities within SIB. For more information, please see our specific Data Protection Notice and Consent Declaration related to our recruitment platform Refline.

SIB processes your personal data for statistical and planning purposes.

3.5 SIB processes your personal data to improve the Websites and to do internal analyses and statistics. 

4. Personal data sharing and disclosure

SIB may disclose your personal data to third parties in case this is necessary for the proper operation of the Websites or as listed below.

4.1 SIB may disclose your personal data to its partners for internal management of the Websites, for example technical and administration purposes in line with this Privacy Policy.

4.2 SIB may also enable you to use third-party services directly from the Websites, namely through social plug-ins Google LLC; Facebook Inc.; LinkedIn Corporation; Twitter and Microsoft Corporation, in which case you recognize that the third-party operators of these services may access some of your personal data in connection with the Websites.

4.3 SIB may disclose your personal data to any third party to whom SIB assigns or transfers any of SIB’s rights or obligations.

4.4 SIB may disclose your personal data to competent courts or supervisory or regulatory bodies, when SIB shall compellingly disclose your personal data, pursuant to any applicable law, regulation or order.

4.5 In the above contexts under Sections 4.1 and 4.2, the Websites may contain links to other third party’s website. Please note that this Privacy Policy does not apply to the practices of any company, organization or individual that SIB does not control, nor to any other third party’s website that may be linked to and accessible from the Websites. You should carefully review the privacy policies of third party’s website to learn more about the processing of personal data. In such contexts, the collection and use of your personal data shall be governed by such third party’s website. SIB shall not be held responsible for their privacy practices.

5. International transfer

Your personal data may be disclosed to countries that do not guarantee the same level of data protection and privacy as Switzerland and the European Economic Area.

SIB stores and handles your personal data in Switzerland and/or within the European Economic Area (EEA). However, your personal data may be disclosed and transferred to other states, provinces, countries or other governmental jurisdictions, always in compliance with this Privacy Policy and applicable laws, that do not necessarily guarantee the same level of personal data protection as Switzerland and the European Economic Area or an adequate level. Where SIB may transfer your personal data to third parties from within the EEA to a country outside the EEA, SIB ensures that such transfer is compliant with applicable data protection law. 

6. Cookies and similar technologies

We use different types of cookies and similar technologies in connection with the Websites to make more user-friendly, effective and secure your access to and use of our Websites. 


6.1 SIB may use its own cookies (first-party cookies) as well as cookies from third-part service providers (third-party cookies).  A cookie is a small file which is sent to your computer or stored automatically on your electronic device by your web browser when you visit our Websites. Cookies contain a sequence of characters enabling the browser to be clearly identified when visiting the websites again. Cookies do not harm your computer and do not contain viruses. They can be stored temporarily in your browser (session cookies) or for a specific period of time (permanent cookies).

6.2 Most of the cookies we used are session cookies. They are essential for the basic function of our Websites. These cookies are only used during a session, and they are deleted after your website visit. We also used analytical cookies to allow us to find out more about the use of our Websites based on anonymized data and to continually improve them. If you visit our Websites again, we will thus be able to reidentify your browser. For certain Websites, you are given the choice to accept or reject the optional cookies by clicking on the cookie banner on the homepage. You can change this choice at any time via the cookie settings in our website's footer.

6.3 If you do not want cookies to be stored on your device, you can configure your web browser or your device to refuse and/or restrict the cookies. Certain cookies are however essential to the functioning of the Websites themselves, and their use may be altered or prevented by refusing these cookies. 

6.4 For more information, please visit the website or where you can find more information about behavioral advertising and online privacy.


6.5 SIB Websites use the open-source software tool Matomo to compile access statistics and to analyse general usage behaviour on our Websites. This information is used to gather aggregated and anonymous statistics with a view to improving our services and to enhance user’s experience.

6.6 By default, Matomo runs exclusively on SIB’s server and is configured in such a way that no personal data is collected. For example, when you visit our website, we may collect some data on your browsing experience such as your masked IP address (anonymized by removing the last two bytes), the web page you visited, when you visited and the website page you were redirected from. 

6.7 The analytical reports generated by Matomo can only be accessed by authorized SIB employees, or by duly authorized external consultants, who may be required to analyze, develop and/or regularly maintain certain sites.

Server logs files 

6.8 SIB may collect the following information for each access to our Websites, provided that this information is transmitted by your browser to our server infrastructure or if our web servers are able to collect it: date and time, including time zone, IP address, access status (HTTP status code), operating system including user interface and version, browser including language and version, individual pages of our website visited including the volume of data transferred, referrer URL.

6.9 We store this information – which can also represent personal data – in server log files. We use this information for safeguarding the network infrastructure, facilitating technical administration, optimizing the use of our Websites, and identifying and tracking unauthorized access attempts. The data are deleted as soon as they are no longer required to achieve the above-mentioned purposes for which they were gathered. 

Plug-ins and social media

6.10 SIB may also use plug-ins on our Websites for social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Youtube which are clearly indicated (usually with a corresponding icon). We have configured these elements to be disabled by default. If you activate them (by clicking on them), the operator of the corresponding social network registers that you are on our Websites and where you are, and can use this information for its own purposes. The processing of your personal data by the operator is therefore the responsibility of the operator in accordance with its own data protection provisions. We do not receive any information about you from the operator.

7. Your rights 

You have the right to access your personal data processed by SIB and may request that they be removed, updated, limited or rectified.

7.1 Except as otherwise required by law, you are entitled at all times to know if SIB is processing personal data concerning you. You may contact SIB to know the content of such personal data, verify their accuracy and request that they be supplemented, removed, updated, limited or rectified. You also have the right to ask SIB to cease processing any personal data that may have been obtained in breach of applicable law, and to object to the processing of your personal data for any other legitimate reason. Please note that any information that we have copied may remain in back-up storage for some period of time after your deletion request.

7.2 Where SIB relies on your consent to process your personal data, SIB will seek your freely given and specific consent by providing you with informed and unambiguous indications relating to your personal data. You may revoke at any time such consent (without such withdrawal affecting the lawfulness of processing made prior to).

7.3 The above does not restrict any other rights you might have pursuant to applicable data protection legislation under certain circumstances. In particular, if the GDPR applies to the processing of your personal data the GDPR grants you certain rights as a data subject if the respective requirements are met:

  • Right of access
  • Right to rectification 
  • Right to erasure
  • Right to restriction of processing
  • Right to data portability
  • Right to object to processing 

7.4 You can obtain further details on this Section 7 and other questions on data protection by contacting us at the address set out in the Section 9 of this Privacy Policy. Furthermore, you may lodge a complaint with the competent data protection supervisory authority in the event of non-compliance with data protection legislation. 

8. Data retention and archiving

Personal data processed by SIB will be retained only for as long as is necessary to fulfil the purposes outlined above in this Privacy Policy. This will generally (but not in all cases) be for the duration of time where you use our services, to comply with our legal obligations or to protect SIB’s rights. When determining the relevant retention periods for your personal data, we will take into account factors including:

  • our contractual obligations and rights in relation to the personal data involved;

  • legal obligation(s) under applicable law to retain data for a certain period of time;

  • statute of limitations under applicable law(s) which is the period during which contractual claims could be brought;

  • (potential) disputes; and

  • guidelines issued by relevant data protection authorities.

9. Contact

9.1 If you have any questions or a request in relation to the processing of your personal data by SIB, please contact the Data Protection Officer (DPO).

9.2 To comply with the General Data protection Regulation (2016/679) we have also appointed a European representative. If you wish to contact them, their details are as follows: 
Bird & Bird GDPR Representative Services SRL 
Avenue Louise 235
1050 Bruxelles

10. Changes to the Privacy Policy

SIB reserves the right to amend the Privacy Policy at any time at its sole discretion without prior notice in order to adapt it to any new commercial or technological practice or change in the law. Accordingly, we recommend that you re-read this Privacy Policy on a regular basis. If you no longer accept this Privacy Policy or any future amendments made by SIB, your sole remedy is to no longer access and/or use the Websites. 

This Privacy Policy was last updated on: 5 September 2023