Privacy Policy

November 16, 2015

Your Privacy Rights

Scope of the Privacy Policy

The National Geographic Society, which also is known as (collectively, “National Geographic Society,” “we” or “our”) understand the importance of our your privacy. This Privacy Policy tells you what information we collect about you when you visit this website or use an online application that contains a link to this Privacy Policy (the “Services”). Our Privacy Policy also tells you how we use, share and protect this information; what choices you have about how this information is used; and how you can access and update this information. Certain aspects of this Privacy Policy also apply to the personally identifiable information we collect offline.

For purposes of this Privacy Policy, “personally identifiable information” means information that identifies and can be used to contact a particular individual, such as name, postal address, email address, and phone number. When other information, such as email newsletter choices, magazine or product purchases, or consumer product preferences, is associated with personally identifiable information, this other information also becomes personally identifiable information. 


Information Collected

Information You Provide Directly to National Geographic Society

If you are interested in obtaining information, products or services from National Geographic Society, or in participating in certain activities on the Services, you may need to provide us with information about yourself. For example: 

  • If you order a product from us, we ask for your name, postal address, email address, telephone number and your credit card number. 
  • If you are ordering a product as a gift for another person, we will ask you for that person’s name, postal address and phone number in order to enable us to deliver the gift to the recipient. 
  • If you participate in an activity such as a survey or sweepstakes, we may also ask you to provide other types of information such as gender and personal interests, which we may associate with personally identifiable information that we have obtained about you. 

In addition, we may combine personally identifiable information that you have provided to us with other information that is publicly available or that we receive from other sources. 


Information We Collect Automatically 

In addition to information you choose to provide to us, we also use standard Internet technologies to collect automatically certain additional information. For example: 

  • IP Address or Device Identifier. When you come to our Services, we collect your Internet Protocol (“IP”) address, which identifies the computer or service provider that you use to access the Services or your mobile device identifier, if you connect through a mobile device. We may use these identifiers to collect information regarding the frequency with which specific visitors visit various parts of our Services. We may combine this information with personally identifiable information that we have collected to make our Services and our communications to you more targeted to your interests. 
  • Cookies. Our site also uses cookies. Cookies are small text files that are stored on a user’s computer and allow websites to remember information about users. We use cookies for a variety of purposes in order to enhance the quality of our Site. We use transient (also called “session ID”) cookies to provide continuity from page to page. A session ID cookie expires when you close your browser. We also use persistent cookies. Persistent cookies allow our online store and certain other parts of our Site to recognize your browser when you return after your first visit to that part of our Site. Cookies allow us to personalize your return visits to our Site and to save you time during certain activities, such as checking out from our online store. You have the choice to set your browser to accept all cookies, reject all cookies, or notify you when a cookie is set. (Each browser is different, so check the "Help" menu of your browser to learn how to change your cookie preferences.) It is up to you whether to allow us to send you cookies. However, if you do not accept cookies from us, your ability to use some areas of our Site will be limited, such as our shopping cart feature or online games.
  • Web beacons and other technologies. The Services uses other tracking tools, including web beacons. Web beacons are images on the Services (or in emails that the Services sends to you) that help us determine what parts of the Services you have visited, whether you have opened an email that we have sent to you, or otherwise to measure the effectiveness of the Services. These technical methods may involve the transmission of information directly to us or to a service provider authorized by us to collect information on our behalf. For more information about how we use a third party service to collect and use information on this Site.

The information we collect automatically may be combined with information that is personally identifiable so that we can make our Site and communications more interesting to you.


Information Use

National Geographic Society may use information that we collect about you for a variety of business purposes, including: 

  • to maintain and manage your account, deliver Services that you have requested, and enhance your experience on our Services;
  • to process and track your product or service orders and provide the services you request;
  • to communicate with you about the Services or other products or services in which you may be interested, or to respond to your inquiries or comments;
  • to perform business analyses or for other purposes to improve the quality of our business, the Services, and the products and services we offer; or
  • in accordance with your consent.


Information Sharing and Disclosure

We take very seriously our responsibility to maintain your privacy with respect to your information. We will therefore share that information only with the following entities, and only under these circumstances: 

  • with entities that provide services on our behalf, including Service development, maintenance and support, payment processing, email distribution, and promotions management, only to the extent that these entities need the information to perform their services or as required by law, unless any additional use or sharing of the information is separately permitted under another provision of this Privacy Policy;
  • within the National Geographic Society family, which is defined for this purpose as corporate affiliates of National Geographic Society (“Affiliates”) and entities that are authorized to use the “National Geographic” name and registered trademarks to brand their products or services (such as National Geographic Partners, LLC and its sub-licensees);
  • with identified entities whose products or services you specifically use or request to receive while you use the Services;
  • with other selected third parties so that they may send you promotional materials about goods and services that they offer, but you have the opportunity to opt out of our sharing personally identifiable information about you as described below in the section entitled “Your Choices,” and we will not share your email address with third parties for promotional purposes unless you specifically agree to such sharing;
  • when we believe that doing so is required by law, may be necessary to protect any person’s property, rights, or safety, or to investigate a potential violation of law, will help to enforce any terms of use or other legal agreement, or will help resolve disputes that arise in the ordinary course of business, or in the event of a corporate transaction, such as a divestiture, merger, consolidation, or asset sale;
  • in aggregated or other non-personally identifiable form; or
  • in accordance with your consent.


Your Choices 

We understand the importance of protecting our your’ privacy, and we therefore provide you with the opportunity to opt-out of having your personally identifiable information used or disclosed for certain purposes. (Note: National Geographic Society sites currently do not recognize the "do-not-track signals" that some browsers may employ.)

You can opt out of receiving promotional communications from National Geographic Society and our Affiliates and our licensees, or request that we not share personally identifiable information about you with third parties for the third parties’ marketing purposes, by contacting us at: 

National Geographic Society
Attn: Marketing Services - Privacy
1145 17th Street NW
Washington, DC 20036-4688

Telephone: 800-NGS-LINE (800-647-5463)
TDD: 800-548-9797
Outside the United States and Canada: 813-979-6845

If you continue to receive our communications in error after expressing an opt-out preference, please let us know so that we can investigate the situation.


Third Party Sites

If you click on or interact with a hyperlink that you find on the Services, including but not limited to, you may leave our Services or send information to a different website or application. Our Privacy Policy does not apply to your interactions with other websites, even if you find a link to them on our Services, and so you should read the privacy policy of the third-party website provider to see how your personally identifiable information will be treated on its site. 


Information Security

The security and confidentiality of your information is extremely important to us, and we take a number of steps to safeguard any personally identifiable information or credit card information that you provide to us. We use data encryption technology to help protect against loss, misuse or alteration of your credit card information. Secure Socket Layers (SSLs) encrypt the credit card information sent between your computer and our database. However, no method of transmitting or storing electronic data is ever completely secure, and therefore we cannot warrant or guarantee that such information will never be accessed, used or released in a manner that is inconsistent with this policy. 


Personally Identifiable Information Contained in User Content

Some parts of our Services may allow users to post or transmit messages, comments, screen names, computer files and other materials. If you choose to make personally identifiable information public through these Services, National Geographic Society will consider that information public and will not limit its disclosure in the manner described here. 


Visiting Our Services From Outside The United States

National Geographic Society is based in Washington, DC in the United States of America. If you are visiting our web site from outside the United States, please be aware that your information may be transferred to, processed, and stored in the United States and other countries around the world. The data protection and other laws of the United States and other countries might not be as comprehensive as those in your country. Please be assured that we seek to take reasonable steps to ensure that your privacy is protected. By using our services or providing us with any information through this website, you consent to the transfer, processing and storage of your information in the United States and other countries around the world. 


Children’s Privacy

Other than certain sites that are on or for example, managed by National Geographic Partners, LLC– including and – these Services are not intended for visits from children under the age of 13.  Our Services are a general audience services, and we do not knowingly collect information about children under 13 years old through them. Should a child whom we know to be under 13 make known to us his or her personally identifiable information, we will use that information only to respond directly to that child to inform him or her that we must have parental consent before receiving his or her personally identifiable information. If we learn that we have collected personally identifiable information from a child under 13 other than in a manner authorized by law, we will delete that information from our database. 


Changes in this Privacy Policy

We may amend this Privacy Policy at any time by posting the most recent version of the Policy on the Services, along with an indication of the date on which the Policy was amended most recently. If we make any material changes in the way we collect, use, and/or share personally identifiable information that we collect about you through the Services, we will notify you by sending you an email at the last email address that you provided us and/or by prominently posting notice of the changes on the Services. In any event, changes to this Privacy Policy may affect our use of personally identifiable information that you provided us prior to our notification to you of the changes. 


Contact Us

If you have questions or wish to send us comments about this Privacy Policy, please write us at: 

National Geographic Society
Attn: Marketing Services - Privacy
1145 17th Street NW
Washington, DC 20036-4688

This policy was last updated December 2015