Personal information is information or an opinion about an identified individual or a reasonably identifiable individual. In this connection “opinion” means information not of a strictly formal nature that we may collect in connection with your membership—for example, records of your membership-related inquiries.
Sensitive information is a subset of personal information, and includes information about your health. The Privacy Act imposes special obligations on the collection, use and disclosure of sensitive information.
The personal information we collect and hold is what is reasonably necessary for our business functions and activities. The personal information we collect may include:
We collect personal information that you provide us directly, including when you:
We may automatically collect some information when you visit our website, such as your computer's IP address and operating system details, the site from which you linked to us, your site activity, the time and date of your visit, and any purchases. This information may be collected through the use of "cookies" and web beacons (see Online Specifics below).
We also obtain information from third parties including those who help us correct our records, prevent fraud, and provide Member Services or special promotions or products (see Member Services below). We may combine any of this information with the other personal information we maintain about you.
We will not collect sensitive information about you unless you consent (we take your provision of the information to be consent to its collection), and the information is reasonably necessary for one or more of our functions or activities. If we collect any sensitive personal information about you, that information will only be used and disclosed by us for the purpose that it was provided by you.
The personal information we collect is generally used to:
We may not be able to do these things without your personal information. For example, we may not be able to provide you with our services or communicate with you.
We may share your personal information for the purpose for which it was collected.
We may share your personal information with:
Subject to the requirements of the Privacy Act, we may also share it for another purpose if you would reasonably expect us to and the purpose is related to the purpose for which it was collected.
We share personal information in these circumstances:
We may provide your personal information to third parties, as necessary to fulfill a transaction or respond to a question or claim about products or services you have purchased from or are supplying to us. However, we give third parties, and others involved in the distribution chain only the information useful or necessary to facilitate the transaction. We are not responsible for any information you provide directly to these parties, and we encourage you to become familiar with their practices before disclosing information directly to them.
We may offer special products and services to our members through third parties, such as rebates, financial, travel, insurance and other business and consumer services ("Member Services"). We may share your name, postal address, email address and membership status, number and type ("Member Information") with these third parties in order to notify you of their offerings, to determine whether, or at what level, you qualify for the products, offerings or services, and to evaluate new and existing products, offerings or services. If you prefer that we not share Member Information with third parties, you can contact us at any time (see Choice below).
These third parties are required by us to use personal information we share only to provide the requested services. We are not responsible for any additional information you provide directly to these parties, and we encourage you to become familiar with their privacy practices and policies before disclosing information to them. Information you provide to third parties, may in turn be shared with us along with information about your use of the services. In some cases, these third parties may require as a condition of providing services to you that you authorize them to share information with us. If we terminate our relationship with a third party, information you provided to them may be returned to us, and we may provide that information to a new third party offering the same or similar services.
We may contract with others to perform services on our behalf. For example, we might retain a company to process credit card payments, assist us with fraud control, distribute emails, process rebates or analyze data. If any of these service providers need access to your personal information, we require them to use it only to perform the services for us. We also require that they maintain the confidentiality of the information and/or return the information to us when they no longer need it. Some of our contractors may be located outside of Australia or may store data in the cloud. Click here for a list of countries where our contractors may be located.
Each membership account has an individual primary account holder who is authorized to designate and remove a household member and make other account management decisions. We may disclose the Personal Information such as name, contact information and member number to the primary account holder.
We may disclose your information in the cloud or to organisations outside Australia. For example, we may use a server hosted overseas for storage and back up of data including your personal information.
If we disclose your personal information to an overseas recipient, we will take reasonable steps before disclosure to ensure that the overseas recipient will not breach the APPs. We are likely to disclose your personal information to overseas recipients for the purpose of storage in the United States, Canada, EU countries, Taiwan, Singapore and/or India.
In addition, we may use or disclose personal information in the good faith belief that we are lawfully authorized to do so, or that doing so is reasonably necessary to protect you, to comply with legal process or authorities, to respond to any claims, or to protect the rights, property or personal safety of Costco Wholesale, our Members, our employees or the public. Information about our Members, including personal information, may be disclosed or transferred as part of, or during negotiations of, any merger or sale of company assets or acquisition.
We hold personal information electronically and in hard copy form, both at our own premises and with the assistance of our service providers. We have physical, contractual, administrative and technical security measures in place to protect personal information from loss, misuse or alteration while it is under our control.
We are required to process card payments in accordance with the data security rules adopted by credit card companies. This means that we do not retain card numbers or security codes.
If you are a member, we give you choices related to your personal information, and numerous methods to inform us of your decision. The choices will apply to each individual you list on your membership application. Each individual, however, must contact us separately to change their information choices.
Please note, even if you opt-out of receiving Promotional Information , Costco may contact you for informational purposes, such as administration of your account or to alert you about product recalls or safety issues.
The information collected through cookies may identify your IP address or Device ID. By using our website, you consent to the collection of your information for this purpose.
We may also use web beacons to determine when and how many times a page has been viewed. Again, we use this information for our own marketing purposes.
We encourage parents to take an active interest in their children's use of the Internet. We do not intend to collect information from children who are under 18 years of age. If you are under 18, you should not provide information on the costco.com.au website.
Depending on your request, we may need to verify your identity.
We will endeavour to deal with your request within a reasonable time and provide you with our reasons, if we do not agree to allow you to review or correct your personal information. Where we decide not to make a requested correction to your personal information and you disagree, you may ask us to make a note of your requested correction with the information. In accordance with the Privacy Act, we reserve the right to charge you for providing access to any personal information we hold about you.
If you contact us regarding any privacy concerns, we may request additional details from you, and may need to engage or consult with other parties in order to investigate and deal with your issue. We will keep records of your request and any resolution.
Costco has other policies that address personal information related to employees and vendors. For information about these policies you may contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last update of this policy: October, 2015