Church Websites: Getting Started: Privacy Page FAQ

You’ve probably heard a lot in the news about internet privacy and may have heard the term, “GDPR” thrown around online. Here at Sharefaith, our members’ privacy and security is always a top priority. We emphasize security in everything we do and believe that our members should feel the same when it comes to the privacy and security of those that they interact with, as well. That’s why we’ve taken some time to create this helpful article to explain some of the common questions and concerns revolving around recent updates to internet privacy laws and how you can ensure that your church is in compliance.

Important To Note

This article is meant as a helpful resource to answer general questions about privacy policy and is not meant to be used as legal advice. We always strongly recommend consulting with your own professional legal team or consultant for matters that pertain to your church’s compliance with legal matters.


In this article, we will especially focus on General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Online Privacy Protection Act (CA OPPA). Both are very similar, aiming to protect individuals privacy while they are online, which is a great thing. So, what does this mean for you? Well, churches are always striving to reach out to their respective communities. This means that there are many occasions and methods used to gather information, including things like creating forms, hosting an online member database, and even selling merchandise in some cases. All of these have one specific thing in common, they gather personal data.

The European Commision defines examples of personal data as:

  • a name and surname
  • a home address
  • an email address such as
  • an identification card number
  • location data (for example the location data function on a mobile phone)
  • an Internet Protocol (IP) address
  • a cookie ID*
  • the advertising identifier of your phone
  • data held by a hospital or doctor, which could be a symbol that uniquely identifies a person

So, what should your church’s response be to this? We suggest that it’s always best to err on the side of compliance. So as a company that assists churches in equipping the saints of God by providing an online platform (websites), we see the need to provide a resource for you that will help you educate yourselves about internet privacy and consider whether you ought to implement any changes or seek further legal counsel to ensure your compliance.

As you can see from the above examples of personal data, your church website will probably collect one or more of these bits of information. The GDPR does not prohibit you from gathering that information. Rather, it simply requires that you disclose that you are gathering this information along with what you intend to do with it. This is where having a page that explains your Church Website Privacy Policy may come in handy.

What Is A Church Website Privacy Policy Page?

It is a page that describes what information you are collecting and what you intend to do with it.

An example that would be covered in a privacy policy page could be your church’s policy on using pictures taken from church services and events on your church website or social media pages (along with links to forms where individuals can give consent or opt out).

Here are some examples of real Church Website Privacy Policy pages::

Here are some links to free online resources that will assist you in making your own privacy policy page:

Here are links to the laws, themselves:

As stated previously, this article is meant to be a resource for general information and help you discover on your own how your church should respond to these new privacy laws. This is not intended as legal advice and should only serve as an informative resource.

* Cookies are tiny text files that are stored on a user’s browser. Most cookies contain a unique identifier called a cookie ID: a string of characters that websites and servers associated with the browser on which the cookie is stored. This allows websites and servers to distinguish the browser from other browsers that store different cookies, and to recognize each browser by its unique cookie ID.

Cookies are widely used by websites and servers to provide many of the basic services we find online. If you shop on a website, a cookie allows the website to remember which items you’ve added to your virtual shopping cart. If you set preferences on a website, a cookie allows the website to remember your preferences the next time you visit. Or if you sign into a website, the website might use a cookie to recognize your browser later on, so that you don’t have to sign in again. Cookies also allow websites to collect data about user activity, such as how many unique visitors a page receives per month. All these applications depend on the information stored in cookies.


Was this article helpful?

0 out of 0 found this helpful

Have more questions? Submit a request