Policy concerning privacy on SNCB websites and apps

General and specific privacy policy by NMBS/SNCB

I. General

We understand that your privacy is important to you, which is why we do whatever it takes to respect it. We wish to immediately reassure you. Your personal data will only be used by NMBS/SNCB, public limited company (rue de France 56, 1060 Brussels). We do not provide your personal data to third parties that want to use them to recommend their own products or services. Below, you will find more details on how we use your data.

When you decide to provide us your personal data (for example by filling in a request form for a reduction card), you confirm that you formally agree with these conditions and/or (depending on the case) you vouch for the fact that these conditions have been communicated to the people to whom the personal data refer and that these have been accepted by those people.

For which purposes do we use your data?
By providing us your personal data, you agree with the fact that we process them in order to handle your question, message or request, to offer you the services you wish, to carry out the agreement you concluded with us, to offer you after-sales service and to continuously improve our services and adapt them to your needs, in particular by offering you personal services that might interest you, on the basis of your client profile. We also use your data to inform you, to perform market studies and satisfaction surveys or to develop products.

Those data can be transferred to other natural or legal persons acting as subcontractors for NMBS/SNCB. In that case, they only have access to the data they need to perform their task.
In addition, we can also transfer your data to competent authorities in the framework of imminent or pending legal procedures. These third parties act as "data controllers" for the execution of this processing or other personal data processing. For further information about this processing, we refer you to the applicable privacy policy of these third parties.

By communicating us your personal data, you expressly acknowledge and accept that, in the framework of the processing of the personal data mentioned, data may be transferred to countries outside the European Economic Area which do not offer a similar level of protection for personal data.

Would you rather not have your personal data gathered, processed or shared?
In accordance with the law of 8 December 1992 concerning the protection of privacy with regard to the processing of personal data, you can freely oppose against the processing of your data for direct marketing purposes at any time. You are entitled to access your data, request corrections or to have your data removed if so desired. Send your written request including proof of identity to Service clientèle SNCB, Avenue de la Porte de Hal 40, 1060 Brussels or to privacy@b-rail.be. You can also contact us if you do not or no longer wish to receive information on the NMBS/SNCB offer.

If you have a My NMBS/SNCB account, you can manage and modify your profile data yourself and choose to no longer receive e-mails or text messages from NMBS/SNCB.

We commit ourselves to take all the appropriate technical and organisational measures needed to protect your personal data from destruction, loss, involuntary modifications, deterioration or disclosure. In order to guarantee this security, we carry out regular back-ups, among other things.

II. Specific case: irregularities and when you have forgotten your railcard

When you contact us to pay a fixed fine for an irregularity or to be in order again after having forgotten your railcard, we ask you to provide us certain personal data. We use those data with a view to allowing you to pay fixed fines as a result of an irregularity and in order to prevent fraud.

III. Specific case: the MOBIB card

In the framework of the purchase/use of a MOBIB card or of a travel ticket valid on the network of several Belgian public transport operators, personal data are exchanged between the operators involved. Those data include personal information regarding the owner of the MOBIB card and information regarding the MOBIB card and the uploaded travel ticket. Thanks to that exchange, the provider in question can perform the management of the travel tickets, the after-sales service, fraud management, technical management and client management. During that exchange, all legal obligations regarding the protection of privacy are observed. These third parties act as a "data controller" in relation to the processing of these data in their system, in accordance with their privacy policy. For more information on this matter, we refer you to the current privacy policy of these public transport operators, which is available on their respective websites.

IV. And when you visit our websites and use our apps?

Please be aware of the fact that, when you visit our websites and use our apps, you provide certain personal data to NMBS/SNCB, even by simply opening those websites.

A) Scope

Read this section of our privacy policy to find out more about the way in which we collect and process your personal data on our websites (www.thetrain.be and m.sncb.be, hereinafter referred to as the "website") and, if applicable, in the apps ("NMBS/SNCB" mobile applications available for download on smartphones and tablets via app stores and m.sncb.be, hereinafter referred to as the "apps").

By buying train tickets for travel in Belgium or for cross-border travel, as well as associated products, and booking services on the website or apps, by using the website and/or apps and communicating personal data, you formally agree with the conditions indicated below by virtue of which NMBS/SNCB collects, processes and transfers personal data and/or (depending on the case) you vouch for the fact that these conditions have been communicated to the people to whom the personal data refer and that these have been accepted by these people.

B) Collection, processing and purpose of personal data on the website and in the apps 

During each visit to the website or when using the apps, different personal data and log files concerning you are collected, notably your IP address, the website from which you were redirected to this website, the date and duration of your visit, your browser, your operating system, your browsing behaviour and, more specifically, the pages you visit.

We use these data solely for statistical purposes and in order to analyse and optimise the functioning and use of the website and the apps. To that end, we call upon the services of third parties to which these data are communicated for these purposes.

Whenever your visit is not limited to collecting general information and, more specifically, when, on or via the website and/or apps:

i. you buy a travel ticket or an associated product,
ii. you pay fixed fines online as a result of an irregularity,
iii. you book a service or assistance,
iv. you contact NMBS/SNCB,
v. you sign up for a My NMBS/SNCB account,
vi. you take part in a contest,
vii. you agree to receive our newsletter and/or other information about our products and services,
viii. you agree to activate particular services when downloading apps, such as the geolocation, the use of your contacts and/or calendar,

additional data are also requested and/or collected, including, if applicable, your gender, name, e-mail address, current position, password, order history, telephone number, address and language.

We use those data

i. with a view to providing you with a travel ticket, an associated product or service and, if applicable, additional information about this with a view to delivering and following up the corresponding products or services and guaranteeing a qualitative after-sales service
ii. with a view to being able to deal with any of your questions, messages or requests and to reply to them whenever required
iii. with a view to allowing you to pay fixed fines as a result of an irregularity
iv. with a view to being able to allow you to take full advantage of your My NMBS/SNCB account, which includes a My Train Info subscription (text message when one of your favourite trains is late if you have a valid train card), simplification of certain operations (online assistance request for passengers with reduced mobility, purchase of validations for your train card or MOBIB card, ... payment of a fixed fine for an irregularity), access to your order history and your data as well as management of your data, including for personalised marketing purposes
v. with a view to allowing you to take part in contests and to informing you about its organisation and outcome
vi. in order to provide you with newsletters
vii. with a view to constantly improving the service offered to you and to adapt it to your needs, in particular by offering personalised services likely to be of interest to you on the basis of customer profiles
viii. with a view to informing you and allowing you to participate in market research and satisfaction surveys concerning our products and services
ix. with a view to allowing you to take advantage of the additional services in the apps, such as localizing the nearest station based on your localisation data, saving your itinerary in your calendar or communicating these times to people of your choice

and may, to that end, be transferred to third parties or subcontractors.

C) Specific processing in case of ticket purchases

To avoid any fraud with ticket purchases, NMBS/SNCB verifies the data you provide in every transaction. NMBS/SNCB will process those data and can decide to refuse or suspend ticket purchases on the basis of that processing. NMBS/SNCB is not under the obligation to inform you beforehand if it decides to proceed to a refusal or a suspension. NMBS/SNCB can proceed to such a refusal or suspension when it suspects that a contractual obligation will not be observed and/or fraud or deceit will be involved. That suspicion can for example be based on doubts regarding the client's or traveller's identity, regarding an usually high order volume or if there already have been payment problems in the past for that specific client or traveller.
In the framework of an online ticket order, NMBS/SNCB uses the tool "Fraud Expert", which is linked to a remote processing by a subcontractor of NMBS/SNCB. Your personal data will be provided to and processed by Ingenico e-Commerce Solutions SPRL (hereafter: "Ingenico"). Ingenico processes your data to prevent and fight fraud (which includes: defining the risk level linked to the transaction, detecting and managing certain warnings resulting from that, informing the vendor so he can make a decision on the basis of those data, manually verifying transactions implying a certain risk level, elaborating a model on the basis of the scores). Your personal data are provided to the relevant departments at Ingenico, to NMBS/SNCB and to third parties that act as a subcontractor for Ingenico or NMBS/SNCB to enable the payment process and the offered services.
Fraud can lead to your personal data being registered in a specific file on fraud kept by Ingenico. That file is aimed at storing data on fraud committed in the past in order to be able to define the criteria used to assess the risk of transactions and the scoring model linked to that risk. If your data is included in that file, it could mean that, when placing your next order with NMBS/SNCB or another vendor active in the same sector and using Ingenico's services, you may be considered a higher fraud risk and that they can therefore refuse your order.
In accordance with the privacy requirements, you have the right to access, consult and rectify the data collected by Ingenico in the framework of the tool "Fraud Expert" and, taking into account the legal restrictions, the right to oppose the processing of data that are not relevant or are redundant. You can exercise those rights by sending a written request to: Ingenico e-Commerce Solutions SPRL - Service juridique « protection de la vie privée » (Legal department, 'Privacy Protection') - Boulevard de la Woluwe 102 – B-1200 Brussels (Belgium) or by sending an electronic request by e-mail to: privacy@ecom.ingenico.com. In order for your request to be valid, you must always provide a signed copy of a valid identity card.

D) Cookies

The website uses "cookies", which are small data files which are saved temporarily or permanently on your computer or device by a website's server via the browser, and which simplify, complete and personalise the use of the website
In your browser, you can deactivate the storage of cookies or remove any stored cookies but this may lead to reduced functionality, a slowdown in the service or the inability to use certain parts of the website. 
For further information about cookies and how to remove them according to the type of browser used, we refer you to the following website: www.allaboutcookies.org.

We use the following cookies:

(i) Strictly necessary cookies

These are cookies that enable you to consult a website, to use the functions on the website (such as your shopping cart when placing an order) and to obtain access to secured or registered parts. If the use of these cookies is deactivated, you may not be able to use certain parts of the website correctly.

(ii) Functionality cookies

These are cookies that enable us to remember your choices and preferences (such as language choice), to enhance the user-friendliness of the website and to show you relevant information.

(iii) Performance-enhancing cookies

These are cookies that are aimed at collecting information about the way you use the website, such as information on the visited pages or the number of error messages shown, in order to analyse and optimise the use of the website.

Performance-enhancing cookies are also known as analytical cookies. It is possible that the information collected by using these cookies is collected by a third party. In order to provide information to NMBS/SNCB to improve its website and services, those third parties act as a subcontractor for NMBS/SNCB. Below, you will find more information on those third parties and the way they use the information collected through the cookies.

Google Analytics
The website uses Google Analytics. This web analysis service, offered by Google Inc. ("Google"), uses analytical cookies. The information on a visitor's use of a website by using the cookies is sent to Google, along with the visitor's IP address and is stored by Google.
Google can use that information to do the following:

i. Provide advertisers and websites that host advertisements with reports on their advertising activity and making sure that those website publishers are being paid
ii. Help website and app owners who use Google Analytics to understand how visitors use their sites or apps
iii. Detect and fight fraud and other security risks to protect users and partners
iv. Observe its legal obligations
v. Improve its products

For all those activities, excepting point 2), Google is responsible for the processing. The data on your use of the website that are collected by Google are therefore processed on Google's responsibility.

How can you control which information is sent to Google?
Below you will find different ways of managing which information is shared by your web browser when you visit the website:

  • If you don't want Google Analytics to be used in your browser, you can install the browser-add-on for Google Analytics. More information on Google Analytics and privacyIf you are logged in to your Google-account, you can consult and edit certain data on sites and apps that you have visited that are collected by Google, depending on your account settings.
  • The incognito mode in Chrome allows you to browse the internet without storing web pages and files in your browser history. The cookies are deleted once you have closed all incognito windows and tabs. Your bookmarks and settings are stored until you delete them.
  • The advertisement settings allow you to manage which Google advertisements are shown on the internet. You can discover how advertisements are selected for you, you can deactivate personalised advertisements and block specific advertisers. More information on advertisements

Firebase Analytics
In the apps, NMBS/SNCB uses Firebase Analytics, an analytical tool developed by Google. That tool collects statistical information on how users use the app, for example the functions they use, the data they enter.
The tool uses the advertising ID that is linked to the Android or iOS operating system on your smartphone or tablet. That ID is not linked to the smartphone's phone number or to the smartphone's physical user. In other words, it is impossible for NMBS/SNCB to identify you on the basis of the advertising ID.
During the first phase, the information that was collected will be used to improve the app.

You don't want Firebase to store how you use the app?
You can do the following:
In your iPhone settings, go to "Privacy", then "Advertising" (all the way at the bottom). Tap on "Reset advertising ID" and activate the slider "Limit Ad Tracking".
On an Android phone, go to "Google Settings", then "Ads". Tap on "Reset advertising ID". Then switch on "Opt out of Ads Personalization".

Social media networks
The NMBS/SNCB website and apps may include third-party applications allowing you to share website content with others, to inform others of your visit or to share your opinion on website or app content. This is particularly the case with the "Share" and "Like" buttons on social media networks such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. Social media networks offering such app buttons may, where appropriate, place cookies on your browser and use this button to identify you.  In the same way, a social media network may place cookies on your browser when visiting the NMBS/SNCB social media web page.  NMBS/SNCB refers you to the privacy policy of these social media networks so that you are aware of the use, in particular with regard to advertising, of browsing data which may, where appropriate, be collected in this regard. 

(iv) Publicity cookies

These cookies we use are aimed at offering you personalised and more relevant advertisements, deciding how many times a certain ad has been shown, to calculate the effectiveness of an advertising campaign, to store data on a previous visit and to share the collected data with the third parties involved, such as the advertisers. They are used on the website and placed on your device by third parties such as companies linked to NMBS/SNCB and advertisers who are part of the website's publicity network.

NMBS/SNCB uses the following publicity cookies:

The website uses Google Remarketing and Doubleclick. These tools place cookies on your device to show you personalised advertisements that take your previous visits to the website into account. Above, in point (iii), underneath Google Analytics, you will find more information on what Google can do with the information that is collected. You can find additional information by using the following link.
The Google Remarketing and Doubleclick tools use Google's Display Advertising network.
You can disable those cookies at any time in your browser settings using the following Google link or the link offered by www.youronlinechoice.com.

The website uses Facebook Pixel. This is an image which is not visible to you, but which is included on the pages of our website and stored on the Facebook servers. Every time you open a page of our site on which the Facebook pixel is included, that pixel is downloaded onto your device from that Facebook server. The following data are provided to Facebook: your IP address and the specific characteristics of your device (for example: type, operating system, specific software and hardware).
Whereas we cannot link those data to you personally, Facebook can link those data to you if you also have a Facebook profile. In that case Facebook acts as data controller in relation to the processing. We invite you to consult Facebook's privacy policy so that you are aware of the purposes (in particular with regard to advertising) for which the browsing data collected by Facebook are used.  
We only receive statistical information from Facebook, not your personal data.
If you do not wish to receive certain advertisements, you can modify your advertising preferences on your personalised Facebook page. Finally, you can indicate in the settings of your mobile device that the device data cannot be communicated to third parties.

V. Contact details

Nationale Maatschappij der Belgische Spoorwegen/Société Nationale des Chemins de Fer Belges (NMBS/SNCB), a public limited company, rue de France 56, 1060 Brussels (LER Brussels: BE 0203.430.576).
NMBS/SNCB is responsible for processing these personal data and ensures their confidentiality and security.
You can contact us at the following address: Service clientèle SNCB, Avenue de la Porte de Hal 40, 1060 Brussels, or by sending an e-mail to privacy@b-rail.be.
NMBS/SNCB reserves the right to modify this privacy policy at any time.

Cookie Policy

By using the NMBS/SNCB website you consent to the use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy. For more information about the cookies we use and manage, please read our full cookie policy.