• By using the NBN Atlas websites you are agreeing to be bound by these Terms of Use, including the Privacy Policy
  • When contributing content, submitting a dataset or images to the NBN Atlas you are agreeing to these Terms of Use
  • Content accessed through the NBN Atlas may be subject to specific terms and conditions imposed by the Data Partner
  • Data and images on the NBN Atlas have an associated licence outlining the circumstances under which the data can be used
  • Data with a CC-BY-NC licence cannot be used for commercial purposes without prior agreement of the data provider
  • If you wish to use content otherwise than in accordance with the Data Partner’s licence you must have permission from the Data Partner
  • Data users who breach the licence conditions may be liable for a fixed charge
  • Content available on NBN Atlas websites are provided ‘as is’ and ‘as available’ you must exercise your own skill, judgement and care with respect to their use or your reliance on them.

These terms and conditions apply to the NBN Atlas and all associated portals.

1.General terms of use

1.1 Introduction

By using the NBN Atlas website(s) and the Content available on and through it, you are agreeing to be bound by these Terms of Use, which include the Privacy Policy.

The NBN Atlas is an internet based data delivery service. The site is available for use by anyone to make biodiversity data that they hold available for others to view and use in line with the NBN Atlas Terms of Use.

Content that you access through the NBN Atlas website may also be subject to specific terms and conditions imposed by a Data Partner (Data Partner Terms). These Data Partner Terms may include certain licences to use the Content, such as Creative Commons licences.

The Data Partner Terms and the Terms of Use form the legally binding agreement between you, the NBN Atlas and/or the Data Partner. If there is any inconsistency between these Terms of Use and the Data Partner Terms then the Data Partner Terms will prevail, but only to the extent that it applies to the particular Contents and to the extent necessary to resolve any conflict.

If a user is found to have breached the Data Partner Terms, NBN Atlas Terms of Use or the licence conditions associated with data accessed through the NBN Atlas, the NBN Trust may issue a Fixed Charge Notice (FCN).

We may change these Terms of Use or a Data Partner may change their Data Partner Terms at any time without giving you notice, so please check them each time you visit the NBN Atlas website.

1.2 Terminology

The ‘Atlas’ means the NBN Atlas, including the NBN Atlas Scotland, NBN Atlas Wales, NBN Atlas Northern Ireland and NBN Atlas Isle of Man projects and in the context of the agreement between you and the Atlas that these Terms of Use represent, the Atlas is the National Biodiversity Network Trust (NBN Trust – as the legal entity representing and responsible for the Atlas project.

You/user – means you as a website user, Content/Data user, or Data Partner.

Data Partner – means an individual or organisation that makes Content available on or via the Atlas website.

Atlas website – means the  website with the URL (or any URL replacing it or containing it within the URL including but not limited to and associated web services, internet publishing tools, software, tools etc.

Content – means contributions or content; includes, but is not limited to, multimedia such as videos, sound files, photos, other images, music; textual material such as reviews, annotations, comments, forum and blog postings, information; biodiversity related information such as species names, morphology, taxonomy, behaviour, habitat, annotations, occurrence/sighting data, geospatial/location data, records, metadata; databases, datasets. Content may also include or be referred to as Data as the context requires, or as set out in an NBN Atlas Data Partner Agreement, although Data is intended to be primarily the biodiversity related information outlined above.

1.3 Registration

In order to submit or use Content on the NBN Atlas website or to utilise certain NBN Atlas services or software you may be required to register to establish an account/user profile with the NBN Atlas.

When registering, a genuine email address must be provided.

The NBN Atlas recommends that you register using a pen name, nickname or pseudonym as your login name. You must not impersonate another living person or registered user. The Atlas may refuse registration of users whose suggested login names are considered inappropriate by the NBN Atlas.

In some cases the NBN Atlas may ask you to provide your real name or other identifying or contact details – such personal information will be managed in accordance with the NBN Atlas Privacy Policy.

You will ensure that any registration information you give to the NBN Atlas is accurate, correct and up to date.

The NBN Atlas will not accept a registration that the NBN Atlas suspects is being made by or on behalf of someone who has been suspended for violation of these Terms of Use.

You are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality and security of your password(s). You are therefore responsible for everything done or submitted using your account.

If you become aware of any unauthorised use of your account, you should notify the Atlas immediately on

The Atlas may lock, restrict and/or delete your registration or account if you breach these Terms of Use.

1.4 Contributing or uploading Content (including licensing)

When contributing content to the NBN Atlas you are accepting these Terms of Use.

When submitting a dataset to the NBN Atlas you are agreeing to the NBN Atlas Terms of Use

You retain Intellectual Property Rights in the form of Database Rights and any other rights you already hold in Content which you submit, post, display, upload etc. on the Atlas website.

You are free to make available, use or publish your Content elsewhere.

You warrant that you own or created the Content and that you have the necessary rights, licences or permissions to make the Content available on the NBN Atlas website.

You will make reasonable efforts to ensure your Content is accurate at the time you collected or created it or made it available on the NBN Atlas website.

At the time of adding your Content you should nominate the type of licence which will apply to your Content and how Data users can use it. You can select from a number of options, primarily Creative Commons licences. For more information see the NBN’s FAQ on Licensing or the FAQ on Creative Commons.

Where you have not identified any specific terms or licences or Data Partner Terms on the use of Content you contribute to the NBN Atlas, then you grant to the Atlas a non-exclusive, worldwide, free, perpetual, irrevocable licence to:

a)   reproduce, copy, store, cache, manage, display, publish, distribute, use, reproduce, adapt, modify, make derivatives, change into other formats and incorporate it into other works or collections, for non-commercial purposes and the activities that the Atlas undertakes; and

b)   make available the Content and derivatives in accordance with the NBN Atlas Terms and a Creative Commons – Attribution 4.0 licence 

Any data records for species that are listed on the Sensitive Species List will be blurred to the resolution stated in the list (in other words, the data will not be published in full). Sensitive records provided to the NBN Atlas at a higher resolution (that is, the full data) are subject to a Restricted Re-use Licence issued by the relevant Data Partner. These records that are visible on the NBN Atlas at a blurred resolution will be subject to a Creative Commons licence as determined by the Data Partner.

Note in some cases Content may be in the public domain, in the sense that it is not subject to IPR protection because, for example, it has expired or it does not qualify for copyright, e.g. individual species sightings, ideas, facts, names, styles, titles, slogans. You will not seek to assert any intellectual property rights over this public domain Content.

1.5 Using the Content

If you use or download Content from the NBN Atlas website you:

  • recognise that it is protected by database rights and other intellectual property rights and will respect those rights
  • agree to acknowledge, reference or attribute the relevant Data Partner (using any specific attribution wording they may have provided) in any derived information product, work or publication that is based on the relevant Content
  • will comply with any Data Partner Terms that the Data Partner may indicate regarding its use, e.g. personal use only, non-commercial use, not make derivatives etc.
  • will comply with any licence conditions associated with the Data
  • recognise that users who breach the licence conditions may be liable for a fixed charge
  • will not remove any identifier of ownership or terms of use that is associated with the Content or Data record
  • recognise that the Content is provided without any warranty regarding its quality, accuracy, completeness, currency, relevance or suitability for any particular purpose and that you use the Content at your own risk (see Disclaimer)
  • respect any restrictions regarding the availability of the Data, such as sensitive data.
  • Any records for species identified on the Sensitive Species List are subject to a Restrictive Re-use licence issued by the Data Partner. Requests for enhanced access to this Data should be made directly to the Data Partner who may impose additional restrictions on its use.
  • Sensitive species data that have been blurred and are publicly available on the NBN Atlas may be used under a Creative Commons licence as determined by the Data Partner.

Your use of Content may also be subject to specific terms and conditions imposed by a Data Partner (Data Partner Terms). You must comply with these Data Partner Terms. Where they exist they will be available through the metadata with the Content or shown with the Content.

If you want to use Content otherwise than in accordance with the Data Partner’s licence you need the approval or permission of the Data Partner.

N.B. Using information gained by viewing data on the NBN Atlas for commercial purposes is a breach of the CC-BY-NC licence, i.e. data does not have to have been downloaded for the licence conditions to apply.

A single page on the NBN Atlas website may be made up of many different datasets, each covered by a different licence. You are required to check to see which licence applies to any portion(s) of the page or Content record you wish to use and abide by any restrictions on the Content.

1.6 Misuse of the Content

Unauthorised use of any Content, or breach of the licence granted to you to access and use the Data, may (at the Atlas’ discretion) result in a fixed charge to you. A summary of the fixed charges are set out from time to time on the Atlas website (TBC). The Atlas reserves the right to claim for damages as an alternative to the fixed charge. For the avoidance of doubt, the levying of a fixed charge in any case is not to be taken as an admission that the damages available to the Atlas are lower than the amount of the fixed charge.

1.7 Contributing to forums, making comments, posting information (Contributions, sharing)

Children’s contributions and use of Content should be supervised by an adult.

You are legally responsible for your contributions.

The Atlas may decide in its sole discretion what contributions are published on the Atlas website (but is not obliged to do so).

You must not submit contributions that:

  • are defamatory, malicious, threatening, offensive, abusive, obscene, or otherwise unlawful or that violates laws regarding harassment, discrimination, racial vilification, privacy or contempt
  • are intentionally false or misleading
  • are an infringement of copyright or other intellectual property rights
  • seek to promote or endorse commercial products or services or to solicit business
  • deliberately provoke other community members, or are inappropriate, repetitive or off topic
  • compromise your privacy or that of other contributors or that contain inappropriate personal information
  • compromise sensitive data or confidential information around a particular species or observation.

You should be aware that your contributions may remain online indefinitely.

1.8 Intellectual Property Rights

This Atlas website and its Content are protected by Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) law. IPR in this material resides with the Atlas or various other Data Partners or other third parties as may be indicated.

The Atlas has accessed Content from many different sources. All reasonable efforts have been made to ensure that we have properly acknowledged/attributed the source of the Content and obtained the necessary permissions. If, however, you believe that we have not properly accessed your Content please do not hesitate to contact and we will address your concerns.

Many of the trade marks or logos displayed on the Atlas such as those of Data Partners or the Atlas of Living Australia are registered trade marks. The trade marks of third parties are also displayed on the Atlas website. All these trade marks cannot be used without the express written permission of the Atlas or the relevant third party

1.9 Disclaimer

The Atlas website, linked websites and Content are intended to provide information for general and scientific use, to assist research and public knowledge, discussion and policy development.

The Atlas makes the Atlas website and Content available on the understanding that you use them at your own risk – they are provided ‘as is’ and ‘as available’ and you exercise your own skill, judgement and care with respect to their use or your reliance on them.

The Atlas and Data Partners give no warranty regarding the quality, accuracy, completeness, currency, relevance or suitability for any particular purpose of the Content or the Atlas website.

To the fullest extent permitted by applicable law, the Atlas (including its employees and contractors), the National Biodiversity Network Trust and Data Partner exclude all liability to any person for any consequences, including but not limited to all losses, damages (including indirect, special or consequential damages, loss of business, revenue/profit, loss of time etc.), costs, expenses and any other compensation, arising directly or indirectly from your use of the Atlas website or Content or inability to access the Atlas website.

If you find any inaccurate, out of date or incomplete Content on the Atlas website, or if you suspect that something is an infringement of intellectual property rights, you must let us know immediately by contacting or the Data Partner of the Content.

1.10 Personal information

Our Privacy Policy (below) forms part of the Atlas Terms of Use and describes how we use your personal information when you use the Atlas website.

Whenever you give us personal information you are consenting to its collection and use in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

As a user of the Atlas website you must not use any personal information made available to you on this Atlas website for any purpose other than:

  • in the case of an individual who made a particular record, e.g. sighting/observation data, to verify the details of that record and/or to acknowledge them as the relevant creator, and
  • in the case of an individual administering a dataset, to contact them directly to request greater access, further information and/or support.

1.11 Links to external websites

The Atlas is all about bringing together biodiversity information from a host of sources. As such the Atlas provides links to a range of external websites; however, we do not have direct control over the content of the linked websites nor the changes that may occur to content on those websites.

It is your responsibility to make your own decisions about the accuracy, completeness, currency, relevance or suitability for any particular purpose of the content on external websites.

The Atlas is not responsible for, and does not endorse, the content on external websites.

The Atlas publishes links to external websites at its discretion, and reserves the right to remove user-posted links to external websites for any reason and at any time.

1.12 Linking to the Atlas website

We encourage use of links on external websites to the Atlas homepage or other relevant pages on the Atlas website.

Such links should not suggest that your website, organisation or services/products are endorsed by the Atlas.

The Atlas reserves the right to prevent linking or framing by giving notice on the Atlas website.

Please advise us of any links you make to the Atlas website.

1.13 Security of the Atlas website

The internet exists across insecure, public networks and there is a risk that transmissions to or from this website may be intercepted and modified by third parties or that files obtained from or through this website may contain computer viruses, disabling codes, worms or other defects.

The Atlas accepts no liability for any interference with or damage to your computer system, software, or data occurring in connection with or relating to the Atlas website or its use including the tools provided. You are encouraged to take appropriate and adequate precautions to ensure that whatever is selected from this website is free of viruses or other contamination that may interfere with or damage your computer system, software or data.

You must not try to circumvent the security features of this Atlas website, or tamper with, hack into, or in some other way disrupts any computer system, server, website, router or other device used to host this website or make it available.

1.14 Email addresses on the Atlas website

The presence of email addresses on the Atlas website does not infer consent to send unsolicited commercial electronic messages (email) to those addresses.

1.15 General

These Terms of Use are governed by English law.

The NBN Trust irrevocably agrees to submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales over any claim or matter arising from or in connection with these Terms of Use or the legal relationships established by or in connection with these Terms of Use.

No delay, neglect or forbearance on the part of Atlas in enforcing these Terms of Use will be, or deemed to be, a waiver. Nor will it prejudice any rights of the Atlas.

2.Citing the Atlas

Please refer to the guidelines to cite the NBN Atlas.

3.Photo Credits

Photographs displayed on the Atlas website remain the property of the photographer or institution and are provided to the Atlas under specific licensing arrangements.

To reveal the licence conditions, e.g. download or re-use a photo, click on the photo. The source and licence are listed under the photo.

Click on the SOURCE: hyperlink for more information about the photo.

If there is no licensing information, contact us at

4.Privacy Policy

Important Information

By using this NBN Atlas (Atlas) website and the Content available on and through it, you are agreeing to be bound by this Privacy Policy and the overall Terms of Use.

The purpose of this Privacy Policy is to set out how the Atlas will deal with personal information gathered by the Atlas when you visit and use the site.

Personal information collected by the Atlas is governed by the Data Protection Act 1998.

Learn about:

  • Terminology
  • Site visit data
  • Collection and use of personal information
  • Cookies
  • Interaction with the Atlas website
  • External links
  • Security of information
  • Contact details


Atlas – means the NBN Atlas, including NBN Atlas Scotland, NBN Atlas Wales, NBN Atlas Northern Ireland and NBN Atlas Isle of Man projects and in the context of this Privacy Policy, the Atlas is the National Biodiversity Network Trust (NBN Trust) as the legal entity representing and responsible for the Atlas project.

You/user – means you as a website user, content/data user, or content/data provider.

The Atlas website – the website with the URL (or any URL replacing it) and associated web services, internet publishing tools, software, tools etc.

Personal information is information relating to an individual whose identity is apparent, or can reasonably be ascertained, from the information or opinion provided.

Site visit data

The Atlas website is operated by the Atlas without the use of an external service provider. When visiting the Atlas website, a record of your visit is logged. The following information is supplied by your browser or recorded by our servers:

  • the user’s server address
  • the user’s operating system, e.g. Windows, Mac OS
  • the user’s top level domain name, e.g. .org, .com, .gov, .uk
  • the date and time of the visit to the site
  • the pages accessed and the documents/data downloaded
  • the previous site visited
  • search terms used
  • the type of browser used.

We use the site visit data for the purposes of:

  • monitoring, developing and improving the quality of the Atlas website
  • dealing with your inquires and requests
  • usage statistics such as determining traffic through the server, download statistics etc.
  • providing you with information about Atlas services and products.

This site visit data may be aggregated for analysis with identifiable characteristics removed. We may publish or provide this aggregated data to other people, for instance site/page usage statistics around a particular dataset may be provided to the original data provider. We may also provide information to data providers detailing who has downloaded their datasets.  We may also provide usage statistics to the Atlas funding organisations.

Collection and use of personal information

When you email us, use an online form, submit content or data, enter a user profile, access restricted pages or contribute your details to a forum or as a contributor or expert:

  • we will record your name, email address, organisation, city, county and primary user type, and any other personal information as provided
  • we will only use your details for the purpose for which you provided it or directly related reasons. For example, we may provide you with information on relevant events, products or services that we think will be of interest to you.
  • your details will not be passed on for inclusion in any external mailing lists (for example, for use by NBN Trust members) without your consent
  • unless otherwise required to by law, we will not disclose any information you submit without your express permission or except where we may be required by law to disclose certain information

Note also that if you provide your personal information associated with biodiversity related data or records, then users of that data will be able to see the personal information provided, and may use that personal information to verify the details of the particular record, to acknowledge/attribute you as the creator of the record, or contact you to request greater access, further information or support.

Certain personal information may be required such as name and email address to provide a particular Atlas service or product, e.g. dataset, to you or respond to your enquiries. This information may also be used by the Atlas to inform you of additional related products or services or obtain your feedback on the service or product.

We will, at your request, provide you with access to any information which we have collected about you through this portal in accordance with Information ‘Privacy Principle 6, Privacy Act 1988 (Cth)’.

To gain access to this information you should contact us. If you believe that any information is inaccurate, incomplete or out of date, please contact us at and we will revise the relevant information in accordance with Information ‘Privacy Principle 7, Privacy Act 1988 (Cth)’.


A cookie is a small file that a website sends to your browser when you access information at that site. Upon receipt of the information your browser saves the information on your hard-disk (unless your browser doesn’t support cookies). Each time you use your computer to access that same website, the information that was previously received is sent back to the website by your browser. It records information necessary for certain website functions, such as remembering your preferences or settings.

The Atlas may use cookies for some of its interactive features however these cookies collect only enough information to enable website functions.

If you don’t want to accept cookies, you can set your browser and/or firewall to block them. You will still be able to access most Atlas content, but some interactive features will be unavailable.

For more information about cookies, how they are used by websites and how you can change your settings see: the Information Commissioner’s website or Cookie Central.

Interaction with the Atlas website

There are a number of interactive features on the Atlas website that you can contribute to, e.g. forums, mailing lists, reviews, annotations, message boards and emails. Online forms and forums record information on clearly labelled fields. The information you provide will be solely used for the purposes stated on the form/page.

Please keep in mind if you directly disclose or post personal information through the Atlas website on pages such as sightings information, forums or message boards, this information becomes available to anyone with access to the internet and may be collected and used by others. We suggest that you use your discretion and exercise caution when providing your personal information. Therefore, we recommend that you refrain from posting any information that you do not want seen in these public areas.

External links

This site contains links to other sites. The Atlas is not responsible for the privacy practices or the content of such websites.

Security of information

Your personal information will not be released unless the law requires or permits it or your permission is given. We provide a secure environment and a reliable system but you should be aware that there may be inherent risks associated with the transmission of information via the internet. For those who do not wish to use the internet, the Atlas provides alternative ways of obtaining and providing information.

Contact details

If you have any questions about this Privacy Policy or any privacy issues related to this site, please contact


Terms of Use updated on 14 March 2023 and relate to the section “Collection and use of personal information”