Who We Are
The Austin Families Association, forerunner of the Austin Families Association of America (AFAOA), was founded by siblings Edith Austin Moore and Henry Warner Austin in 1942. AFAOA is a private, non-commercial genealogy organization whose mission is to research and preserve genealogical data relating to all Austin family lines who came to America, and to make that information freely available to interested researchers.
AFAOA is hosted by EasyNetSites.com. This software provides our display pages, Members Only services, data storage, and PayPal portal. Only members require a login to the website. This enables members to access extra data and services. Please note that our website and our database require separate logins. (You may use the same login ID on each site.)
The data in our database were initially compiled manually and published in book form. In the 1990s volunteers entered as much data as possible into early versions of genealogy software; it has been transferred from program to program via GEDCOM since that time. We are currently using a software package known as The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding (TNG). TNG allows us to control access to our database to prevent data-mining by web robots or "bots". We do not knowingly display or distribute genealogical information on living persons without that person's expressed consent. If you believe that data on a living person is being displayed, please contact the Webmaster at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Information We Collect on Our Website
AFAOA does not track individual visitors. We do look at aggregated, anonymized usage that is provided by Google. If you join AFAOA (whether online or using a mailed-in application), we will collect your contact information (address, email address, phone number) in order to service your membership. (For instance, we need your address in order to mail your newsletter.) This information is only accessible by the membership committee. You may optionally share it with other members.
We require an email address to service your membership and notify you of a potential system issue. You can opt out of receiving other, non-membership-related emails.
We do make a list of member names and email addresses available to our membership, but you have the ability to opt out of being listed. We also ask for information such as your known Austin ancestors. Providing this information is optional, but will help us guide you with your research.
If you choose to pay for something online, the transaction is completed through PayPal. We never have any access to your credit card data.
Information We Make Available on the Internet
AFAOA has certain pages, such as our Surname Research page, that are designed to allow search engines to read their contents. A member's use of these pages is entirely optional. All data made available to search engines is either completely anonymized (Surname Research) or involves people who are deceased (e.g., cemetery listings).
Information We Collect for Our Database (TNG)
We only ask for a user's name, email address, and password when registering on the site. (All other registration information -- such as address -- is optional.) We require a valid email address only to verify that a person (not a 'bot') is registering, and to notify users if we detect any potential data breach. Note that all passwords are "one-way encrypted"; the Webmaster cannot read anyone's password.
We do no internet marketing other than being available via search engines. We do not routinely send newsletters to non-members. We don't give, sell, or rent email addresses or other member data to anyone.
TNG provides a convenience feature called "Bookmarks", which allows the user to bookmark pages for future reference. These Bookmarks rely on persistent cookies. You may delete the cookies at any time, but will lose your bookmarks. Use of Bookmarks is entirely optional. AFAOA has no access to these cookies; they reside on your machine only. Bookmarks must be set separately on each browser you use.
AFAOA does not use any third-party marketing or tracking cookies in the database.
This policy was last updated February 17, 2021.