Open Data Portal Terms of Use

Compiled by

  • Open Data Task Team
  • Open Government Partnership South Africa (OGP SA)
  • c/o Department of Public Service and Administration, Republic of South Africa


Existing open data portals tend to address two main topics.

  • Terms of use – this relates to use of the website and data sets. In some cases this is broken down into one or more of these:
    • Data policy [1] [2] [3] – which may refer to a specific open government license [4]
    • Moderation policy [5]
    • Code of conduct [6]
    • General website terms of use
  • Privacy – portal use of personal data provided by registered users. Common on other platforms. [7]

In the case of Australia, the Terms of Use and Privacy content are consolidated into one “About” page. [8]

For the pilot phase the recommendation is to adapt the existing DPSA website terms of use to address specific items related to open data, where needed. An expanded version can be developed for later phases which can incorporate

The proposed Terms of Use outlined below is based on the existing DPSA site [9] with open data edits recorded as track changes.


Any person accessing this web site (user) is subject to, and agrees to, the terms and conditions set out in this legal notice. If the user does not wish to be bound by these terms and conditions, the user may not access, display, use or download and/or otherwise copy or distribute content obtained at this web site.

  1. Usage and Copyright
    1. Users may view, copy, download to a local drive, print and distribute the content of this web site, or any part thereof for informational or reference purposes.
    2. By default, open data sets provided through the data portal are available for free and for use without restriction, commercial or otherwise. Where indicated, the data is governed by permissions defined by the data provider and users should consult with the provider before starting commercial projects.
    3. When using open data sets it is not necessary to credit the Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA), Open Government Partnership South Africa (OGPSA) or the entity providing the data, however, users are encouraged to reference the data portal or the provider of the data when doing so.
    4. Users that wish to use content, other than the indicated open data sets, for commercial purposes may only do so with the prior written permission obtained from the Web Administrator at telephone number +27 12 336 1357 or email Any reproduction and/or copy of the content or portion thereof for commercial purposes must include this copyright notice in its entirety: © DPSA 2015: ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

    5. All moral rights and any other rights of the DPSA, OGPSA or other legal entity in respect of which content is contained on this site not expressly granted, are reserved.
  2. Usage and Copyright
    1. All content, data and trademarks not marked as open data sets; including, but not limited to, software, technology, databases, know-how, text, graphics, icons, hyperlinks, private information, designs, program, publication, product, process, or idea described in this web site may be the subject of other rights, including other intellectual property rights, are the property of or licensed to the DPSA, or a legal entity with links to the DPSA, and as such are protected from infringement by South African legislation and international treaties and conventions. Subject to the rights afforded to the user herein, all other rights to all intellectual property on this web site is expressly reserved and access to any content on the site, the user is not licensed.
    2. The DPSA will not make claims to any intellectual property arising from applications or analysis of open data sets, unless indicated as part of a specific event or work commissioned by the DPSA or one of its partners.
  3. Disclaimer
    1. This information on this web site is intended to provide general information on a particular subject or subjects and is not an exhaustive treatment of such subject(s).
    2. It is the sole responsibility of the user to satisfy itself prior to accessing this web site that the web site will meet the user's individual requirements and be compatible with the user's hardware and/or software. Information, ideas and opinions expressed on this site should not be regarded as professional advice or the official opinion of the OGPSA or any other legal entity in respect of which information, ideas and opinions are expressed on this web site. Users are encouraged to consult professional advice before taking any course of action related to information, ideas or opinions expressed on this site.
    3. The OGPSA makes no representations or warranties, implied or otherwise, that, amongst others, the content and technology available from this site are free from errors or omissions or that the service will be 100% uninterrupted and error free or will meet any particular criteria of performance or quality. This site is provided "as is". The DPSA expressly disclaims all implied warranties, including, without limitation, warranties of merchantability, title, fitness for a particular purpose, non-infringement, compatibility, security, and accuracy and makes no express or implied representations or warranties regarding the content of the web site and that the web site has been compiled or supplied to meet the user's individual requirements. Users are encouraged to report any possible errors, malfunctions or offensive material by using the contact-us link.
    4. All open data sets submitted to or accessed through the data portal must be in compliance with current privacy and national security legislation of the Republic of South Africa.
    5. Open data sets provided on the data portal are provided by user departments and agencies, and the DPSA does not guarantee the quality or accuracy, or accept liability for inaccuracies in the open data sets accessible via the site.
    6. The DPSA does not guarantee the accuracy of copyright status of data sets indicated or not indicated on the data portal, and therefore accepts no liability for impact on commercial projects that are affected by copyright.
    7. The DPSA and its implementing partners do not endorse any works derived from open data sets provided on this site, or any links to associated websites or entities, unless indicated.
    8. The use of the content of this web site is at the user’s own risk. The user assumes full responsibility and risk of loss resulting from the use of the content of this site. The DPSA or any of the legal entities in respect of which information are contained on this site, or employees of the DPSA or such entity, will not be liable for any special, indirect, incidental, consequential, or punitive damages or any other damages whatsoever, whether in an action of contract, statute, tort (including, without limitation, negligence), or otherwise, relating to the use of this document or information. If any of the foregoing is not fully enforceable for any reason, the remainder shall nonetheless continue to apply. Subject to sections 43(5) and 43(6) of the Electronic Communications and Transactions Act 25 of 2002, the DPSA shall not be liable for any damage, loss or liability of whatsoever nature arising from the use or inability to use this web site or the services or content provided from and through this web site.
    9. Certain links in the web server lead to resources maintained by third parties over whom the DPSA has no control. The DPSA makes no representations or warranties as to the accuracy of, or any other aspect relating to, those resources.
    10. Once open data sets have been downloaded from the site, the DPSA cannot vouch for their quality and timeliness. In addition, the DPSA cannot vouch for any analyses conducted with data retrieved from this site.
    11. The provisions of Part 2 of Chapter III of the Electronic Communications and Transactions Act 25 of 2002 is hereby excluded from applying to any electronic communications and data messages that you send to the DPSA via this web site. Any communication or data message that you send to the DPSA will be regarded having been received by the DPSA when receipt is acknowledged in writing. You need to follow up should you not receive a response within a reasonable period of time. The DPSA shall not be liable for any failure to respond.
    12. Should you require any information from the DPSA regarding its services or the content of this web site, please direct them such a request using the contact-us link.
  4. Security
    1. Protection

      The DPSA has in place reasonable commercial standards of technology and operational security to protect all information provided by users from loss, misuse, alteration or destruction. All reasonable steps will be taken to secure a user's information. Authorised employees, who are responsible for the maintenance of any sensitive data submitted, are required to maintain the confidentiality of such data. The policy applies to all employees of the DPSA or public bodies that may receive such information from the DPSA. Users undertake not to divulge their user name and passwords to any other person. It is expressly prohibited for any person, business, or entity to gain or attempt to gain unauthorised access to any page on this web site, or to deliver or attempt to deliver any unauthorised, damaging or malicious code to this web site. Any person who delivers or attempts to deliver any unauthorised, damaging or malicious code to this web site or attempts to gain unauthorised access to any page on this web site shall be held criminally liable, and in the event that the DPSA or any public body should suffer any damage or loss, civil damages will be claimed.

    2. Linkage and Framing

      Users should, however, be aware that this web site might contain links to other sites that are not governed by this or any other privacy statement. Any third party site may link to this web site provided that such a link is directed at the home page of this web site. It is expressly prohibited for any person, business, entity or web site to link to any page other than the home page of this web site, without the prior written approval of the DPSA. It is expressly prohibited for any person, business, entity, or web site to frame any page on this web site, including the home page, in any way whatsoever, without the prior written approval of the DPSA.

    3. Links to Third Party Web Sites

      The DPSA may provide links to the user only as a convenience and the inclusion of any link does not imply the DPSA 's endorsement of such sites. Linked web sites or pages are not subject to the control of the DPSA. The DPSA shall not be held responsible or liable, directly or indirectly, in any way for the contents, use, or inability to use or access any linked web sites or any links contained in a linked web site.

    4. Searching Technology

      The use of non-malicious search technology, such as "web-crawlers" or "web-spiders", to search and gain information from this web site is not permitted if such technology will result in slowing down this web site's server or copyright infringement of any data and information available from this web site.

  5. Privacy
    1. Introduction

      The privacy statement is effective with effect from 1 September 2015 and applies to the DPSA and any other legal entity with links to the DPSA, which control and make use of information that, may be collected via this site.

      A user may visit this site without providing any personal information. You, however, agree to the use of such data in accordance with this privacy statement. Please note that this site contains links to other sites, including sites maintained by other private or public institutions, which may not be governed by this privacy statement.

      If you have any questions or concerns regarding this privacy statement or your privacy while using this Web site, please use the contact-us link.

    2. Cookies

      The DPSA may use cookies (small text files stored in a user’s browser) or web beacons (electronic images that allow the Web site to count users who have accessed a particular page and to access certain cookies) to ensure that the web site is well managed and to facilitate improvement of the user-friendliness of the site. The DPSA or its service provider(s) may use cookies to collect aggregate data. The DPSA may use such devices from time to time to track information on its systems and identify categories of users by items such as IP address, domain, browser type and pages visited. This information is reported to the web administrator who uses the information to analyse the number of users to different areas of the site and to make sure that this site is serving as a useful, effective information source.

      Neither cookies nor web beacons collect personal information such as your name or e-mail address. You may reject cookies as most browsers permit individuals to decline cookies. Under certain circumstances users may be denied access to some parts of this web site if their browsers are set to decline cookies.

    3. Personal Information Use

      Personal information is used only for limited purposes e.g. when you register with the web site to request future communications about the DPSA’s areas of interest, such as specific DPSA publications or events. The DPSA may use the information you submit to create a personal profile to customize our response to further requests or inquiries and to improve the web site. When you choose to register online for a DPSA-hosted event, the DPSA will use the information you submit to respond to you. In addition, the web administrator(s) may, where necessary, use your information for various site related tasks. The DPSA will ensure that any marketing activities comply with applicable law and that it is implemented with procedures to obtain the necessary consent before sending you e-mail containing information about the DPSA’s services. You may at any time request that we discontinue sending you such materials.

    4. Disclosure to Third Parties

      Although the DPSA may provide users’ information to service providers that handle information on our behalf, it will usually not share the information with third parties or other public entities for secondary or unrelated purposes unless otherwise disclosed at the point of collection.

      Personal information may be transmitted internationally through the DPSA or to third parties for the purposes identified above. This will not include transfer to countries without data protection rules similar to those in effect in your country of residence. By providing information to the DPSA through this web site, you are consenting to such transfers.

      Where appropriate, personal information may be disclosed to law enforcement, regulatory or other government agencies, or third parties where necessary or desirable to comply with legal or regulatory obligations or requests or for the purposes identified above.

    5. Access to Personal Information

      If personal information has been submitted to this web site, users who wish to review their personal information may do so by requesting such a review through the contact-us link. Users will then be able to access their user profile, correct and update their details, or unsubscribe at any time. Users who have any problem accessing their profiles, or would like to request a copy of their personal information should contact the web administrator using the contact-us link. In all cases we will treat requests to access information or change information in accordance with applicable legal requirements.

    6. Changes to Privacy Policy

      The DPSA reserves the right to modify or amend this privacy statement at any time and for any reason. Nothing contained herein creates or is intended to create a contract or agreement between the DPSA and any user visiting the web site or providing identifying information of any kind.

    7. Children's Privacy Protection

      The DPSA recognises the importance of protecting children's privacy in the interactive online world.

  6. Severability

    These terms and conditions of use constitute the entire professional relationship between the DPSA and you, the user of this web site. Any failure by the DPSA to exercise or enforce any right or provision of these terms and conditions of use shall in no way constitute a waiver of such right or provision. In the event that any term or condition of the use of this web site is not fully enforceable or valid for any reason, such term(s) or condition(s) shall be severable from the remaining terms and conditions. The remaining terms and conditions shall not be affected by such unenforceability or invalidity and shall remain enforceable and applicable.

  7. Updating of these Terms and Conditions

    The DPSA reserves the right to change, modify, add to or remove from portions or the whole of these terms and conditions of use from time to time. Changes to these terms and conditions of use will take effect upon such changes being posted to this Website. It is the User’s obligation to periodically check these terms and conditions of use at this Website for changes or updates. The User’s continued use of this Website following the posting of changes or updates will be considered notice of the User’s acceptance to abide by and be bound by these terms and conditions of use, including such changes or updates.

  8. Information about web site and owner
    1. The full name and legal status of the web site owner is

      The Department of Public Service and Administration, a National Government Department of the Republic of South Africa, as represented by the Director-General of the Department.

    2. The web site address of this web site is:
    3. Contact details of web site owner

      Postal address
      Open Government Partnership South Africa
      Department of Public Service and Administration
      Private Bag X X916
      South Africa

      Street Address
      Batho Pele House
      116 Proes Street
      South Africa

      Tel No
      +27 12 336 1357

      webmaster at