Failing to protect your site visitor’s data, or clearly articulate how you intend to do so, can cause a host of issues, including fines, penalties, bans, and a lack of customer trust. No doubt these are all things you want to avoid.
In simple terms, it is a legal document that lets your customers know what type of data you’re collecting, how you are collecting that data, and then, what you intend to do with that information. If you plan to share the data with other companies, you need to let your customers know. Additionally, include how you plan to store user data and the actions you have taken to keep it safe.
- Your name (or business name), location and contact info.
- What information you’re collecting when someone visits your website (e.g., their name, email address, their location, or IP address).
- How you are collecting the visitor’s information and how you will use the data in the future.
- Storage details such as where data will be stored and how you plan to keep it safe.
- Consider including whether or not they can opt-out from having their information being collected, and if so, the consequences of doing so.
The article, “Nobody reads privacy policies – here’s how to fix that,” provides some additional great tips for writing policies that people actually want to read.
- Break up your policy into smaller sections and deliver them at times that are appropriate for users. For example, when a visitor signs up for email updates, share a short privacy notice at that time about how the information they are about to share with you will be used and stored.
- Focus on the consumer by writing policies that are relevant to the user’s activity, understandable and actionable.
- Lastly, write like a human, for humans. You don’t need to go on and on with big terms and fancy language. Plainly state how you intend to collect and use the data and leave it at that.
Disclaimer: This information is offered as background information and does not constitute legal advice. You should not rely on the information in this article as an alternative to legal advice from your attorney or other professional legal services provider.