Privacy Notice for Visitors to Our Users’ Sites
Hi there! This Privacy Notice explains how we, at Automattic, process information about the visitors of our users’ websites in connection with the services we provide through WordPress.com, Jetpack (including WooCommerce Shipping & Tax), IntenseDebate, Crowdsignal.com, and Akismet. Read on!
Who’s Who and What This Privacy Notice Covers
Let’s talk first about who we are at Automattic, what we do, and what this Privacy Notice covers.
We are the folks behind a variety of products and services designed to allow anyone–from bloggers, to small business owners, and enterprises–to create, publish, and manage their own websites:
To keep things simple, in this Privacy Notice we’ll refer to the users of the services we provide through these products and services–such as a website’s administrator, contributor, author, or editor–as our “Users,” and we’ll refer to our Users’ websites as “Sites.” Visitors to those Sites can read published content and interact with the Sites through features such as comments, “likes,” poll/survey responses, and follows.
We put together this Privacy Notice to help our Users understand the information we collect about their Site visitors (a/k/a our Users’ users), and how that happens on their Sites. Our Users are responsible for publishing a privacy policy on their Sites that explains to their visitors how data is collected via the Sites and how that information is used and disclosed.
This Privacy Notice does not apply to the information we collect about Users and those who visit Automattic’s websites (like automattic.com, wordpress.com, jetpack.com, or akismet.com)–that’s covered in our Privacy Policy.
Alright, with those introductions out of the way, let’s turn to how we collect, use, and share information about visitors to our Users’ Sites.
Information We Collect About Visitors to Our Users’ Sites
We collect information about visitors to our Users’ Sites in a few different ways–we collect certain information that the visitors provide to the Site, we collect some information automatically, and we collect any information that our Users provide to us about their visitors.
Information a Visitor Provides to a Site
We’ll start with information that visitors provide directly to a Site, which primarily happens when visitors type into a text field on a Site, like a comment field or a sign-up form. Our Users may also implement other ways to allow Site visitors to provide information directly through their Sites.
Here are the most common ways in which a visitor directly provides information to a Site:
Information We Automatically Collect from the Site
We also automatically collect some information about visitors to a Site. The information we automatically collect depends on which of our services the Site uses. We’ve listed examples below:
Other Information Provided by Our Users
We also collect any other information that our Users provide to us about visitors to their Sites. For example, a User may upload a directory or other information about Site visitors and customers to the “backend” administrative platform for managing the Site.
How We Use Visitor Information
We use information about Site visitors in order to provide our Services to our Users and their Sites. Our users may use our Services to, for example, create and manage their Site, sell products and services on their Site, flag and fight comments from spammers, and collect information through polls, quizzes and other surveys.
In addition to the above, we use some information about Site visitors who are also our Users as described in our Privacy Policy.
We may also use and share information that has been aggregated or reasonably de-identified, so that the information could not reasonably be used to identify any individual. For instance, we may publish aggregate statistics about the use of our services.
How We Share Visitor Information
We may share information collected about Site visitors in the limited circumstances spelled out below:
How Long We Keep Visitor Information
If we are not legally required to keep it, we generally discard information about Site visitors when no longer needed for the purposes for which we collect and use it on behalf of our users — those purposes which are described in the “How We Use Visitor Information” section above.
For example, we keep the web server logs that record information about a visitor to one of our user’s Sites — such as the visitor’s IP address, browser type, and operating system — for approximately 30 days. We retain the logs for this period of time in order to, among other things, investigate issues if something goes wrong on a user’s Site.
As another example, when a Site visitor views your Site we use their IP address in order to update your Site Stats with information about their visit, like what country they are in. We keep that IP address for approximately 30 days to give us time to calculate your monthly Site Stats and address any issues with those counts.
Other Tools
Our Users’ Sites may contain ads from third party ad networks and advertisers, and our Users may integrate other tools and services on their Sites (such as Google Analytics and third party plugins). Please note that this Privacy Notice only covers the collection of information by Automattic, and does not cover the collection by any third party.
Ad networks and analytics providers may set tracking technologies (like cookies) to collect information about visitors’ use of a Site and across other websites and online services, such as a visitor’s IP address, web browser, mobile network information, pages viewed, time spent on pages, links clicked, and conversion information. This information may be used by those companies to, among other things, analyze and track usage, determine the popularity of certain content, and deliver advertisements that may be more targeted to visitor interests. For more information about how to manage and delete cookies, visit aboutcookies.org, and for more information on interest-based ads, including information about how visitors may be able to opt out of having their web browsing information used for behavioral advertising purposes, please visit aboutads.info/choices (US based) and youronlinechoices.eu (EU based).
Other Resources
You can read more about how our products and services operate on the links at the top of this notice.
And we’d love it if you follow us on privacy.blog for more information about privacy and transparency at Automattic.
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