Our Commitment to Privacy
We take your privacy seriously. Because we gather certain types of information about our users, we want to help you understand the terms and conditions surrounding the collection and use of that information. This privacy statement discloses the types of information we gather, how we use it, and how to correct or change it. These privacy practices apply to the Web site that you were viewing when you clicked through to this policy, which is operated directly by us, by our partner, or by our affiliate.
This Web site has been established as a resource for users to educate themselves about real estate investing, search for real estate investment properties across the United States, utilize tools to score, rate and/or rank properties, register to utilize additional tools and to receive email notifications and/or newsletters, and submit information to be distributed to third-party realtors across the country.
What Information Do We Collect?
You can browse our site without telling us who you are or revealing any personal information about yourself.
Our primary goal in collecting personal information is to provide you with the best and most useful content and services. Several of the services and features that we offer on our sites require you to provide us with information as a condition of usage. These include access to registered or member-only areas, the ability to post opinions or other content, participation in contests, receive email alerts and participation in message boards. If you choose to provide us with personal information, you consent to the transfer and storage of that information on our servers located in the United States. We may collect and store the following personal information:
- Personally identifiable information, such as your name, email address, postal address, phone number, mobile number and credit card information when you provide it to us;
- Sensitive information, such as your job title, gender, username and password;
- Transactional information based on your activities on the site (such as searching, sorting, purchasing, item and content you generate or that relates to your account);
- Shipping, billing and other information you provide to purchase or ship an item;
- Community discussions, chats, dispute resolution, correspondence through our sites, and correspondence sent to us;
- Other information from your interaction with our sites, services, content and advertising, including computer and connection information, statistics on page views, traffic to and from the sites, ad data, IP address and standard web log information;
- Information from other companies, such as demographic and navigation data; and
- Feedback and any information that you submit to us, such as a resume or additional profile information if you chose to participate in one of our surveys.
We may also receive information about you from other sources and add it to the information you provided to us. Once you give us your personal information, you are not anonymous to us.
How Do We Handle Cookies?
Your Internet browser has a feature called cookies, which stores small amounts of data on your computer about your visit to any of our sites. You do not need to have cookies turned on to visit most of our sites, although active participation in certain areas of our sites may require cookies. Cookies alone tell us nothing about who you are unless you specifically give us personally identifiable information, in which case we use the information to enhance your services in the ways described below. By adjusting your settings on your browser, you may elect not to allow cookies to be collected.
We also use technologies, including electronic images known as Web bugs-sometimes called transparent GIFs, clear GIFs, or beacons-that allow us to track general user-traffic patterns. We also automatically receive and record information from our servers and from your browser, including your IP address, the time of your visit to pages on our site, and information about pages you visited. Unless you have registered for one of our products or services, the information we gather through the use of tracking technologies cannot be matched with any personally identifiable information about you.
- Keeping count of return visits to our site or our advertisers’ or partners’ sites;
- Accumulating and reporting anonymous, aggregate (data collected in mass), statistical information on Web site and advertisement usage;
- Determining which features our overall user population likes best;
- Saving your password so you don’t have to re-enter it each time you visit our site; and
- Displaying the most appropriate advertising or content based on your interests.
We allow other companies that are presenting advertisements on our site and, sometimes, in our newsletters and email alerts to use tracking technology on your computer. We do not give any personally identifiable information to them as part of this relationship. Unless you visit the Web site of these companies and provide them with personally identifiable information about yourself, these tracking technologies do not provide those advertisers with personally identifiable information. Our advertisers’ use of tracking technology is subject to their own privacy policies.
How Do We Use the Information?
We use the information we gather for four general purposes:
- To customize the advertising and the content you see;
- To enhance the user experience in our network of sites. We use tracking information to determine how well each page performs overall based on aggregate user demographics and traffic patterns to those pages. This helps us continue to build a better service for you;
- To fulfill your requests for certain products and services, such as sending out electronic newsletters and enabling you to participate in paid services, polls, contests, and message boards;
- To send you information you agreed to receive about topics we think will be of interest to you; and
Disclosure of Personally Identifiable Information
We will make your personally identifiable information available to other companies or people when:
- You have elected to allow us to share that information at the time that you registered with us or provided us the information, or through a subsequent affirmative election through our Web site;
- You volunteer information or create a public profile in the course of your participation in our community features such as forums, user opinions and reviews, chat rooms, photo sharing or other forms of public communication and interaction;
- You use cobranded services (i.e., sites or services that we offer to you in connection with a partner, who is identified on the site) within our site and grant us permission to pass your registration information back to that service partner (their use of your information is subject to their applicable privacy policies);
- We hire third-party vendors to provide specialized services, such as customer support, email message deployment, suppression, merge and de-duplication services, data processing, and special products or services that you have requested (these companies are only allowed to use the information in order to help us fulfill our services to you and we do not provide your information to these companies for their own, permanent use);
- You unsubscribe for a mailing that we send to you on behalf of a third party; we may share your removal instruction with the third party so that it may be added to that person’s list of people to whom they may not send emails;
- You are the winner of a contest or a sweepstakes that is co-sponsored with a third party and that third party needs your information in order to manage the prize fulfillment process;
- When required by law, such as when we respond to subpoenas, court orders, or legal process;
- We believe that your actions violate applicable laws, SmartZip’s Terms of Service, or any usage guidelines for specific products or services, or threaten the rights, property, or safety of our company, our users, or others;
- Members of the SmartZip corporate family – to provide joint content and services (like registration, transactions and customer support), to help detect and prevent potentially illegal acts and violations of our policies, and to guide decisions about their products, services and communications; members of our corporate family will use this information to send you marketing communications only if you’ve requested their services; and
- We use return email addresses to answer the email we receive; such addresses are not used for any other purpose and are not shared with outside parties.
We aggregate personally identifiable information and disclose such information in a non-personally identifiable manner to advertisers and other third parties for marketing, promotional, and other purposes. We do not disclose to these entities any information that could be used to identify you personally.
We are always seeking to improve our network of Web sites and our business. In accomplishing these objectives, we may buy or sell a company, or one or more of the companies in our corporate family may merge with or be acquired by another company. If we sell a business, we may transfer some or all of your information as a part of the sale in order that the service being provided to you may continue or for other business purposes.
What Is Not Covered
What Are my Options?
Users who would rather not provide any of the user data requested by our registration process do not need to register with us. You can still view much of the content and use many of the services offered by our site without registering.
We also give users the following options:
- Opting not to receive our electronic newsletters or those of third parties when registering; users who opt in may remove themselves from mailing lists at any time through the subscription-management pages or by following the instructions at the end of the e-mail they received from us; and
- Opting not to provide certain personal information when registering for a site; provided, however, that you may not be able to use some of our products or services without providing us with certain information.
You can review, correct, or change the information collected during registration for any of our sites. The instructions for doing this can be found in our member-services areas. Users may change information at any time and as often as necessary. Users who are experiencing problems with our services or who have questions about how our services work can contact Customer Service.
How is My Information Protected?
Your password is the key to your account. Use unique numbers, letters and special characters, and do not disclose your SmartZip password to anyone. If you do share your password or your personal information with others, remember that you are responsible for all actions taken in the name of your account. If you lose control of your password, you may lose substantial control over your personal information and may be subject to legally binding actions taken on your behalf. Therefore, if your password has been compromised for any reason, you should immediately change your password.
To prevent unauthorized access, maintain data accuracy, and ensure the correct use of information, we have put in place appropriate physical, electronic, and managerial procedures to safeguard and secure the information we collect online.
A Note About Children
We do not intentionally gather personal information about users who are under the age of 13.
Any modifications to our privacy practices will be reflected first within this area of our Web site. If there is a material change in our privacy practices, we will indicate on our site that our privacy practices have changed and provide a link to the new privacy statement. If we are going to be using the information collected from users in a manner materially different from that stated at the time of collection, we will send affected users written notice of the change by e-mail. Any such material changes will be effective upon the earlier of thirty (30) calendar days following our dispatch of an e-mail notice to you or thirty (30) calendar days following our posting of notice of the changes on our site. These changes will be effective immediately for new users of our Web site, products or related services. Please note that at all times you are responsible for updating your personal information to provide us with your most current e-mail address. In the event that the last e-mail address that you have provided us is not valid, or for any reason is not capable of delivering to you the notice described above, our dispatch of the e-mail containing such notice will nonetheless constitute effective notice of the changes described in the notice. If you do not wish to permit changes in our use of your personal information, you must notify us prior to the effective date of the changes that you wish to deactivate your account with us. Continued use of our Web site, products, or related services, following notice of such changes shall indicate your acknowledgement of such changes and agreement to be bound by the terms and conditions of such changes.
Questions & Comments
Questions regarding this privacy statement or any other aspects of our web site should be sent to our corporate offices at 6210 Stoneridge Mall Road, Suite 100, Pleasanton, CA 94588, Attention: Legal Department. We read every message submitted and try to reply promptly. We may also file your comments to improve the site, or review and discard the information.
Effective date: October 15, 2008