Last Updated on August 26, 2012
At Home Stars Directory Inc. ("HomeStars"), we are committed to protecting your privacy, and maintain a general policy of openness about how we collect, use and disclose your personal information. HomeStars is an Ontario corporation.
WHAT PERSONAL INFORMATION WE COLLECT
- Public Content: In general we collect, use and disclose personal information for use on the Site. From time to time, we may ask you to provide us with more detailed information and we will inform you as to why we are collecting it. It will be entirely up to you as to whether you choose to share this information with us. Your account profile and anything you post on the Site are meant for public consumption. This content may be displayed on the Site or be distributed to a wider audience through third party websites or other services.
- Location & Activity: The personal information HomeStars may collect about you includes: your contact information, including an online name & neighbourhood of residence, zip & postal code, the date and time of your visit, your IP address, content viewed, the name of companies recorded in your account, e-mail address and demographic information.
- Advertising: If you purchase business advertising through our website, your billing information may be stored. This sensitive information is encrypted according to industry standards and is only shared with third parties who will assist HomeStars in completing the purchase transaction.
- Messaging: We may also retain any communications you send us and other users, including e-mail messages, forum posts, reviews and responses we send you.
A SPECIAL NOTE ABOUT CHILDREN
Children (persons under the age of 18) are not eligible to use the Site unsupervised and we ask that children do not submit any personal information to us. If you are under the age of 18, you may only use this Site in conjunction with and under the supervision of your parents or guardians.
We believe that HomeStars' content does not appeal directly to children of 13 years old or less. We do not knowingly direct our advertising at children under the age of 13, except as permitted by law.
HOW WE USE YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
We use your personal information for the purposes of operating and providing the products and services of HomeStars on or in connection with the Site. More specifically, we generally collect, use and disclose your personal information:
- To verify the validity of your e-mail address and identity;
- To communicate with you regarding information you submit to the Site;
- To research, develop, manage, protect and improve those communications;
- To respond to questions and suggestions you submit to the Site;
- To verify any reviews submitted to the Site;
- To advise you about new products and services that may be of interest to you; and
- To develop and maintain our relationship with you and communicate with you.
- In addition, from time to time, we may use your personal information for the following purposes:
- To detect and protect HomeStars and third parties against error, fraud, theft and other illegal activity, and to audit compliance with HomeStars' policies and contractual obligations;
- To understand your needs and preferences, including to contact and communicate with you and to conduct surveys, research and evaluations; and
- For any other purpose we may indicate to you from time to time.
THE CIRCUMSTANCES IN WHICH WE DISCLOSE YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
- Except with your consent and as set out below, we will not sell, license, trade or rent your personal information to or with others.
- Investigations: HomeStars reserves the right to disclose personal information to a third party if a law, regulation, search warrant, subpoena or court order legally requires or authorizes us to do so.
- Business Transfers: HomeStars also reserves the right to disclose and/or transfer personal information to a third party in the event of a proposed or actual purchase, sale (including a liquidation, realization, foreclosure or repossession), lease, merger, amalgamation or any other type of acquisition, disposal, transfer, conveyance or financing of all or any portion of HomeStars or of any of the business or assets or shares of HomeStars or a division thereof in order for you to continue to receive the same products and services from the third party.
- Aggregate: Aggregate information is collected by HomeStars. This information may be shared with third parties, such as advertisers. Often this information is collected and used for statistical purposes to determine the current areas of interests of users.
- Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin: The Site allows you to connect your account to and post links on social media accounts such as Facebook, Twitter or Linkedin. HomeStars will use the information from the Site so that you can share public content with your friends and/or followers, should you opt-in only.
KNOWLEDGE AND CONSENT
Use of the HomeStars website is voluntary. Typically, we will seek consent for the use or disclosure of your personal information at the time of collection. In certain circumstances, consent may be sought after the information has been collected but before use (for example, when we want to use information for a purpose not previously identified). The form of consent that we seek, including whether it is express or implied, will largely depend on the sensitivity of the personal information and the reasonable expectations of the individual in the circumstances.
You may withdraw consent at any time, subject to legal or contractual restrictions and reasonable notice. If you refuse or withdraw your consent, we may not be able to provide you or continue to provide you with certain services or information that may be of value to you.
We will not, as a condition of the supply of a product or service, require you to consent to the collection, use or disclosure of information beyond that required to fulfill the explicitly specified and legitimate purposes for which the information is being provided.
USE OR DISCLOSURE FOR MARKETING, ADVERTISING AND SPONSORSHIP PURPOSES
We may also use, but will not disclose, your personal information to promote and market additional goods, services and special offers from us, our affiliates and sponsors, including by means of direct marketing. To ensure advertisers understand who our subscribers are and what they are interested in, we will compile your information and create general profiles of our subscribers' demographic information and interests. However, we will never share any PERSONALLY IDENTIFIABLE information with our advertisers.
WE PROTECT YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
HomeStars makes all commercially reasonable efforts to ensure that personal information collected from you is protected against loss and unauthorized access. This protection applies in relation to information stored in both electronic and hard-copy form. Access to your personal information is restricted to select employees or representatives. In addition, HomeStars employs appropriate information security techniques to protect personal information against loss and unauthorized access.
HomeStars educates all its employees on the importance of privacy. It is HomeStars’ policy to give access to personal information only to those employees who require it to carry out the responsibilities of their jobs or to other such third parties with similar designated responsibilities and who are subject to contractual confidentiality restrictions with HomeStars.
LINKS TO THIRD-PARTY SITES
RETENTION OF YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
The information that we obtain from you may be stored in the United States of America. HomeStars retains your personal information, even after your account has been terminated, for as long as necessary to fulfill the purpose(s) for which it was collected and to comply with applicable laws. When that need has ended, your personal information will be removed from our system and destroyed in a manner that ensures your security.
CONTROL OF YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
At HomeStars, we want you to be able to maintain control over how we use your personal information. You will always have the option to instruct us not to use your name, online name, neighbourhood of residence, e-mail address, postal code, etc., beyond providing you with the service or information you requested. Additionally, e-mail communications will always include an identification of the sender and an "Unsubscribe" option. Should you wish to unsubscribe at any time, you may instruct us to immediately do so by clicking on the link.
ACCESS TO, CORRECTING OR UPDATING YOUR INFORMATION
If you request access to your personal information, subject to certain exceptions, HomeStars will inform you of the existence, use and disclosure of your personal information and will provide you with a summary of that information. If HomeStars determines not to provide you with access to your personal information, an explanation will be provided.
You can help us maintain the accuracy of your personal information by notifying us of any changes to this information.
HomeStars Directory Inc.
Attn: Privacy Officer
49 Spadina Ave., Suite 206
Toronto, ON, M5V 2J1
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