Although, please remember that while the information herein is useful, this article can’t be considered or recommended as legal advice. It’s better to consult a specialist in privacy laws within your country.
Defining Privacy Policies
Personal or private data can include personally identifiable information such as names, birthdays, physical addresses, emails, telephone or cellphone numbers, social security numbers, and IP addresses, as well as financial information including credit or debit card details or PayPal accounts.
Privacy and data protection laws vary by country and region, but they all have something in common which is how to protect data.
Private policies need to meet major laws and standards present in the United States and Europe such as General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), ePrivacy, and Cookie Law.
That’s why regulations were put in place to make sure that users have easy access to the privacy policies of businesses.
What are the Common Privacy Laws on the Internet?
In the United States and Europe, there are legislation and legal guidelines that will affect your website depending on the information gathered, how it is done, and how it is processed. The European Union offers more stringent and consumer-friendly laws and regulations applicable to them. Meanwhile, the US has several laws that cover specific regions and demographics but no specific and all-encompassing data protection law compared to the EU.
Applicable to the European Economic Area (EEA) is the aforementioned GDPR. In the US, the more notable ones are California’s Online Privacy Protection Act (CalOPPA), Children’s Online Privacy Act (COPPA), and California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA).
Though similar to CalOPPA, this legislation focuses on regulating websites that are aimed at children under the age of 13. It can also be applied to websites that knowingly collect information from users under the age of 13, such as certain social media sites.
Other Applicable Laws
Recently, a new regulation was also enacted called the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA).
In Europe, GDPR is enforced on businesses that collect personal information and data from European residents. With this regulation, businesses must protect the personal data and privacy of citizens in the European Union (EU). Non-compliance with the law can incur heavy punishment to the violators.
Since it was passed, GDPR became law across the EEA, which standardized the information you collect and its use in the entire region.
Furthermore, any organization whose website is available in Europe that are collecting personal info are required to comply with GDPR, even if the company may not be located within the EU.
GDPR and Canada’s Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) also require that consumers should be aware of how their personal data is used when they provide consent for data processing.
Doing this ensures and fosters a safe and trustworthy electronic environment on the internet, as well as guarantees your business’s conformity with certain laws and regulations on privacy. A transparent environment enables consumers and people to feel more confident in your business.
Many people value their privacy and respecting their wishes lets you build stronger relationships with them. Abuse of their personal information regarding the data you collect can give stress and bad publicity to your firm or agency. This may lead to loss of business and mistrust of your services and products due to shady business practices.
Basic Navigational Links
About Us Section
Similar to contact forms, signup forms ask for the personal information of a user or visitor. However, this kind of form implies the start of a business relationship. They give you permission to communicate with them, provide products and services, and even market and advertise your solutions and business.
Customers need to know how their personal information will be collected, used, stored, and protected by a third party before completing their order and sending their personal data to you.
If you plan to use the personal information collected for targeted marketing or personalized advertising, it’s imperative to include a consent checkbox in the checkout form as well.
If you’re an online business or utilize third-party services, such as analytics or advertising, or provide these third-party services yourself, you need to disclose your policy clearly and conspicuously.
Privacy policies are required for any site that gathers data from users, such as location, name, addresses as covered by privacy protection acts of several countries and territories.
As stated before, all online services, sites, and apps need to include a policy before users can use their service. But the following are some more uncommon ones that need one as well.
Blogs and other informational websites can generate income through advertising placed on their site by third parties. Services like Google Adsense and Amazon Affiliates are the common third parties that can provide these.
Since advertising involves collecting and processing data in order to provide personalized and targeted ads, privacy policies are a must in using them for your site.
Like Google Adsense or other advertising services, this also gathers and processes information from visitors and users on your site or app. As such it is also covered by data-protection laws.
How to Write a Privacy Statement for my Company Website
Define Website Cookies and Cookie-Specific Policies
You must also explain what cookies are to your customers and what it does. What kind of information will be collected and what will be done to them. There should also be instructions on how to delete or reject cookies. Finally, you must reassure them that they can keep their data privacy despite the information you collect from cookies.
Explain Why You Have to Collect Personal Information
Establish trust in your users and visitors. Tell them how it is beneficial for them to have their website cookies tracked, their personal data collected, and their agreement to terms and conditions for a third party. You can explain that it improves their customer and user experience, including the content they receive.
Give Them An Option to Opt Out of Having Their Personal Data Collected
Assure Users that the Info You Collect are Secured and You Won’t Harm Their Privacy
Although you’ll give them an option not to provide their consent, you should also use this part as an opportunity to explain that processing their info and collecting their personal information is not harmful to them. You will respect their confidentiality and keep their info secure. Website cookies are not harmful to their device and as the website owner, you will not introduce viruses or worms that compromise or harm their right to privacy.
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