Effective Date: January, 2009
This policy answers the following questions:
What information do we collect about you and how do we use it?
Will we share your personal information with third parties?
What choices do you have about the collection and use of your personal information?
What security measures do we take to safeguard your personal information?
If you have any questions or concerns about our policy or its implementation, you may contact us at this email address:firstname.lastname@example.org
Information collection and use: We collect personal and non-personal information to grant you access to, and improve, our services, and contact you.
Most of our site can be enjoyed as a visitor, but you need to register in order to take advantage of certain free services on the site, like our community forums, message boards and blogs.
Information you provide: We collect personal information when you voluntarily provide it to us.
Registration: When you register for the site, we collect personal information from you such as your first and last name, email address, password, and optionally, your address, phone numbers, work information, location and occupation. Registering allows you to post content in our forums, message boards, blogs and participate in online discussions.
We do not ask for additional information, including other personal or contact information, demographics, health interests, goals, medical history, and/or vital statistics. We won’t email you or send you requests for such information. You however are free to post your personal story in the website if you choose to do so.
Opinions and polls: We reserve the right to ask you to give your opinion when you visit our site. We use information from opinion polls to better understand the needs of our users and to gather information about health care trends and issues. Questions and answers are stored, but they are not linked to identifying information about you and will not be shared with third parties.
Special note for parents: This site is a general audience site and not designed or intended to attract children younger than 13. We do not collect personal information from any person we actually know is younger than 13.
Log information: When you visit our site, our servers will automatically collect log information. This information may include your Web page request, Internet Protocol (IP) address, browser type, browser language, the date and time of your request, and one or more cookies that may uniquely identify your browser. We collect log information so that we can properly administer our system and gather aggregate information about how our site is being used, including the pages visitors are viewing.
Cookies: We may collect anonymous information about your use of our site through cookies. The cookie does not tell us who you are. Only you can tell us that.
Your browser software can be set to reject all cookies or to accept cookies only from our site. Most browsers offer instructions on how to reset the browser to reject cookies in the “Help” section of the toolbar. If you reject our cookies, you may not be able to log in or use certain functions and conveniences of our site.
Web beacons: We also use Web beacons, sometimes called single-pixel GIFs, that momentarily direct your browser to a server other than FR in a way that may not be apparent to you. Web beacons are used to count users who visited specific pages and determine which emails were opened and/or acted upon when we send HTML-formatted email messages. We do not link any identifying information to Web beacons. To avoid Web beacons in some emails, go to your Account, click on “Manage alerts” and select “text-only” alerts.
Information disclosure to third parties: We know how important it is to keep the information you’ve entrusted to us confidential. We will not rent, sell or share personal information about you with third parties. In case the need arises, we will ask for your permission before we disclose your personal information.
Disclosure for legal reasons: We may release personal information to third parties: (1) to comply with valid legal requirements such as a law, regulation, search warrant, subpoena or court order; or (2) in special cases, such as a physical threat to you or others, a threat to homeland security, a threat to our system or network, or cases in which we believe it is reasonably necessary to investigate or prevent harm, fraud, abuse, or illegal conduct. In the event that we are legally compelled to disclose your personal information to a third party, we will make reasonable efforts to notify you unless doing so would violate the law or court order.
Agents and contractors: Contractors sometimes have access to your personal information in the course of assisting in operating our business and providing products or services to you. These contractors include vendors and suppliers that provide us with technology, services, and/or content for the operation and maintenance of our site. Contractors have an obligation under their contracts with us to keep your information confidential and to comply with our privacy and security policies.
Aggregated, non-personal information: We may share aggregated information about you with third parties. This is information that is combined with the non-personal information of other users and does not allow you to be identified or contacted. Depending on the circumstances, we may or may not charge third parties for this aggregated information. We also may not limit the third parties’ use of the aggregated information.
Registration: You can change or update your account information, including your password, username, location, occupation, address, phone numbers, communications and privacy preferences at any time. We ask for your first and last name, however information like your address, phone number and/or any other identifiable information from you is optional. You can unregister at any time. We will send you a confirmation email. Once you unregister, you will not be able to sign into the site to post or access any information you may have saved or created on the site.
Communications: Email communications: Email communication that you send to us via the email links on our site may be shared with a Customer Care representative, employee, or even medical experts. If you provide personal health information in your email, it will be used only for the purposes of answering your email. From time to time, we may send you service-related emails, such as a welcome email when you register with our site.
Newsletters: At various places on the site, you will be given the option to receive recurring informational newsletters. You can unsubscribe from newsletters by clicking on the “unsubscribe” link at the bottom of any newsletter.
Community :Our site features Community areas where people with similar interests can share information and support one another, that includes forums, message boards and blogs.
Please remember that any information that you post in public areas such as forums and public group discussions is, by design, open to the public and may appear in search engine results. For forum postings you cannot make the postings private, but you can make these postings “Anonymous” so that your screen name (“username”) is not associated with your postings.
Most of your Community pages have two versions. The version that allows you to update the pages is viewable only by you and requires you to be logged into the site with your username and password. The other version is viewable to others based on the privacy and anonymity controls you select. The privacy and anonymity controls described below will help you decide what others can see about you.
Forum and Message Boards postings: By default, when you post to a forum or a group discussion, rate a doctor or treatment, review a hospital or comment on another user’s posting, your post will be associated with the screen name you’ve provided in your profile. You can choose to post anonymously on a post-by-post basis. If you generally want to be anonymous when you post, you can go to your Account and choose this level of privacy for your postings throughout the site.
Your story: After you register, you can create and send your personal story. By default, your personal story will be associated with your screen name (the nickname you created at registration).
Efforts we take to safeguard your personal information: We are committed to protecting the security of your information through procedures and technology designed for this purpose by taking these steps:
We limit access to your personal information to employees having a reasonable need to access this information to provide products and services to you. Employees who misuse information are subject to disciplinary action, including termination.
We have physical, technical and procedural safeguards to help protect your personal information.
In areas that contain your personal information, we use secure socket layer (SSL) encryption to help protect this information while it is in transit between our servers and your computer.
What you can do to help keep your information secure: Choose your passwords carefully: Always create a password that’s easy for you to remember but difficult for someone else to figure out. Don’t use your name, address, phone number, initials, Social Security number, license plate or birthday. Don’t use names of your friends, family or pets, company names, common numerical sequences or the word “password.”
Suggestion: Use a mix of special characters, numbers, and upper- and lowercase letters. Also, remember to change your password frequently and never give your password to anyone.
Log out and close your browser: Open browsers invite snoops. When you finish your online session, close your browser to erase any information it may have temporarily stored on your computer.
Install antivirus software and spyware protection: Viruses are dangerous. Many viruses are sent as email attachments. They can slip into your system without your knowledge the moment you open the email. Some viruses such as Trojan Horses can capture the contents of your system, including your passwords. Installing up-to-date antivirus software and running it will help thwart these and other unwanted programs.
Spyware is a program or technology that aids in gathering information about a person or organization, often without their knowledge, and includes programs like hijackers and keyloggers. The best way to identify whether or not spyware is installed on your computer is to run and regularly update antispyware programs. Similar to antivirus software, antispyware software identifies and helps you remove spyware.
Changes to this Policy: We may update this Policy. We will notify you about material changes in the way we treat personal information by sending a notice to the email address specified in your account. We may also make nonmaterial changes to our Policy that generally will not affect our use of your personal information. If you don’t agree with the new policy, you always have the option of closing your account. Please see instructions for closing your account above. Our current policy, identified by its effective date, will be posted on the Site, and you should check it frequently.