Effective Date: 03/09/2011
Titles and headings are provided for general reference and ease of use only, as information may be covered in more than one heading or under other headings.
Collection of Personal Information
HCI is committed to protecting your privacy. Unless expressly provided, data collected is for the sole purpose of the operation of the Websites and providing the services offered through the Websites (collectively, the “Services”). We will share your personal information with third parties only in the ways that are described in this privacy statement. We do not sell, rent or share your personal information to third parties.
If you are registering as a homeowner we do not collect any financial information from you. With respect to the processing of transactions, such as a purchase of any premium membership when you register as contractor, we may collect financial information (such as your credit card number and expiration date, PayPal account particulars and the like), depending on the method of payment you choose. Such information is then forwarded to our payment gateway for processing. You will also be asked to provide information about your annual sales volumes (you may decline to provide this information without any limitation or restriction with respect to your registration). Other than as previously described, we do not retain any such personal information of a financial nature about you.
Websites and Services
Personal information may also be collected in conjunction with your access and use of the Websites and Services. For example, if you post content on the Websites in open forums such postings will be associated to your account and any personal information you provide in such posting will be accessible to other users of the Websites and may be read, collected, and used by others who access them. To request removal of your personal information from our blog or community forum, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. In some cases, we may not be able to remove your personal information, in which case we will let you know if we are unable to do so and why.
HCI may monitor your use of the Websites and Services and may create records of your use of the Websites and Services in order to verify your identity when posting a review. In these instances, we check for a valid email address and may contact the homeowner leaving the review to verify additional information which is to be posted.
By setting a persistent cookie, we allow you not to have to log in with a password more than once, thereby saving time while accessing the Websites. If you reject these cookies, you may still access and use the Websites but your experience and/or access may be limited in some areas of the Websites.
HCI may use third-party advertising companies to serve ads on its behalf and to monitor certain pages of the Websites for the purpose of reporting web traffic, statistics, advertisement “click-throughs”, and/or other activities on our site. These third party service providers may employ cookies and action tags (also known as single pixel gifs or web beacons) to measure advertising effectiveness. Action tags are tiny graphics with a unique identifier, similar in function to cookies, and are used to track the online movements of Web users. In contrast to cookies, which are stored on a user’s computer hard drive, clear gifs are embedded invisibly on Web pages and are about the size of the period at the end of this sentence. Any information that these third parties collect via cookies and action tags is completely anonymous.
As is the case with most other websites, personal information may also be collected by HCI with respect to your system and your specific access to and use of the Websites and Services. Such information includes internet protocol (IP) addresses, browser type, internet service provider (ISP), referring/exit pages, platform type, date/time stamps, number of clicks, cookies, clear gifs, user profiles and log files detailing access dates and times, webpages visited and features used. A profile is stored information that HCI keeps on individual users that detail such users’ viewing preferences, Website activities and interactions and exchanges with HCI. Like most standard Website servers we use log files.
Use of Personal Information
As indicated above, we will use personal information obtained for the purposes of operating the Websites and providing our Services when you register for an account. This includes us communicating with you with respect to your use of the Websites, your use of Services (including, for example, obtaining clarification or confirmation of Services requested and information submitted in conjunction with the obtaining of such Services), your account and responding to inquiries made by you.
The Websites also provide users access to an online directory of business members who register on the Websites, which directory will include the information you provide during the contractor registration process (with the exception of any payment information you provide with respect to the payment of any membership fees).
Likewise, the Websites offer matching services in terms of job requests and contractors and suppliers. As a contractor, to the extent you create a business profile, the Services will attempt to match such business profile to job requests and potential suppliers. As a homeowner, to the extent you post a job request, the Services will attempt to match such job request to contractors and suppliers. To the extent matches are found, your name, contact e-mail and other business information included in your business profile will be provided to the user creating the job request and, potentially, relevant suppliers. Moreover, we may send you offers through email or otherwise which we deem relevant to your trade or line of business. You may at any time opt out from receiving future offers by clicking on the opt-out hyperlink shown in such e-mail, at which time you will be removed from the relevant distribution list within a 10 day period.
If you sign up for our free membership program or sign up for our premium (paid) membership service, you will receive multiple communications from us with respect to and in conjunction with the operation of the Websites and the delivery of Services. Other ways we contact members of our service professional network are via fax, and/or cell text (SMS) messaging. Members of our service professional network (or prospective members enrolled in a Free Trial) can designate and opt-in on our Websites or by contacting customer service to receive leads in one or more of these formats.
Similarly, we may from time to time contact you via e-mail about Services or other features of the Websites or send you updates about the Websites and the Services, including, newsletters and bulletins. You may at any time opt out from receiving future communications by clicking on the opt-out hyperlink shown in such e-mail, at which time you will be removed from the relevant distribution list within a 10 day period.
Finally, collected information regarding access and usage of the Websites and Services is tied to the users’ personally identifiable information to improve the performance, security, content and features of the Websites and delivery of Services (including, your accessing and use of the Websites and Services), and to modify and/or expand Websites functionality and nature and scope of Services. Such information is also used to analyze trends, administer the Websites, track user’s movement in the aggregate, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use.
Users’ profile information is also used to tailor, ease, improve, facilitate and accelerate a user’s access and use of the Websites and Services (e.g. by remembering user preferences and applying these to subsequent visits).
On rare occasions, HCI may send out strictly service related e-mail announcements. These communications are not promotional in nature. For instance, if HCI’s service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an e-mail advising them of this. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account which will prevent future communications of such sort.
Modification of Personal Information
To the extent your personal information has changed or that our records are otherwise not accurate with respect to your personal information, please contact our privacy officer by e-mail at email@example.com. We will update your personal information in a timely manner. You may also update your personal or business information by accessing your account and making the appropriate changes in your account management center.
HCI may paraphrase, summarize, aggregate or compile Feedback, Ratings, Reviews, and Testimonials and may edit these to correct typos, spelling and grammatical errors as well as obvious mistakes in terms of objective facts.
To the extent permitted by applicable laws, HCI reserves the right to deny requests to remove any business profile, testimonials or Ratings and Reviews from the Websites, including members profile information associated with any such business profiles, testimonials or Ratings and Reviews.
We will retain your information for as long as your account is active or as needed to provide you services. If you wish to cancel or delete your account or request that we no longer use your information to provide you services you may contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will retain and use your information as necessary to comply with our legal obligations, resolve disputes, and enforce our agreements.
Request a Review
As a contractor, if you choose to use our request service to ask a customer to write a review of your business, we will ask you for your clients’ name and email address. We will automatically send your client a one-time email inviting him or her to write a review of your business. HCI stores this information for the sole purpose of sending this one-time email and tracking the success of our request a review program.
Your client may contact us at email@example.com to request that we remove this information from our database.
We post customer testimonials on our web site which may contain personally identifiable information. We do obtain the customer’s consent via email prior to posting the testimonial to post their name along with their testimonial. If you wish to request we remove your testimonial from the site(s) you may contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Disclosure of Personal Information
Use certain Services and features of the Websites will result in the disclosure of personal information. For example, if you choose to respond to a project listing or if you contact a supplier who has also been matched with a project listing, the user who posted the project listing and any such supplier (as the case may be) will receive your name and contact information. Likewise, as previously indicated, postings made by you on the Websites or through use of a Service will be accessible to other users of the Websites. To the extent such postings contain personal information, such personal information will therefore be communicated to users who access such posting.
HCI may create and share aggregated activity or statistical information with partners, advertisers or others, but such information shall not contain personally identifiable information.
Safeguarding of Personal Information
When you enter sensitive information (such as a credit card number) on our contractor premium registration forms, we encrypt the transmission of that information using secure socket layer technology (SSL).
The security of your personal information is important to us. We follow generally accepted industry standards to protect the personal information submitted to us, both during transmission and once we receive it. Though we strive to preserve user privacy, due to the inherent nature of the Internet, we cannot ensure that all of your private communications and other personal information will always remain confidential. You acknowledge and understand that the Internet is a public network and that communications on or through the Internet may be intercepted, misdirected, altered and/or deleted. Likewise, e-mails and accounts may be spoofed and individuals impersonated. Care should therefore be taken prior to disclosing personal information on or through the Websites or to any users or purported users of the Websites.
Likewise, we may disclose personal information when required by law (including by court order or in conjunction with legal proceedings), when we have a belief that such action is necessary or advisable to comply with applicable laws, or when we believe that a user is violating the law, is a threat to others or himself/herself or is in personal danger.
In the event HCI (or any of its business units) is bought, sold, restructured or merges with another entity, users’ personal information will, in most instances, be part of such transaction. HCI may disclose your personal information to such entities and their advisors, provide it first ensures that each of them sign a non-disclosure agreement safeguarding your personal information and preventing them from making any use of the information outside of such proposed transaction or restructuring and any subsequent operation of HCI’s business.
Our users are given the opportunity to ‘opt-out’ of having their information used for purposes not directly related to the operation of the Websites and delivery of Services they have requested. Such opt-out option is usually provided at the time of collection and/or in subsequent communications to the user. For example, our service request form has an ‘opt-out’ mechanism allowing users who submit a service request to elect not to receive any marketing material.
If you no longer wish to receive our newsletter and promotional communications, you may opt-out of receiving these communications by selecting the opt-out hyperlink in the relevant email or by emailing us at privacy@HandyAmerican.com.
You will be notified when personal information collected through use of the Websites is to be communicated to a third party (excluding our affiliates, service providers, or agents). We do this so our users can make an informed choice as to whether or not they should proceed with services that require an outside party.
Links and Integrated Partnerships
Changes in this Privacy Statement
We may update this privacy statement to reflect changes to our information practices. If we make any material changes we will notify you by email (sent to the e-mail address specified in your account) or by means of a notice on this Site prior to the change becoming effective. We encourage you to periodically review this page for the latest information on our privacy practices.
Location of Computer Facilities
Your personal information may be stored outside of the Province of Ontario to the extent we use service providers located outside of Ontario. You acknowledge and understand that the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (Canada) may apply and otherwise affect the collection, use, disclosure, retention and destruction of your personal information. Additional privacy legislation may also apply depending on the location of our service providers, our computer facilities or those of our service providers.