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Privacy Policy

Commitment to your Privacy

This site is owned and operated by the Tiers of Trust (ToT) consortium. Your privacy on the Internet is of the utmost importance to us. At ToT, we want to make your experience with the ToT satisfying and safe. Because we gather certain types of information about our users, we feel you should fully understand the terms and conditions surrounding the capture and use of that information. This privacy statement discloses what information we gather and how we use it.

Information ToT Gathers and Tracks

ToT gathers two types of information about users:

The first is information that users provide through optional, voluntary submissions. These are opt-in submissions to receive membership benefits and privileges, newsletters or request email information and requests to participate in contests, polls and surveys.

Page visit information is gathered and tracked in the aggregate, and is derived mainly by tallying page views throughout our site. This information allows us to better tailor our content to readers' needs and to help us better understand the demographics of our audience. Under no circumstances does ToT divulge any information about an individual user to a third party. We only collect information such as web browser, time of access, resource accessed, operating system, and other connection related and platform related data.

ToT Gathers User Information In The Following Processes:

Optional Voluntary Information

We offer the following free services, which require some type of voluntary submission of personal information by users:

1. Newsletters or Requests for E-mail Information
We will offer a free electronic newsletter to users and reply to visitors who request information. ToT gathers the email addresses of users who voluntarily subscribe to a newsletter or request information. Users may remove themselves from this mailing list by following the link provided in every newsletter that points users to the subscription management page or reply to any email asking to be unsubscribed.

2. Surveys and Polls
ToT may occasionally conduct user surveys to better target our content to our audience. We never share any of this information about specific individuals with any third party.

3. Contest Submissions
ToT may occasionally sponsor contests and promotions. We never share any of this information about specific individuals or specific companies with any third party without express written permission.

Children / COPPA Compliance

Consistent with the Federal Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 (COPPA), we will never knowingly request personally identifiable information from anyone under the age of 13 without requesting parental consent. If you become aware of any such information being gathered in violation of this policy, we urge you to report it immediately via our contact information.

Usage tracking

ToT tracks user traffic patterns throughout all of our sites. However, we do not correlate this information with data about individual users. ToT does break down overall usage statistics according to a user's domain name, browser type, and MIME type by reading this information from the browser string (information contained in every user's browser).

ToT sometimes tracks and catalogs the search terms that users enter in our Search function, but this tracking is never associated with individual users. We use tracking information to determine which areas of our sites users like and don't like based on traffic to those areas. We do not track what individual users read, but rather how well each page performs overall. This helps us continue to build a better service for visitors to our website.

Cookies

We may place a text file called a "cookie" in the browser files of your computer. The cookie itself does not contain Personal Information although it will enable us to relate your use of this site to information that you have specifically and knowingly provided. But the only personal information a cookie can contain is information you supply yourself. A cookie can't read data off your hard disk or read cookie files created by other sites. ToT uses cookies to track aggregate user traffic patterns (as described above).

You can refuse cookies by turning them off in your browser. If you've set your browser to warn you before accepting cookies, you will receive the warning message with each cookie. You do not need to have cookies turned on to use this site.

Use of Information

ToT uses any information voluntarily given by our users to enhance their experience in our network of sites, whether to provide interactive or personalized elements on the sites or to better prepare future content based on the interests of our users.

When we use tracking information to determine which areas of our sites users like and don't like based on traffic to those areas. We do not track what individual users read, but rather how well each page performs overall. This helps us continue to build a better service for you. We track search terms entered in Search function as one of many measures of what interests our users. But we don't track which terms a particular user enters.

Sharing of Information

ToT uses the above-described information to tailor our content to suit your needs and help us better understand our audience's demographics. We will not share information about individual users with any third party, except to comply with applicable law or valid legal process or to protect the personal safety of our users or the public.

Opt-Out Policy

We give users options wherever necessary and practical. Such choices include opting not to participate in certain areas, which completely alleviates the need to gather any personally identifiable information from our users.

Your Consent

By using this site, you consent to the collection and use of this information by ToT. If we change our privacy policy, we will post those changes in our announcements on the homepage and on this page so that you are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances we disclose it. We reserve the right to make changes to this document at any time; any such changes will supercede any previous clauses applicable in this document.



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