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Last updated: May 30, 2022
The privacy of your data — and it is your data, not ours! — is a big deal to us. In this policy, we lay out: what data we collect and why; how your data is handled; and your rights to your data. We promise we never sell your data: never have, never will.
What we collect and why
Our guiding principle is to collect only what we need. Here’s what that means in practice:
Identity & access
When you sign up for a SearchApi product, we typically ask for identifying information such as your name, email address, and maybe a company name. That’s just so you can personalize your new account, and we can send you invoices, updates, or other essential information. We sometimes also give you the option to add a profile picture that displays in our products, but we do not normally look at or access that picture. We’ll never sell your personal info to third parties.
When you pay for a SearchApi product, we ask for your credit card and billing address. That’s so we can charge you for service, calculate taxes due, and send you invoices. Your credit card is passed directly to our payment processor and doesn’t ever go through our servers. We store a record of the payment transaction, including the last 4 digits of the credit card number and as-of billing address, for account history, invoicing, and billing support. We store your billing address to calculate any sales tax due in the United States or VAT in the EU, to detect fraudulent credit card transactions, and to print on your invoices.
We log all access to all accounts by full IP address so that we can always verify no unauthorized access has happened. We keep this login data for as long as your product account is active.
When you browse our website, your browser automatically shares certain information such as which operating system and browser version you are using. We track that information, along with the pages you are visiting, page load timing, and which website referred you for statistical purposes like conversion rates and to test new designs. We sometimes track specific link clicks to help inform some design decisions. These web analytics data are tied to your IP address and user account if applicable and you are signed into our Services. We blind all of these individual identifiers after 30 days. Other web analytics we utilize are described further in the Cookies and Do Not Track section.
We use CAPTCHA services across our application to mitigate brute force logins and prevent spam such as creating automatic accounts or extensive use of requests. We have a legitimate interest in protecting our apps and the broader Internet community from credential stuffing attacks and spam. When you log into your accounts and fill specific forms, the CAPTCHA service evaluates various information (e.g IP address, how long the visitor has been on the app, mouse movements) to check whether the data is possibly filled out by an automated program instead of a human. We retain these data via our subprocessor forever because they are used for anti-spam mitigation.
Cookies and Do Not Track
We do use persistent first-party cookies to store certain preferences, make it easier for you to use our applications, and support some in-house analytics.
We partner with Google for some marketing activities. If you are coming to SearchApi from a Google ad, and are in the United States, Google will send a cookie to your browser to determine whether you visited SearchApi.io because of a particular advertisement you viewed. This enables us to evaluate the effectiveness of these ads.
A cookie is a piece of text stored by your browser. It may help remember login information and site preferences. It might also collect information such as your browser type, operating system, web pages visited, duration of visit, content viewed, and other click-stream data. You can adjust cookie retention settings in your own browser. To learn more about cookies, including how to view which cookies have been set and how to manage and delete them, please visit: www.allaboutcookies.org.
At this time, our sites and applications do not respond to Do Not Track beacons sent by browser plugins.
When you write SearchApi with a question or to ask for help, we keep that correspondence, including the email address, so that we have a history of past correspondences to reference if you reach out in the future.
We also store any information you volunteer like surveys. Sometimes when we do customer interviews, we may ask for your permission to record the conversation for future reference or use. We only do so if you give your express consent.
Information we do not collect
We don’t collect any characteristics of protected classifications including age, race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or physical and mental abilities or disabilities. You may provide these data voluntarily, such as if you include a pronoun preference in your email signature when writing into our Support team.
We also do not collect any biometric data. You are given the option to add a picture to your user profile, which could be a real picture of you or a picture of something else that represents you best. We do not extract any information from profile pictures: they are for your use alone.
When we access or share your information
Our default practice is to not access your information. The only times we’ll ever access or share your info are:
To provide products or services you’ve requested. We do use some third-party services to run our applications and only to the extent necessary process some or all of your personal information via these third parties. You can view the list of third-party services we use in each product here. Having subprocessors means we are using technology to access your data. No SearchApi human looks at your data for these purposes unless an error occurs that stops an automated process from working and requires manual intervention to fix. These are rare cases and when they happen, we look for root cause solutions as much as possible to avoid them from reoccurring.
To help you troubleshoot or squash a software bug.
When required under applicable law.
SearchApi, LLC is a US company and all data infrastructure are located in the US.
- If US law enforcement authorities have the necessary warrant, criminal subpoena, or court order requiring we share data, we have to comply. Otherwise, we flat-out reject requests from local and federal law enforcement when they seek data. And unless we’re legally prevented from it, we’ll always inform you when such requests are made. In the event a government authority outside the US approaches SearchApi with a request, our default stance is to refuse unless the US government compels us to comply through procedures outlined in a mutual legal assistance treaty or agreement. We have never received a National Security Letter or Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) order.
- Similarly, if SearchApi receives a request to preserve data, we refuse unless compelled by either the US Federal Stored Communications Act, 18 U.S.C. Section 2703(f) or a properly served US subpoena for civil matters. In both of these situations, we have to comply. In these situations, we notify affected customers as soon as possible unless we are legally prohibited from doing so. We do not share preserved data unless absolutely required under the Stored Communications Act or compelled by a court order that we choose not to appeal. Furthermore, unless we receive a proper warrant, court order, or subpoena before the required preservation period expires, we destroy any preserved copies we made of customer data once the preservation period lapses.
- If we get an informal request from any person, organization, or entity, we do not assist.
- If we are audited by a tax authority, we may be required to share billing-related information. If that happens, we only share the bare minimum needed such as billing addresses and tax exemption information.
Your rights with respect to your information
At SearchApi, we apply the same data rights to all customers, regardless of their location. Currently some of the most privacy-forward regulations in place are the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) and California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”) in the US. SearchApi recognizes all of the rights granted in these regulations, except as limited by applicable law. These rights include:
- Right of Access. This includes your right to access the personal information we gather about you, and your right to obtain information about the sharing, storage, security and processing of that information.
- Right to Correction. You have the right to request correction of your personal information.
- Right to Erasure / “To be Forgotten”. This is your right to request, subject to certain limitations under applicable law, that your personal information be erased from our possession and, by extension, all of our service providers. Fulfillment of some data deletion requests may prevent you from using SearchApi services because our applications may then no longer work. In such cases, a data deletion request may result in closing your account.
- Right to Complain. You have the right to make a complaint regarding our handling of your personal information with the appropriate supervisory authority. To identify your specific authority or find out more about this right, EU individuals should go to https://edpb.europa.eu/about-edpb/board/members_en.
- Right to Restrict Processing. This is your right to request restriction of how and why your personal information is used or processed, including opting out of sale of personal information. (Again: we never have and never will sell your personal data.)
- Right to Object. You have the right, in certain situations, to object to how or why your personal information is processed.
- Right to Portability. You have the right to receive the personal information we have about you and the right to transmit it to another party.
- Right to not be subject to Automated Decision-Making. You have the right to object and prevent any decision that could have a legal, or similarly significant, effect on you from being made solely based on automated processes. This right is limited, however, if the decision is necessary for performance of any contract between you and us, is allowed by applicable law, or is based on your explicit consent.
- Right to Non-Discrimination. This right stems from the CCPA. We do not and will not charge you a different amount to use our products, offer you different discounts, or give you a lower level of customer service because you have exercised your data privacy rights. However, the exercise of certain rights (such as the right “to be forgotten”) may, by virtue of your exercising those rights, prevent you from using our Services.
Many of these rights can be exercised by signing in and directly updating your account information.
If you have questions about exercising these rights or need assistance, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. For requests to delete personal information or know what personal information has been collected, we will first verify your identity using a combination of at least two pieces of information already collected including your user email address. If an authorized agent is corresponding on your behalf, we will first need written consent with a signature from the account holder before proceeding.
If you are in the EU, you can identify your specific authority to file a complaint or find out more about GDPR, at https://edpb.europa.eu/about-edpb/board/members_en.
How we secure your data
All data is encrypted via SSL/TLS when transmitted from our servers to your browser. The database backups are also encrypted.
Most data are not encrypted while they live in our database (since it needs to be ready to send to you when you need it), but we go to great lengths to secure your data at rest.
What happens when you delete data in your product account
In many of our applications, we give you the option to trash data. Anything you trash on your product accounts while they are active will be kept in an accessible trash can for up to 30 days (it varies a little by product). After that, the trashed data are no longer accessible via the application and are deleted from our active servers within the next 30 days. We also have some backups of our application databases, which are kept for up to another 30 days. In total, when you trash things in our applications, they are purged within 90 days from all of our systems and logs. Retrieving data for a single account from a backup is cost-prohibitive and unduly burdensome so if you change your mind you’ll need to do so before your data are deleted from our active servers.
We also delete your data after an account is cancelled. In this case, there is no period of data being kept in an accessible trash can so your data are purged within 60 days. This applies both for cases when an account owner directly cancels and for auto-cancelled accounts.
Location of site and data
Our products and other web properties are operated in the United States. If you are located in the European Union or elsewhere outside of the United States, please be aware that any information you provide to us will be transferred to and stored in the United States. By using our Site, participating in any of our services and/or providing us with your information, you consent to this transfer.
Changes & questions
We may update this policy as needed to comply with relevant regulations and reflect any new practices. Whenever we make a significant change to our policies, we will also announce them on our company announcements page.
Adapted from the Basecamp open-source policies / CC BY 4.0