This statement was last updated on January 31, 2007
StartSampling is a licensee of the TRUSTe Privacy Program. TRUSTe is an independent organization whose mission is to build users' trust and confidence in the Internet by promoting the use of fair information practices. This privacy statement covers the site www.startsampling.com. Because this web site wants to demonstrate its commitment to your privacy, it has agreed to disclose its information practices and have its privacy practices reviewed for compliance by TRUSTe. By displaying the TRUSTe trustmark, this web site has agreed to notify you of:
- What personally identifiable information of yours or third party personally identification is collected from you through the web site
- The organization collecting the information
- How the information is used
- With whom the information may be shared
- What choices are available to you regarding collection, use and distribution of the information
- The kind of security procedures that are in place to protect the loss, misuse or alteration of information under StartSampling's control
- How you can correct any inaccuracies in the information.
If you have questions or concerns regarding this statement, you should first contact StartSampling's Member Services department by sending email to email@example.com. If you do not receive acknowledgment of your inquiry or your inquiry has not been satisfactorily addressed, you should then contact TRUSTe. TRUSTe will then serve as a liaison with the Web site to resolve your concerns.
At StartSampling.com, your privacy is our priority. We are committed to protecting your privacy at all times, in all situations. The information we collect about you when you become a member is used to process your sample orders and to provide a more personalized sampling experience on our site.
How Do We Use the Information We Collect?
When you become a StartSampling member, we ask you to fill out a form that requests your name, address and e-mail address as well as some demographic information such as gender, date of birth, marital status and information about your family and pets.
StartSampling may share data with trusted partners to help us perform statistical analysis. All such third parties are prohibited from using your information except to provide these services to StartSampling and they are required to maintain confidentiality.
Your name and address information is used solely to process sample orders unless your prior consent is given. Without your consent, this information will NEVER be sold, given, rented or traded to others for purposes other than sample order fulfillment.
Your demographic information (gender, date of birth, etc.) is used for several purposes:
- Demographic information is provided back to our customers (companies that provide us with product samples for you to select) in an aggregated way. For example, we may tell a customer that 65% of our members who selected their samples were male while 35% were female. We never release individual demographics to a customer or any other party without your consent, except to the extent necessary for order fulfillment. These parties are contractually obligated with StartSampling to use your information only for the purposes of shipping your samples.
- StartSampling, Inc. uses demographic information in aggregated terms to tailor our sales efforts. For example, if we know that 65% of our members have dogs we will try to line up some dog-related samples for our site.
If you choose to use our referral service to tell a friend about our site, we will ask you for your friend's name and email address. We will automatically send your friend a one-time email inviting him or her to visit the site. StartSampling does not store this information and uses it for the sole purpose of sending this one-time email.
Our Use of Log Files
When you visit our site we automatically log your IP address, your browser type and your access times. We utilize this information to conduct site performance evaluations, to see where visitors are coming from and to keep track of click stream data (the screens our users visit on our site). This data helps us to determine what content our members find most appealing so that we can maximize your enjoyment of the site. We may also combine log file data with demographic information in aggregate form to analyze trends. For example we may find that in general, men prefer different site features than women. We may also combine log files with cookie information to aggregate information. Log files are not tied to personally identifiable information.
All StartSampling employees take your personal information very seriously. All employees must learn and obey our security policies. Access to member personal information is limited to key management personnel and our member services department. The information is ID and password protected and our Web security is reviewed on a monthly basis.
We follow generally accepted industry standards to protect the personal information submitted to us, both during transmission and once we receive it. No method of transmission over the Internet, or method of electronic storage, is 100% secure, however. Therefore, while we strive to use commercially acceptable means to protect your personal information, we cannot guarantee its absolute security.
If you have any questions about security on our Web site, you can contact us by clicking here.
Use of Intermediaries
StartSampling utilizes the services of an intermediary - the U.S. Postal Service - to send out the samples our subscribers have selected. To our knowledge, the U.S. Postal Service does not store, retain or use the information in any way. In some cases, we also use the order fulfillment services of third parties to get samples to you. These parties are contractually obligated with StartSampling to use your information only for the purpose of shipping your samples.
Correcting/Updating Your Personal Information
After becoming a StartSampling subscriber you may correct/update your personal information by clicking on the 'My Account' link at the top of any page, entering your ID, password and birth date when prompted and clicking the Edit Information button. The changes you make will be reflected in our databases instantly. If you wish to deactivate your account, you may contact our member services group through the 'My Account' section.
Links To Other Sites
If you use a bulletin board, blog, or chat room on this Web site, you should be aware that any personally identifiable information you submit there can be read, collected, or used by other users of these forums, and could be used to send you unsolicited messages. We are not responsible for the personally identifiable information you choose to submit in these forums.
From time to time we may send out email messages alerting you that samples are available, to remind you about providing feedback or for promotional offers. In addition, you will receive communication from us 1) if you contact us for a particular reason, 2) to receive your samples, or 3) we need to contact you for administrative purposes such as winning a contest. You may click here to opt out of promotional e-mails by contacting our member services group. Administrative e-mails will not contain promotional materials.
StartSampling provides you with opt-in opportunities in two ways. First, our site will give you the opportunity to provide more information to us in exchange for Frequent Tryer Miles. These additional forms and SampleSurveys are completely optional. The information you provide if you choose to fill out these forms and surveys may be used to tailor offerings to you and may be shared - in aggregate terms only - with our customers. Second, in some cases, there will be opportunities to opt-in to allow manufacturers to contact you directly. If you choose to participate in these instances, your information may be shared with the specified provider. In some cases these events are set up using an opt-out approach. In either case, you will always have the ability to choose whether you want to participate in these opportunities, but in some cases you will only be allowed to receive a sample or participate in an offer if you agree to share your information.
If you have opted in to be contacted by a third party and then want to opt out of being contacted by that party, you will have to follow the opt out process used by that company. If you have opted in to allow StartSampling to allow third parties to contact you, can opt out of that by contacting us by clicking here.
Though we make every effort to preserve user privacy, we may need to disclose personal information when required by law wherein we have a good-faith belief that such action is necessary to comply with a current judicial proceeding, a court order or legal process served on our Web site.
From a link at the bottom of our main page, we encourage representatives from product manufacturers to tell us how we can reach them if they are interested in finding out more about our sampling services. Use of this form is not intended for individual consumers. Responses are made to legitimate leads, while other information is discarded.
We may correct or supplement your address information with standardized postal representation in order to ensure that your samples get delivered. We do this since we want to make sure that our members receive the samples they order and to lower costs associated with our sample programs.
Periodically, contests are run on our site. Sometimes contests are sponsored by our customers. To enter these contests you need only to enter your ID and password and your guess. At the time of entry, you may decide if you wish to have your first name and state posted on our site if you are the winner. Winners names are NEVER shared with our customers without their consent.
Cookies are pieces of information that your browser stores on your computer's hard drive which identify you when you enter. The ability to select samples on our site is not cookie-driven. Our site utilizes persistent cookies to identify you and automatically credit your Frequent Tryer Miles. To find out more about earning prizes by collecting Frequent Tryer Miles, click here. We may use session cookies to provide a seamless experience on the site and to combine with our log files so that we can understand our site traffic and analyze our demographic information in aggregate form. If you have set your browser to reject cookies, our site will not identify you when you enter and you will need to manually type in your ID and password to receive Frequent Tryer Miles for visiting and reading about manufacturers. The only cookie based information tied to your personally identifiable information is the Frequent Tryer Miles you receive for visiting.
By using our Web site you consent to the collection and use of the information you provide to us as described above. If we are going to use your personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time of collection, we will notify via e-mail. You will have a choice as to whether or not we use your information in this different manner. In addition, if we make any material changes in our privacy practices that do not affect user information already stored in our database, we will post a prominent notice on our web site notifying users of the change. In some cases where we post the notice we will also e-mail users, notifying them of the changes in our privacy practices.
Your Feedback is Always Welcome
You can reach us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
195 E. Elk Trail
Carol Stream, IL 60188