This policy does not apply to information about you collected by third party websites and offerings linked to or otherwise accessible from AOL. The information collected or received by third parties is subject to their own privacy policies.
Further, AOL and its affiliates collect and process personal information from users within the European Union in connection with their various product and service offerings, which include portal services (such as AOL.co.uk) ; and advertising services (such as those offered by AOL affiliates, like AOL Advertising (the “AOL Advertising Network”).
In connection with these offerings, AOL Inc. AOL’s parent company, and its affiliates adhere to the EU-US Safe Harbor Privacy Principles of Notice Choice, Onward Transfer, Security, Data Integrity, Access and Enforcement, and is registered with the U.S Department of Commerce’s Safe Harbor Program
Collection of Your Personal Information
We collect or receive information about you when you register for and use the AOL Services. Registering with AOL and/or the Huffington Post UK is optional and we may collect information even if you do not register. Depending on how you use the AOL Services, your personal information (“Personal Information”) may include:
- registration-related information (such as name, addresses, e-mail addresses, telephone numbers, birth date, or gender) which you may provide when you register for or log into an AOL or Huffington Post account, order products or services from AOL, or enter prize promotions;
- information about the AOL Services that you use, how frequently you use them (such as your use of email or instant messenger); and your responses to the offerings and advertisements presented on AOL or other features made available by AOL, including those available on third party websites;
- information about the searches you perform through AOL Services and how you use the results of those searches;
- personal financial information related to the use of AOL financial features (such as My Portfolios).
- transaction-related information (such as credit card or other preferred means of payment, billing or shipping information, or a history of products purchased through the AOL UK Lifestore);
- your customer service information (including web services account activity histories and records of your communications with our customer services team);
- records of your communications with us (whether in writing, by email or by telephone) for the training and monitoring of our staff and to improve our service;
- location data and other information about devices used to access and interact with AOL Services;
- other information specifically related to your use of AOL services, including information that you publicly post using tools made available by AOL; or
- information about your online activities – for example, your patterns of browsing, clicking, purchasing and searches you perform when using the AOL Services – so that we can tailor your experience of the AOL Services according to your apparent preferences, as expressed through those patterns of activity.
Your Personal information may be supplemented with additional information from other companies such as:
- publicly available information, information about households,
- commercially available demographic information which we obtain from third party organisations (for example, Experian) in order to deliver customised advertising and/or content to you. In most cases this will involve the physical transfer of Personal Information held by AOL to that third party organisation, but strictly on the basis that such third parties will act as Data Processor on AOL’s behalf in respect of such data, and as such will have no independent rights of access to or use of the Personal Information. This means that, among other things, the third party organisation in question must securely delete/return to AOL all such data when AOL’s arrangements with that third party come to an end, and may not use the data in any way other than as specifically instructed by AOL,
- third party social networking services (such as Facebook Connect or Twitter) when you access such third party social networks through AOL Services, your username and connection lists for those services (for further information on this, see our ‘Social Media Interactivity’ below)
- and other information which we may append or match to your Personal Information.
AOL may also receive or collect certain technical information when you use AOL Services. This may include: your browser or operating system, your manner of connecting to the Internet (including the type of device you are using) and the name of your Internet service provider or wireless carrier; your Internet protocol (IP) address; your unique device ID; information about AOL Services that you used prior to registering with AOL; and data relating to malfunctions or problems occurring when you use your device with AOL Services. Additionally, we may collect information about other software on your device for the limited purpose of protecting your security or improving your online experience.
Social Media Interactivity
To customise your experience on AOL Services and to simplify our registration processes, we provide you with the opportunity to access or interact with third-party services, such as Facebook and Twitter. When you login to AOL Services through these third-party services, we may share information about you with these third-party service providers and they may share data about you with us.
When you allow us to access your data through a third-party service to create an account, we may use this data for several purposes, including:
- Creating relationships automatically within our system. For example, if you connect to us via a service with a public friend list, like Twitter, we may check to see if any people you follow on Twitter also hold AOL Services accounts. If we find a match, we will replicate your Twitter relationship with those AOL Network members, setting them to be fans, followers, or friends on the AOL Services.
- Suggesting relationships. For example, if you connect via a service that has a private contact list (like Google and Yahoo!), we check for people in your contacts who are AOL Services members and suggest that you become a fan of these users. This process is not automatic; you must affirmatively choose to become a fan of these suggested users.
- Populating a list of potential friends to whom you can send emails. When users share content with their friends using, for example, the forward-to-a-friend feature on AOL Services, we may use friend lists from third-party services to create a list of contacts to whom you may choose to send the email message.
- Populating a list of potential friends to whom you can send service-specific messages. For example, we may use friend lists from a third-party service to create a list of contacts to whom you may choose to send an invitation to view an interactive slideshow.
- To enhance and personalize your experience on AOL Services. When you are connected via a third-party service, we may access certain account information, such as your profile picture, what stories are popular in your network, and what your friends are saying about certain articles or blog posts, in order to enhance and personalize your experience on AOL Services.
In addition, if you connect to a Facebook account, your experience on the AOL Services may be personalised. For example, you may automatically see what stories are popular in your network, and what your friends are saying about particular stories.
Please note that you may disconnect third party accounts at any time. You may set your privacy preferences or disconnect all of your third-party service accounts from your social profile. You also may be able to modify your privacy settings directly with the third-party service. In addition, you can modify your Facebook privacy settings and your Twitter privacy settings.
Please remember that we do not control the privacy practices of these third-party services. We encourage you to read the privacy policies of all third-party service providers.
How Your Personal Information is used
Your Personal information is used for purposes that include:
- to operate and improve the AOL Services;
- to personalize the content and advertisements provided to you (including to present offers to you on behalf of business partners and advertisers);
- to fulfill your requests for products, programs, and services;
- to communicate with you by electronic methods (including email, text, picture, video and sms messaging), about offers and information on the products and AOL Services offered by AOL or third parties and respond to your inquiries;
- to conduct research about your use of AOL Services;
- to help offer you other products, programs, or services that may be of interest;
- to provide you with an open, but also civil, discussion forum on Huffington Post UK. We track user involvement in our Huffington Post UK community discussions. For example, we keep track of the ratio of how many flagged comments are eventually deleted in order to award badges to our most effective commenters. For more information on this process, please see our FAQ Section about comment moderation guidelines.
AOL may use information about your use of certain communication tools (for example, AOL e-mail or AOL Instant Messenger); however, when you use AOL communication tools, AOL does not read your private online communications without your consent.
Where your Personal Information is stored?
AOL is a global organisation, and many of the computers and companies that process information on our behalf are based in the USA and other countries outside the European Economic Area (the "EEA"). This means that your Personal Information (which may include information you provide about your racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, or trade union membership, or concerning health or sex life) may be transferred to, processed and held both inside and outside the EEA
How long do we keep Personal Information?
We may retain your Personal Information as long as is necessary for the purposes for which we collected it, or for the period to which you consent under the AOL Services Agreement, as explained here or under the specific terms applicable to your use of the AOL Services, or as is otherwise required by applicable law. We may process your Personal Information for a reasonable period after your AOL Services account is cancelled. However please note that any information that we have copied may remain in back-up storage for a longer period.
If you have purchased any paid for AOL Services from AOL (for example, via the AOL Lifestore), we may retain payment-related information, such as a payment card number which you supplied to us for billing purposes for an unlimited period after your paid for AOL Services account has been cancelled for fraud prevention purposes.
Sharing of Your Personal Information
- if we or an entity processing your Personal Information our behalf is compelled to do so by law in response to lawful governmental requests or legal process (for example, a court order, search warrant or subpoena),
- in other circumstances in which AOL believes that a crime has been or is being committed by an AOL user, or that there is a threat to the safety of you or another person,
- or otherwise in accordance with applicable laws and regulations.
Please note that if you use AOL communications tools to disclose information about yourself publicly (for example, by leaving a comment on an AOL Service), others outside of AOL may obtain access to information you provide.
AOL’s offerings may include features or functionalities provided by third parties. In the process of providing such functionalities within the AOL Services, your browser may automatically send certain technical information to the third party provider. The use of these third-party provided features or functionalities is subject to their own privacy policies. In addition if you make any online purchases and/or registrations from third parties whilst online with AOL, make sure that you review their privacy policies and contact them directly if you have any questions. They may have privacy policies that differ from AOL’s , and they may therefore use Personal Information which you provide to them differently.
Business partners or other third parties may receive data about groups of AOL users, but do not receive information that personally identifies you.
We may use agents and contractors in order to help operate AOL. Their use of information is limited to these purposes.
In the event that ownership of AOL was to change as a result of a merger, acquisition, or transfer to another company, your Personal Information may be transferred. If such a transfer results in a material change in the use of your Personal Information, you will be provided notice about the choices you have to decline to permit such a transfer.
Display of Advertising
As noted above, we use the data we collect or receive about users' online activities to help us show ads for products or services users are likely to be interested in. Please note that we retain certain information for a limited time to aid in the targeting of ads, as well as for fraud detection and prevention. Data used to create segments for ad targeting is retained for no longer than 2 years. Other data (for example, data used to determine long-term or seasonal trends) may be retained for as long as AOL has a legitimate business reason for retaining it.
AOL adheres to the European Interactive Digital Advertising Alliance's ("EDAA") principles.
You can learn more about advertising displayed on AOL as well as how you can control the use of your Personal information for such advertising.
Your Choices about Your Personal Information
- AOL provides you with access to your registration information and where you have purchased any fee-based AOL Services, any billing information, as well as the ability to edit this information and cancel fee-based AOL Services at My Account.
- You can change and review your AOL Marketing Preferences and make choices about how your Personal Information may be used to provide marketing offers to you. These preferences do not apply to communications that are directly related to your registration with AOL, or the fulfillment of a specific transaction you have requested (for example, a service advisory from AOL, or an acknowledgment of a purchase order).
- Visit AOL Advertising, Analytics, and Privacy to learn more about your choices related to online advertising.
- Some AOL Services ( AOL Search for example) may also offer you the ability to manage and control information collected or used when you use these services.
Our Commitment to Security
AOL Services are intended for a general audience, and children under the age of thirteen should not register without the consent of a parent or guardian. AOL offers services directed toward children such as parentally controlled screen names. We urge all parents to educate their children about online safety and the need to protect their Personal Information. In any event, AOL does not collect any Personal Information of anyone under at the age of 13 without disclosing how that information will be used or without parental consent.
How to Contact Us
In writing to:Data Protection Officer
AOL (UK) Limited
11-20 Capper Street,
London, WC1E 6JA
or via email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
AOL (UK) Limited is registered with the UK Information Commissioner’s Office under registration number: Z5298132.
Last Updated: 20-02-2014