Facts about the Privacy Policy template

What is a privacy policy?

A privacy policy is a disclosure document that tells people how you will use the information collected from them on your website. A well-rounded privacy statement includes details regarding how you gather a user's personal data, what kind of information is gathered, and what happens with this information. This document explains the procedures your company follows and provides answers to important questions about your organization’s data security.

Virtually any business with a website or client records needs a privacy policy, from small businesses to large corporations, service providers, and B2B companies. Modern consumers also expect brick-and-mortar stores to have this type of information policy in place. If you use cookies to track the habits of visitors on your website, you would mention this in your privacy policy. Many sites use cookies to obtain general statistics about the products that site visitors are interested in. It’s especially important to include details regarding the collection of any kind of personal information, as well as the sale or distribution of this information to any third party website.

Health care organizations are legally required to draft a privacy policy that follows federal guidelines in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. Businesses that handle credit card information must have a privacy policy that meets Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard requirements. Websites based in Texas or California must always have a privacy policy in place to function legally.

What is a privacy policy used for?

The purpose of a privacy policy is to inform customers, subscribers, visitors and other users of your data gathering methods. Put simply, it’s a way to tell people when you’re gathering information about them and request their consent to do so, whether it is sensitive personal information or generalized site navigation data. Sensitive personal information covers details such as names, ages, physical addresses, credit card numbers, email addresses, and other information regarding users. Any privacy policy should mention whether the data is stored, used by your business to improve service or sold to third parties.

Why should you use a privacy policy?

People around the world care deeply about privacy. They want to feel in control of how their data is managed and protected. A privacy policy allows your business to show that you support and respect consumer privacy and that you will protect their account information. This can help you build a solid relationship with your customers and an excellent business reputation. On the other hand, disclosing personal information or selling it without consent feels like a betrayal of trust.

If your business handles any kind of sensitive electronic data, such as credit card information, Social Security numbers, or Location data, data privacy is vital. Several state and federal regulations apply to personally identifiable information, including the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule and HIPAA. Failure to follow these guidelines can result in hefty fines or other sanctions. Please be sure to check your local applicable data protection law to make sure you follow all guidelines.

How to write a privacy policy

When writing a privacy policy, always keep it simple. This document is mainly directed at everyday people, not lawyers. Explain things in a way anyone can understand. An excellent privacy notice should answer the following questions:

  • What methods you use for data collection:

    Is the information taken from facebook or other social media profile information, usage data and cookies, or any other form of similar technology?

  • How much information is gathered:

    Do you get the customer’s full name, device identifier, service provider, or IP address? Be specific about exactly what you gather.

  • How long data is stored:

    Do you keep client information saved for years or delete it after a certain amount of time

  • How the information is saved:

    Does your business keep sensitive personal information on its own computers or in the cloud? Is the data encrypted or randomized?

  • Where the data is kept:

    Is any information kept in servers located in a different country?

  • Who is able to access the information:

    How many employees have access to this data? Full disclosure also means revealing if a third party service is involved.

  • How the information is used:

    Do you sell tracked info to another company? If so, spell this out clearly in your privacy policy. What are the direct marketing purposes of the collected data?

  • How you protect the data:

    What kind of privacy practices do you have in place for information protection?

  • How elimination requests are handled:

    What does your business do if people ask to have their account canceled or their data permanently deleted?

How to fill out a privacy policy with PDFSimpli in five steps

  • 1. Prepare:

    The first step is to make decisions about how your company will handle client information. It’s important for everyone to be on the same page so your employees follow the terms of the privacy policy carefully. Once you know the answers to all of the questions above regarding data processing and information security, you’re ready for the next step.

  • 2. Choose Software:

    The software you choose is important for sending and displaying your privacy policy. You need tools that allow you to create, modify, save, download and e-Sign PDF files. At PDFSimpli, you can access all of these tools for free during your trial period, so creating a custom privacy policy is a breeze. Just pick out a privacy policy template you like and get started.

  • 3. Fill Out or Edit the Privacy Policy:

    Our privacy policy templates do most of the work for you, but you can make all the changes you want. Being able to customize PDFs in this way is one of the reasons PDFSimpli is such a popular tool for business owners. To fill in form fields, simply click in the open boxes and type the text you want. It’s also possible to change the existing text. Choose the “text” tool from the toolbar and click on the portion of text you want to replace. The “erase” tool lets you delete paragraphs that you don’t wish to include.

  • 4. Review:

    Always take the time to read through your finished document carefully. You can also add pictures of any security certifications or trust symbols you have using the Image tool. This gives your privacy policy the professional feel that online clients look for. With PDFSimpli, you can always go back and make additional changes later if needed.

  • 5. Save, Download, Print or Send for Signature:

    Once you’re happy with the way everything looks and sounds, save the finished privacy policy using the Save button. We always recommend saving before proceeding to other options, just in case your internet connection gets interrupted. Afterwards, you can use additional buttons at the top of the screen to send, download or submit for e-Sign.

Privacy policy frequently asked questions

Having visitors, clients and users agree to the terms of the privacy policy can provide a level of legal protection for your business, so it’s a smart idea. In the case of contracts, you can have your customer physically sign or e-sign the privacy policy. For web pages, it’s often enough to provide a popup with notification, a link to the full privacy policy, and a check box or button that indicates agreement to the terms. Many companies require visitors to agree to cookies before being able to use the website.

It’s a good idea for your privacy policy to have its own page. You don’t need to include the full text of this policy on every page of your website, but you should put hyperlinks to it on each page. You can also include contact information so users who want to learn more can get in touch via phone or email.

A terms & conditions statement tells visitors how they’re allowed to use your website. Terms & conditions frequently cover topics such as accounts, account settings, payments, warranties and liability limitations. Privacy policies focus completely on details regarding user information: how you collect it, store it, protect it, use it, or sell it.