Information we collect
This section details the information we may collect about you. We explain why, and how, we use it in later sections.
Information provided directly through your input
- Bluetooth Troubleshooter : If you use our troubleshooting feature, we track your usage through the service in order to provide you with quick access in case you need to leave the page you were on. This includes optionally providing us with your email address to provide you a link to give you quick access to where you left off when last using the trouble-shooter. In the process of using the troubleshooter you may need to tell us about hardare you use which is not in our database of devices. We use any device information provided to improve the troubleshooter for other users.
- Ask a Question Forum : We collect your name (you may provide any name, nickname or pseudonym), email address and details of problems expressed throughout any questions or answers you publish on the forum.
If you follow a question at any point independently of creating/responding to it then we also collect your email address for this purpose.
- Device rating service : Various pages in the website provide an interface through which you can rate the hardware you own. These ratings along with any feedback you give are collected anonymously. We log ip addresses and submission times but only to assist us in stopping the bulk submission of false ratings.
Information we obtain through cookies and similar tools
Lawful basis for processing
We only process personal information where we have a lawful basis for doing so, such as the following:
- User consent – This is where you have given us explicit permission to process personal information for a given purpose. For example, if you complete one of our general enquiry forms, we would ask for your consent if we wanted to use your personal information for any other purpose. You have the right to withdraw this consent at any time. You can manage your preferences within your account or by contacting customer services.
- Legitimate business purposes – This is where we have a legitimate interest, as a business, to process personal information. For example, where we are aware of copyright infringements on our Site, it is in our legitimate interests as a business to identify those responsible. We take due care to balance our interests against your right to privacy.
- Contractual necessity – This is where we have to process personal information to meet our contractual obligations. For example, if you are a print subscriber, we would need to process your delivery address to fulfil your subscription.
- Legal obligation – This is where we have to process personal information in order to comply with the law. For example, we process and retain customer invoice information to comply with financial regulations.
How we use your personal information
We collect personal information for the folllowing reasons:
- To provide our service – We require some of your basic personal information so our services work as you would expect; for example notifying you of updates to questions in the forum. The data also assists giving an insight to functionality and popular features on the site.
- To improve and maintain performance – In order to provide you with the best possible user experience, we need to make sure that our products and services work as they should. Using personal information helps us understand how our readers use our site so we can make improvements. This includes testing proposed developments on our site, reaching out to our customers with market research surveys and hosting subscriber focus groups.
- To monitor compliance with our policies and terms – We monitor for breaches of our terms and conditions and copyright policies. For example, we reserve the right to inform the subscription holder if, through use of a group subscription, you are using our content in breach of the terms and conditions or copyright policies of our website. We also monitor activity on our site to detect and prevent invalid or fraudulent traffic.
- To personalise our products and services – We improve your experience of our products and services by personalising parts of our site and apps with the information you give us and what we learn about you. This includes showing you content you may be interested in and recommending emails you may wish to sign up to. Where our site has such functionality, you can manage elements of personalisation in your account.
- For the purpose of advertising – We rely on advertising revenue in part to support the website. We need to process your information to understand the effectiveness of the advertising we serve to you and others, and to deliver relevant personalised advertising. We use the information you give us and the information we collect about you to serve you with the most appropriate advertisements. You can manage your advertising settings for the site by clicking in the small information icon top right of any banner shown on the website. If you do decide to turn off personalised advertisements or advertisements tailored to you, you will still see the same number of advertisements but they may be less relevant to you. You may continue to see advertisements that are targeted to you based on other non-personal information, for example, the article that you are reading. More information about advertisments through our service partner Google can be read here.
Note that in order to comply with GDPR legislation, users within the EEA will by default not recieve personalised advertising.
Who we share your personal information with
We disclose personal information to facilitate the running of our business or to provide specific services you have requested. Commonly, we will disclose information to:
- Service providers – We engage service providers who help to support our business and improve our products. These service providers include, for example, fulfilment providers for delivery of our digital content and marketing; customer service agencies; hosts, organisers and sponsors of our events; organisations that host our site or databases; and providers of online surveys.We also work with a number of distribution partners to deliver subscriptions. We have contracts in place with these data processors and they can only use your personal information under our instruction. For example, if you have a print subscription with us, we will disclose your information (address, contact details) to our distribution partners to facilitate delivery of the newspaper or magazine.
- Other users – Our site is publicly accessible and anyone around the world who accesses our site will be able to see anything you post, such as responses to a forum question. We encourage you to use a pseudonym when commenting on our site if you do not wish to be identifiable to other readers.
How long we retain your personal information
Where we don't need to keep all of your information in full, we will obfuscate or aggregate it, for example, web activity logs and survey responses. This is to ensure that we do not retain your information for any longer than is necessary.
It is sometimes necessary for us to keep your personal information for longer periods of time, for example:
- If there is a statutory requirement to retain it;
- If we require the information for legal reasons or there is a legitimate business need for us to retain it;
- To ensure we do not contact you if you have asked us not to.
How we keep your personal information secure
We have appropriate technical and administrative security measures in place to help ensure that our users' information is protected against unauthorised or accidental access, use, alteration, or loss. We use encryption technology, such as Transport Layer Security (TLS), to protect your personal information when you order products or services from us.
We operate a global business, so your personal information may be processed and stored outside the European Economic Area (EEA).
Third party services and your data
We may use some or all of the following third-party service providers named below to process and store your data. We have verified that their own data handling procedures are compliant with current legislation (links to their privacy policies are provided below):
Under data protection laws, you have rights as an individual in relation to the personal data we hold about you. These rights include:
- The right to object to direct marketing – your preferences, including in relation to direct marketing, can be controlled by clicking in the small information icon top right of any banner shown on the website.
- The right to access the personal data that we process about you - you can view all this through the Manage my Data function on the website;
- The right to request the deletion of your personal data - you can request to unsubscribe or anonymise your input at any point by following links provided in the emails we send you or using the Manage my Data option at the bottom of any page in the website;
- The right to request the rectification of your personal data.
You also have the right to lodge a complaint with a supervisory authority.
Our site is not intended for children under 16 years of age. We do not intentionally collect or use any information from children.
If you have a query in regards to the processing of your personal information, please contact us.
Last Updated: 31st October, 2018.