Privacy and Security Policy
Last Revised: September 28, 2012
BALANCE FINANCIAL IS A BRAND OF TAXACT, INC. TaxACT, Inc. (“Company”), is committed to protecting your privacy and security. We have prepared this Privacy and Security Policy to describe to you our security and privacy policies associated with our website, located at www.balancefinancial.com (“Site”) and the online financial services that we provide (the “Services”).
1. User Consent. By submitting Personal Data through our Site or Services, you agree to the terms of this Privacy and Security Policy and you expressly consent to the collection, use, storage and disclosure of your Personal Data in accordance with this Privacy and Security Policy.
2. No Use By Minors or Children. We do not intentionally gather Personal Data from visitors who are under the age of 13. The Site is not for use by minors under the age of 18.
3. A Note to Users Outside of the United States. Your Personal Data may be processed in the country in which it was collected and in other countries, including the United States, where laws regarding processing of Personal Data may be less stringent than the laws in your country.
4. Types of Data We Collect. Our Site provides services that assist financial professionals and their clients in managing personal finances “Personal Data” means data that allows someone to identify or contact you, including, for example, your name, address, telephone number, e-mail address, as well as any other non-public information about you that is associated with or linked to any of the foregoing data. “Anonymous Data” means data that is not associated with or linked to your Personal Data; Anonymous Data does not, by itself, permit the identification of individual persons. We collect Personal Data and Anonymous Data, as described below.
(a) Information You Provide to Us.
- We may collect Personal Data from you, such as your first and last name, gender, age, e-mail and mailing addresses, professional title, company name, user name and password when you create an account to log in to our network (“Account”).
- We may collect verification information, such as your mother’s maiden name, your date of birth or social security number, to confirm your identity at the time of enrollment. To protect access to your Account, we will also ask you security questions or use other means to verify your identity in the event you contact customer support to recover your password or for other assistance with your Account. This information will only be used to verify critical information about you, including your contact information, in relation to your Account.
- In order for you to benefit from the full functionality of our Services, you may also provide your account credentials (“Account Information”) for the online services provided by your financial service providers such as banks, lenders, credit card companies, credit unions, brokerage firms etc. By providing your Account Information you agree to allow Company to work with our third party partners to log in to your accounts and access your information. These partners then provide this data to us for use on the Site, where it may be viewed by you, as well as Guests and Pros with whom you collaborate in order to help us provide you the Services on our Site. Any Account Information received by us from third parties is linked to your account and is treated by us as Personal Data.
- If you use our premium services such as Bill Pay (subject to our Premium Service Terms and Conditions) we will need to collect additional information. For example, in order to assist you in making payments to third parties (each, a “Bill” and collectively “Bills”), we will need to obtain account information and balances for your payment accounts (the accounts from which we draw funds to pay your Bills), account information from the third party payees that you wish us to pay, and your own preferences and parameters to us about how to prioritize and pay your Bills.
- When you purchase Services on our Site, we require the payment information necessary to complete the transaction, including your name, credit card number, bank account information and billing information. All supplied sensitive/credit information is transmitted over 128- bit Secure Socket Layer (“SSL”) technology and then encrypted into our payment gateway provider’s database only to be accessible by those authorized with special access rights to such systems and who have agreed to keep the information confidential. After the transaction, this sensitive payment information will not be stored on our servers.
- We retain information on your behalf, such as projects, documents, reports, files, notes, comments and messages that you may create, send, receive or store using your Account.
- If you provide us feedback or contact us via e-mail, we will collect your name and e-mail address, as well as any other content included in the e-mail, in order to send you a reply.
- When you participate in one of our surveys, we may collect additional profile information.
- We also collect other types of Personal Data that you provide to us voluntarily, such as your operating system and version; and other requested information if you contact us via e-mail regarding support for the Services.
- We may also collect Personal Data at other points in our Site that state that Personal Data is being collected.
(b) Information Collected via Technology.
- To make our Site and Services more useful to you, our servers (which may be hosted by a third party service provider) collect information from you, including your browser type, operating system, Internet Protocol (“IP”) address (a number that is automatically assigned to your computer when you use the Internet, which may vary from session to session), domain name, and/or a date/time stamp for your visit.
- Our third party service provider employs a software technology called Web Beacons that help us better manage content on our site by informing us what content is effective. Web Beacons are tiny graphics with a unique identifier, similar in function to cookies, and are used to track the online movements of Web users.
(c) Information Collected from You About Others. If you decide to invite a third party to the Site, we will collect your and the third party’s names and e-mail addresses in order to send an e-mail and follow up with the third party. You or the third party may contact us at email@example.com to request the removal of this information from our database.
(d) Information Collected from Third Party Companies. We may receive Personal and/or Anonymous Data about you from companies that provide our Services by way of a co-branded or private-labeled website or companies that offer their products and/or services on our Site. These third party companies may supply us with Personal Data. We may add this information to the information we have already collected from you via our Site in order to improve the Services we provide.
5. Use of Your Personal Data
(a) We do not and will not sell or rent your Personal Data to anyone, for any reason, at any time. We may use your Personal Data in the following ways:
- facilitate the creation of and secure your Account on our network;
- identify you as a user in our system;
- analyze Site usage and improve our Site and Services;
- provide the Services you request (including interaction with third party Pros or Guests);
- improve the quality of experience when you interact with our Site and Services;
- send you a welcome e-mail to verify ownership of the e-mail address provided when your Account was created;
- send you administrative e-mail notifications, such as security or support and maintenance advisories, money alerts, and communications relevant to your use of the Services;
- market research, planning, troubleshooting, planning problems, detecting and protecting against error, fraud, or other criminal activity;
- enforce our Terms of Service;
- respond to your inquiries related to employment opportunities or other requests;
- make telephone calls to you, from time to time, as a part of secondary fraud protection or to solicit your feedback; and
- send newsletters, surveys, offers, and other promotional materials related to our Services and for other marketing purposes of Company.
(b) Creation of Anonymous Data. We may create Anonymous Data records from Personal Data by excluding information (such as your name, email etc.) that make the data personally identifiable to you. We will never include account information (i.e. credit card or bank account numbers or log-on credentials) in any Anonymous Data. We use this Anonymous Data to analyze request and usage patterns so that we may enhance the content of our Services and improve Site navigation. We reserve the right to use Anonymous Data for any purpose and to disclose Anonymous Data to third parties in our sole discretion, including:
- Pros for the purpose of comparing clients’ personal financial situation to other comparable users or to the broader community.
- Advertisers and other third parties for other marketing and promotional purposes including to create special offers for our customers ;
- Organizations that conduct research into consumer spending; and
- Users of the Services for the purpose of comparing their personal financial situation to other comparable users or to the broader community.
6. Disclosure of Your Personal Data. We may disclose your Personal Data as described below and as described elsewhere in this Privacy and Security Policy.
(a) Financial Professionals. As part of the Services you may work with one or more third party financial professionals (“Pros”). By inviting or accepting an invitation to work with a Pro on the Site, you are providing the Pro with the ability to view your Personal Data. Pros are required to abide by the terms and conditions of the Site as well as this Privacy and Security Policy and may use your Personal Data only to assist in providing you with the Services on the Site.
(b) Guests. You may, at your own discretion, allow family members or other invited guests (“Guests”) to have access to the Site for the purpose of assisting you. By inviting a Guest on the Site, you are providing the Guest with the ability to view your Personal Data. Guests are required to abide by the terms and conditions of the Site as well as of this Privacy and Security Policy and may use your Personal Data only to assist in providing you with the Services on the Site.
(c) Third Party Service Providers. We may share your Personal Data with third party service providers to: provide you with the Services that we offer you through our Site; conduct quality assurance testing; facilitate creation of accounts; provide technical support; and/or provide other services to the Company. These third party service providers are required not to use your Personal Data other than to provide the services requested by Company.
(d) Affiliates and Acquisitions. We may share some or all of your Personal Data with our parent company, subsidiaries, joint ventures, or other companies under a common control (“Affiliates”), in which case we will require our Affiliates to honor this Privacy and Security Policy. If another company acquires our company, business, or our assets, that company will possess the Personal Data collected by us and will assume the rights and obligations regarding your Personal Data as described in this Privacy and Security Policy.
(e) Other Disclosures. Regardless of any choices you make regarding your Personal Data (as described below), we may disclose Personal Data if we believe in good faith that such disclosure is necessary (i) in connection with any legal investigation; (ii) to comply with relevant laws or to respond to subpoenas or warrants served on Company; (iii) to protect or defend the rights or property of Company or users of the Services; and/or (iv) to investigate or assist in preventing any violation or potential violation of the law, this Privacy and Security Policy, or Terms of Service.
7. Third Party Data Collection.
(a) Information Disclosed to Ad Networks. In the future we may use third-party advertising companies to serve ads when you visit our Site. These companies may collect and use information (not including your name, address, email address, or telephone number) about your visits to this and other websites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services to you. If you would like more information about this practice and to know your choices about not having this information used by these companies, go towww.networkadvertising.org/managing/opt_out.asp
(b) Third Party Websites. We may offer links to third party websites. When you click on a link to any other website or location, you will leave our Site and go to another site and another entity may collect Personal Data or Anonymous Data from you. We have no control over, do not review, and cannot be responsible for, these outside websites or their content. Please be aware that the terms of this Privacy and Security Policy do not apply to these outside websites or content, or to any collection of data after you click on links to such outside websites.
8. Data Ownership, Transfer and Termination. Your Personal Data belongs to you. You may copy or remove any of your Personal Data from the Site at any time. Our Site is designed to put you in control of your finances and improve your ability to collaborate with Pros and Guests.
(a) Termination of Pros, Guests and Accounts
(i) Pros. You may choose the Pros with whom you wish to interact on the site. You may terminate Pro access to your Account at any time by by updating your contact list in the Account Access section of your Profile. Changes to Pro Status must be processed by our systems, including notification of the affected Pro(s), and therefore may not be reflected immediately on the Site. If your access to the Site is sponsored (i.e. paid for) by the Pro that you are terminating access for, You may be required to select another Pro or purchase an individual subscription in order to maintain access to the Site. [Messages and other specific communications (i.e. collaboration on Projects) between you and a particular Pro are treated as confidential between you and the Pro, and may not be visible to other Pros unless the first Pro consents to their disclosure.]
(ii) Guests. You may choose the Guests that have access to your account. You may modify or terminate Guest access to your Account at any time by updating your contact list in the Account Access section of your Profile. Changes to Guest status must be processed by our systems and may not be reflected immediately on the Site. [Messages and other specific communications (i.e. collaboration on Projects) between you and a particular Guest are treated as confidential between you and the Guest, and may not be visible to other Guests unless you specifically allow it.]
(iii) Account Information. You may choose the Account Information (third party financial accounts) that link to your Balance account. You may modify your Account Information at any time by visiting the Accounts area of our Site. Changes to Guest status must be processed by our systems and may not be reflected immediately on the Site.
(b) Termination of Your Account. You may terminate your Account by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org Upon termination of your Account, we will terminate access to your Account by You and all associated Pros and Guests, and we will promptly disconnect any connection(s) to your Account Information. However, we will maintain the Personal Data in your Account unless You specifically request its deletion by sending an email to us at email@example.com Please note, however, that even if you request deletion of your Personal Data by us, we may be required to keep this information and not delete it (or to keep this information for a certain time, in which case we will comply with your deletion request only after we have fulfilled such requirements). For example, we may retain your Personal Data if you claim that a Pro or Guest or other third party has misused your Personal Data, committed fraud or other illegal act against You. We may also retain your information for the purpose of bill payment processing. For example, if you request a payment through the Services, we will need to retain a record of the payment in case there is ever a dispute or a chargeback. When we delete any information, it will be deleted from our production servers and the associated active database, but may remain in our automatic back-up servers and associated archives indefinitely. We also reserve the right to continue to use any aggregated or Anonymous Data derived from your Personal Data following such termination.
(c) Electronic Communications
(i) We may periodically send you free newsletters, alerts, text messages or e-mails that promote the use of our Site or Services. When you receive newsletters or other promotional communications from us, you may indicate a preference to stop receiving further communications from us and you will have the opportunity to “opt-out” by following the unsubscribe instructions provided in the e-mail you receive or by contacting us directly (please see contact information below).
(ii) Despite your indicated e-mail preferences, we may send you service related communication, including notices of service outages and any updates to our Terms of Service or Privacy and Security Policy.
9. System Outages and Data Loss. We are committed to protecting the integrity and availability of your Personal Data. We employ industry–standard back-up procedures to help protect your Personal Data from accidental loss or deletion. While the Company uses these and other reasonable efforts to preserve your Personal Data, the Site may experience maintenance periods or system outages from time to time, and no method of back-up or electronic storage is 100% reliable. Therefore, we cannot guarantee absolute availability of your Personal Data and recommend that you create additional back-up copy for any Personal Data of particular concern.
10. Security of Your Personal Data. We are committed to protecting the security of your Personal Data. We employ industry–standard physical, electronic, and procedural safeguards to help protect your Personal Data from unauthorized access, use, or disclosure. We also require you to enter a password to access your Account information. Please do not disclose your Account password to unauthorized people. From the time you submit your Login ID and password, communications between your computer and the Company are encrypted using 128- bit Secure Socket Layer (“SSL”) technology to make your information unreadable as it passes over the Internet. While the Company uses these and other reasonable efforts to protect your Personal Data, no method of transmission over the Internet, or method of electronic storage, is 100% secure, however. Therefore, Company cannot guarantee absolute security of your Personal Data.
12. Third Party Security Programs. The Services are certified through McAfee Secure and the Verisign Trusted programs. These are independent organizations that certify website security in order to combat phishing and other Internet scams and build user’s trust and confidence. By clicking on either of the following labels on the home page of our site (www.balancefinancial.com), you may see a daily security verification of our site. No Site is 100% secure, and these programs cannot detect all possible security issues with our Site.
13. Contact Information. We welcome your comments or questions regarding this Privacy and Security Policy. Please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us at the following address or phone number:
Attn: General Counsel
10900 NE 8th St., Ste. 800
Bellevue, WA 98004
14. Change of Control. Personal Data may be transferred to a third party as a result of a sale, acquisition, merger, reorganization or other change of control. If we sell, merge or transfer any part of our business, part of the sale may include the Personal Data that we have for you on our Site. You always retain the choice to stop using the Site before or after any such change of control.
15. Changes to This Privacy and Security Policy. This Privacy and Security Policy is subject to occasional revision, and if we make any material changes in the way we use your Personal Data, we will notify you by sending you an e-mail to the last e-mail address you provided to us and/or by prominently posting notice of the changes on our Site. Any changes to this Privacy and Security Policy will be effective upon the earlier of thirty (30) calendar days following our dispatch of an e-mail notice to you or thirty (30) calendar days following our posting of notice of the changes on our Site. These changes will be effective immediately for new users of our Services. Please note that at all times you are responsible for updating your Personal Data to provide us with your most current e-mail address. In the event that the last e-mail address that you have provided us is not valid, or for any reason is not capable of delivering to you the notice described above, our dispatch of the e-mail containing such notice will nonetheless constitute effective notice of the changes described in the notice. In any event, changes to this Privacy and Security Policy may affect our use of Personal Data that you provided us prior to our notification to you of the changes. If you do not wish to permit changes in our use of your Personal Data, you must notify us prior to the effective date of the changes that you wish to deactivate your Account with us. Continued use of our Site or Service, following notice of such changes shall indicate your acknowledgement of such changes and agreement to be bound by the terms and conditions of such changes.