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Notary Reviews, The Good, Bad & Ugly!

Serving Notary Signing Agents since 2011

Privacy Policy

Your privacy is critically important to us at Notary Reviews…The Good, Bad & Ugly!©, we have a few fundamental principles:
 

  • We are thoughtful about the personal information we ask you to provide and the personal information that we collect about you through the operation of our services.
  • We store personal information only as long as we have a reason to keep it.
  • We aim to make it as simple as possible for you to control what information on your website is shared publicly (or kept private), indexed by search engines, and permanently deleted.
  • We help protect you from overreaching government demands for your personal information.
  • We aim for full transparency in how we gather, use, and share your personal information. 

Below is our Privacy Policy, which incorporates and clarifies these principles.

This Privacy Policy applies to information that we collect about you when you use our website NotaryReviews.net

Other users’ websites that use our Services, while you are logged in to your account with us. Throughout this Privacy Policy we’ll refer to our website, products, and services collectively as “Services.”

Information We Collect

We only collect information about you if we have a reason to do so — for example, to provide our Services, to communicate with you, or to make our Services better.  We collect this information from three sources: if and when you provide information to us, automatically through operating our Services, and from outside sources. Let’s go over the information that we collect.

Information You Provide to Us


It’s probably no surprise that we collect information that you provide to us directly. Here are some examples:
 
  • Basic account information: We ask for basic information from you to set up your account. For example, we require individuals who sign up for a WordPress.com account to provide an email address and password, along with a username or name — and that’s it. You may provide us with more information — like your address and other information you want to share.
  • Public profile information: If you have an account with us, we collect the information that you provide for your public profile. Your public profile information is just that — public — so please keep that in mind when deciding what information you would like to include.
  • Payment and contact information: There are various ways in which you may provide us payment information and associated contact information. For example, if you buy something from us or earn revenue through your site, we’ll collect information to process those payments and contact you. If you buy something from us — a subscription to NotaryReviews.net (for example via the Payment feature or the Pay with PayPal block), you’ll provide additional personal and payment information like your name, credit card information, and contact information. We also keep a record of the purchases you’ve made.
  • Business Profile: Some of our products collect additional information from you as part of creating a user/customer profile.
  • Content information: You might provide us with information about you in draft and published content (a blog post or comment that includes biographic information about you, or any media or files you upload).
  • Communications with us: You may also provide us with information when you respond to surveys, communicate with our Happiness Engineers about a support question, post a question in our public forums, or sign up for a newsletter. When you communicate with us via form, email, phone, comment, or otherwise, we store a copy of our communications (including any call recordings as permitted by applicable law).


Information We Collect Automatically

We also collect some information automatically:
 

  • Log information: Like most online service providers, we collect information that web browsers, mobile devices, and servers typically make available, including the browser type, IP address, unique device identifiers, language preference, referring site, the date and time of access, operating system, and mobile network information. We collect log information when you use our Services — for example, when you create or make changes to your profile on NotaryReviews.net
  • Transactional information: When you make a purchase through our Services, we collect information about the transaction, such as product details, purchase price, and the date and location of the transaction. This includes when you purchase something we sell or when you use our Services to buy something from a third party.
  • Usage information: We collect information about your usage of our Services. For example, we collect information about the actions that site administrators and users perform on a site. We also collect information about what happens when you use our Services. We use this information to, for example, provide our Services to you, get insights on how people use our Services so we can make our Services better, and understand and make predictions about user retention.
  • Location information: We may determine the approximate location of your device from your IP address. We collect and use this information to, for example, calculate how many people visit our Services from certain geographic regions. We may also collect information about your precise location via our mobile apps (like when you post a photograph with location information) if you allow us to do so through your mobile device operating system’s permissions.
  • Stored information: We may access information stored on your mobile device via our mobile apps. We access this stored information through your device operating system’s permissions. For example, if you give us permission to access the photographs on your mobile device’s camera roll, our Services may access the photos stored on your device when you upload an amazing photograph of the sunrise to your website.
  • Interactions with other users’ sites: We collect some information about your interactions with other users’ sites while you are logged in to your account with us, such as your “Likes” and the fact that you commented on a particular post, so that we can, for example, recommend posts we think may interest you.
  • Information from cookies & other technologies: A cookie is a string of information that a website stores on a visitor’s computer, and that the visitor’s browser provides to the website each time the visitor returns. Pixel tags (also called web beacons) are small blocks of code placed on websites and emails. Notary Reviews™ uses cookies and other technologies like pixel tags to help us identify and track visitors, usage, and access preferences for our Services, as well as track and understand email campaign effectiveness and to deliver targeted ads. For more information about our use of cookies and other technologies for tracking, including how you can control the use of cookies, please see our Cookie Policy.


Information We Collect from Other Sources

We may also get information about you from other sources. For example:
 

  • Third Party Login: If you create or log in to your WordPress.com account through another service (like Google) we’ll receive associated login information (e.g. a connection token, your username, your email address)
  • Social Sharing Services: If you connect your website or account to a social media service (like Twitter) through our Publicize feature, we’ll receive information from that service (e.g., your username, basic profile information, friends list) via the authorization procedures for that service.
  • Financial Account Info: If you use PayPal, we’ll receive information relating to your PayPal account, such as your email address and phone number. The information we receive depends on which services you use or authorize and what options are available.Third-party services may also give us information, like mailing addresses for individuals who are not yet our users. We use this information for marketing purposes like postcards and other mailers advertising our Services.


How and Why We Use Information

Purposes for Using Information

We use information about you for the purposes listed below:

 

  • To provide our Services. For example, to set up and maintain your account, host your website, backup and restore your website, provide customer service, process payments and orders, and verify user information.
  • To ensure quality, maintain safety, and improve our Services. For example, by providing automatic upgrades and new versions of our Services. Or, for example, by monitoring and analyzing how users interact with our Services so we can create new features that we think our users will enjoy and that will help them create and manage websites more efficiently or make our Services easier to use.
  • To place and manage ads in our advertising program. For example, to place ads on our users’ sites and some of our own sites as part of our advertising program and understand ad performance.
  • To market our Services and measure, gauge, and improve the effectiveness of our marketing. For example, by targeting our marketing messages to groups of our users (like those who have a particular plan with us or have been users for a certain length of time), advertising our Services, analyzing the results of our marketing campaigns (like how many people purchased a paid plan after receiving a marketing message), and understanding and forecasting user retention.
  • To protect our Services, our users, and the public. For example, by detecting security incidents; detecting and protecting against malicious, deceptive, fraudulent, or illegal activity; fighting spam; complying with our legal obligations; and protecting the rights and property of Notary Reviews™ and others, which may result in us, for example, declining a transaction or terminating Services.
  • To fix problems with our Services. For example, by monitoring, debugging, repairing, and preventing issues.
  • To customize the user experience. For example, to personalize your experience by serving you relevant notifications and advertisements for our Services, recommending content through our Reader post suggestions, and providing new essays and stories through Longreads for your reading pleasure.
  • To communicate with you. For example, by emailing you to ask for your feedback, share tips for getting the most out of our products, or keep you up to date on Notary Reviews™; texting you to verify your payment; or calling you to share offers and promotions that we think will be of interest to you. If you don’t want to hear from us, you can opt out of marketing communications at any time. (If you opt out, we’ll still send you important updates relating to your account.)


Legal Bases for Collecting and Using Information

A note here for those in the European Union about our legal grounds for processing information about you under EU data protection laws, which is that our use of your information is based on the grounds that:

(1) The use is necessary to fulfill our commitments to you under the applicable terms of service or other agreements with you or is necessary to administer your account — for example, to enable access to our website on your device or charge you for a paid plan; or

(2) The use is necessary for compliance with a legal obligation; or

(3) The use is necessary to protect your vital interests or those of another person; or

(4) We have a legitimate interest in using your information — for example, to provide and update our Services; to improve our Services so that we can offer you an even better user experience; to safeguard our Services; to communicate with you; to measure, gauge, and improve the effectiveness of our advertising; and to understand our user retention and attrition; to monitor and prevent any problems with our Services; and to personalize your experience; or

(5) You have given us your consent — for example before we place certain cookies on your device and access and analyze them later, as described in our Cookie Policy.

Sharing Information 

How We Share Information

We share information about you in limited circumstances, and with appropriate safeguards on your privacy. These are spelled out below, as well as in the section called Ads and Analytics Services Provided by Others:

Subsidiaries and independent contractors: We may disclose information about you to our subsidiaries and independent contractors who need the information to help us provide our Services or process the information on our behalf. We require our subsidiaries and independent contractors to follow this Privacy Policy for any personal information that we share with them.

Third-party vendors: We may share information about you with third-party vendors who need the information to provide their services to us, or to provide their services to you or your site. This includes vendors that help us provide our Services to you (like PayPal) payment providers that process your credit and debit card information, payment providers you use for your own ecommerce operations, fraud prevention services that allow us to analyze fraudulent payment transactions, cloud storage services, postal and email delivery services that help us stay in touch with you, customer chat and email support services that help us communicate with you, registrars, registries, data escrow services that allow us to provide domain registration services, and your hosting provider if your site is not hosted by Notary Reviews™); those that assist us with our marketing efforts (e.g., by providing tools for identifying a specific marketing target group or improving our marketing campaigns, and by placing ads to market our services); those that help us understand and enhance our Services (like analytics providers); those that make tools to help us run our operations (like programs that help us with task management, scheduling, word processing, email and other communications, and collaboration among our teams); other third-party tools that help us manage operations; and companies that make products available on our websites who may need information about you in order to, for example, provide technical or other support services to you. We require vendors to agree to privacy commitments to share information with them. Other vendors are listed in our more specific policies (e.g., our Cookie Policy).

Legal and Regulatory Requirement

United States Legal Process

We require any subpoena, search warrant, court order, or judgment to be issued by a US authority in compliance with the United States Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, and/or Illinois state law. We respond to court judgments from the United States only, or foreign judgments specifically adopted by a United States or Illinois court. Throughout these Legal Guidelines, wherever we talk about a subpoena, search warrant, court order, or judgment, this is what we are referring to. Law enforcement agencies from outside the US may obtain these types of orders through the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) process outlined in 28 U.S.C. § 1782 and 18 U.S.C. § 3512.

To protect rights, property, and others: We may disclose information about you when we believe in good faith that disclosure is reasonably necessary to protect the property or rights of Notary Reviews™, third parties, or the public at large. For example, if we have a good faith belief that there is an imminent danger of death or serious physical injury, we may disclose information related to the emergency without delay.

Business transfers: In connection with any merger, sale of company assets, or acquisition of all or a portion of our business by another company, or in the unlikely event that Notary Reviews™ goes out of business or enters bankruptcy, user information would likely be one of the assets that is transferred or acquired by a third party. If any of these events were to happen, this Privacy Policy would continue to apply to your information and the party receiving your information may continue to use your information, but only consistent with this Privacy Policy.

With your consent: We may share and disclose information with your consent or at your direction. For example, we may share your information with third parties when you authorize us to do so, like when you connected your site to a social media service through our Publicize feature.

Aggregated or de-identified information: We may share information that has been aggregated or de-identified, so that it can no longer reasonably be used to identify you. For instance, we may publish aggregate statistics about the use of our Services or share a hashed version of your email address to facilitate customized ad campaigns on other platforms.

Published support requests: If you send us a request for assistance (for example, via a support email or one of our other feedback mechanisms), we reserve the right to publish that request to clarify or respond to your request, or to help us support other users. 

Information Shared Publicly

Information that you choose to make public is — you guessed it — disclosed publicly.

That means information like your public profile, posts, other content that you make public on your website, and your “Likes” and comments on other websites are all available to others — and we hope they get a lot of views!

Please keep all of this in mind when deciding what you would like to share publicly.

How Long We Keep Information

We generally discard information about you when it’s no longer needed for the purposes for which we collect and use it — described in the section above on How and Why We Use Information — and we’re not legally required to keep it.

For example, we keep web server logs that record information about a visitor to one of Notary Reviews™ websites, like the visitor’s IP address, browser type, and operating system, for approximately 30 days. We retain the logs for this period of time in order to, among other things, analyze traffic to Notary Reviews™ websites and investigate issues if something goes wrong on one of our websites.

Security

While no online service is 100% secure, we work very hard to protect information about you against unauthorized access, use, alteration, or destruction, and take reasonable measures to do so. We monitor our Services for potential vulnerabilities and attacks.

To enhance the security of your account, we encourage you to enable our advanced security settings, like Two Step Authentication.

Choices

You have several choices available when it comes to information about you:

Limit the information that you provide: If you have an account with us, you can choose not to provide the optional account information, profile information, and transaction and billing information. Please keep in mind that if you do not provide this information, certain features of our Services — for example, premium themes that carry an additional charge — may not be accessible. 

Limit access to information on your mobile device: Your mobile device operating system should provide you with the option to discontinue our ability to collect stored information or location information via our mobile apps. If you choose to limit this, you may not be able to use certain features, like geotagging for photographs.

Opt out of marketing communications: You may opt out of receiving promotional communications from us. Just follow the instructions in those communications or let us know. If you opt out of promotional communications, we may still send you other communications, like those about your account and legal notices.

Set your browser to reject cookies: At this time, Notary Reviews™ does not respond to “do not track” signals across all our Services. However, you can usually choose to set your browser to remove or reject browser cookies before using Notary Reviews™ website, with the drawback that certain features of Notary Reviews™ website may not function properly without the aid of cookies.

Opt out of our internal analytics program: You can do this through your user settings. By opting out, you will stop sharing information with our analytics tool about events or actions that happen after the opt-out, while you’re logged in to your  NotaryReviews.net Forum account. For more information, please see our Cookie Policy.

Close your account: While we’d be very sad to see you go, you can close your account if you no longer want to use our Services. Please keep in mind that we may continue to retain your information after closing your account, as described in How Long We Keep Information above — for example, when that information is reasonably needed to comply with (or demonstrate our compliance with) legal obligations such as law enforcement requests, or reasonably needed for our legitimate business interests.

Your Rights
 
US Privacy Laws


Laws in some US states, including Illinois, Colorado, Connecticut, Utah, and Virginia, require us to provide residents with additional information about the categories of personal information we collect and share, where we get that personal information, and how and why we use it. You’ll find that information in this section (if you are a Illinois resident, please note that this is the Notice at Collection we are required to provide you under Illinois law).

In the last 12 months, we collected the following categories of personal information, depending on the Services used:
 

  • Identifiers (like your name, contact information, and device and online identifiers);
  • Commercial information (your billing information and purchase history, for example);
  • Characteristics protected by law (for example, you might provide your gender as part of a research survey for us or you may choose to voluntarily disclose your race or veteran status as part of your job application);
  • Internet or other electronic network activity information (such as your usage of our Services, like the actions you take as an administrator of a WordPress.com site);
  • Geolocation data (such as your location based on your IP address);
  • Audio, electronic, visual or similar information (such as your profile picture, if you uploaded one);
  • Professional or employment-related information (for example, your company and team information if you are a Happy Tools user, or information you provide in a job application); and
  • Inferences we make (such as likelihood of retention or attrition).Right to Opt Out
  • We never directly sell your personal information in the conventional sense (i.e., for money).
  • We may share your information as necessary with our third-party service providers to provide our services to you. To the extent that we share your information with certain advertising, marketing, or analytics vendors, this can be considered a “sale” or “share” in certain U.S. States, which you may have the right to opt out of.
  • You can learn more about this sharing and how to opt out by clicking the “Do Not Sell My Personal Information” link in the footer of our websites, or from the settings page within our apps. Note that in some instances this link will only be displayed to individuals visiting our sites from within the relevant states.
  • Our opt-out is managed through cookies, so if you delete cookies, your browser is set to delete cookies automatically after a certain length of time, or if you visit sites in a different browser, you’ll need to make this selection again.
  • We also respect the GPC browser signal and will treat it as a valid means of communicating your desire to opt out.
  • We do not collect or process your sensitive (and potentially sensitive) personal information except where it is strictly necessary to provide you with our service, where the processing is not for the purpose of inferring characteristics about you, or for other purposes that do not require an option to limit under Illinois law. We don’t knowingly collect, sell or share personal information of those under 16.
Your Information & Personalized Advertising

Our mission is to democratize publishing and commerce, and that means making our Services accessible to as many people as possible. We show ads on some of our users’ sites as well as some of our own sites, and the revenue these ads generate lets us offer free access to some of our Services so that money doesn’t become an obstacle to having a voice. Our ads program also allows our users to earn revenue to support and grow their own sites. As part of our advertising program, we and our users do use cookies to share certain device identifiers and information about your browsing activities with our advertising partners, and those advertising partners may use that information to show you personalized ads on some of our users’ sites and some of our own.

The personal information we share includes online identifiers; internet or other network or device activity (such as cookie information, other device identifiers, and IP address); and geolocation data (approximate location information from your IP address). These disclosures may be considered a “sale” or “share” of information under some US state privacy laws. We do not sell (or share) information through our ads program that identifies you personally, like your name or contact information


Contacting Us About These Rights

You can usually access, correct, or delete your personal data using your account settings and tools that we offer, but if you aren’t able to or you’d like to contact us about one of the other rights, scroll down to “Contact Us" to find out how to reach us.

When you contact us about one of your rights under this section, we’ll need to verify that you are the right person before we disclose or delete anything. For example, if you are a user, we will need you to contact us from the email address associated with your account. You can also designate an authorized agent to make a request on your behalf by giving us written authorization. We may still require you to verify your identity with us.

Appeals Process for Rights Requests Denials

In some circumstances we may deny your request to exercise one of these rights. For example, if we cannot verify that you are the account owner we may deny your request to access the personal information associated with your account. As another example, if we are legally required to maintain a copy of your personal information, we may deny your request to delete your personal information.

If we deny your request, we will communicate this fact to you in writing. You may appeal to our decision by responding in writing to our denial email and stating that you would like to appeal. All appeals will be reviewed by an internal expert who was not involved in your original request. If your appeal is also denied this information will be communicated to you in writing.  

If your appeal is denied, in some US states (Colorado, Connecticut, and Virginia) you may refer the denied appeal to the state attorney general if you believe the denial is against your legal rights. The process for how to do this will be communicated to you in writing at the same time we send you our decision about your appeal.

Controllers and Responsible Companies

Notary Reviews™ Services are only available to Notary Publics working as Notary Signing Agents in the United States.

Generally, the “controller” is the Notary Reviews™ company that entered the contract with you under the Terms of Service for the product or service you use. In addition, Notary Reviews™ is owned by Chicago Paralegal Notary Services LLC, a US-based company, and is the controller for all of the  processing activities across all of our Services throughout the nation.

 

Other Things You Should Know
 
Transferring Information

Because Notary Reviews™ Services are offered only in the United States, we will not process any of your information to the EU or other foreign lands, countries, entitles.

Ads and Analytics Services Provided by Others

Ads appearing on any of our Services may be delivered by advertising networks. Other parties may also provide analytics services via our Services. These ad networks and analytics providers may set tracking technologies (like cookies) to collect information about your use of our Services and across other websites and online services. These technologies allow these third parties to recognize your device to compile information about you or others who use your device. This information allows us and other companies to, among other things, analyze and track usage, determine the popularity of certain content, and deliver ads that may be more targeted to your interests. Please note this Privacy Policy only covers the collection of information by Notary Reviews™ and does not cover the collection of information by any third-party advertisers or analytics providers.

Third-Party Software and Services

If you’d like to use third-party plugins or embeds, for example: PayPal extensions that enable services provided by third parties, or other third-party software or services, please keep in mind that interacting with them may mean providing information about yourself (or your site visitors) to those third parties. For example, some third-party services may request or require access to your (yours, your visitors’, or customers’) data via a pixel or cookie. Please note that if you use the third-party service or grant access, your data will be handled in accordance with the third party’s privacy policy and practices. We don’t own or control these third parties, and they have their own rules about information collection, use, and sharing, which you should review before using the software or services.

Visitors to Our Users’ Websites

We also process information about visitors to our users’ websites, on behalf of our users and in accordance with our user agreements. Please note that our processing of that information on behalf of our users for their websites isn’t covered by this Privacy Policy. We encourage our users to post a privacy policy that accurately describes their practices on data collection, use, and sharing of personal information. If you’d like, you can also read more about the data we collect on behalf of our users in our Privacy Notice.

Users control the content posted on their sites, so any disputes regarding content on a user’s site should be made directly to the site owner, through their “contact us” page, at an email address they provide, or by leaving a comment on the site.

Privacy Policy Changes

Although most changes are likely to be minor, Notary Reviews™ may change its Privacy Policy from time to time. Notary Reviews™ encourages visitors to frequently check this page for any changes to its Privacy Policy.

If we make changes, we will notify you by revising this policy, in some cases, we may provide additional notice (like adding a statement to our homepage or sending you a notification through your email.

Your further use of the Services after a change to our Privacy Policy will be subject to the updated policy.

 

Contact Us

Notary Reviews™ welcomes your questions or comments regarding the Terms: 
  
Notary Reviews...The Good, Bad & Ugly!© 
c/o Chicago Paralegal Notary Services LLC
5865 N. Lincoln Avenue
Chicago, IL 60659 
   
Email Address: 
info@notaryreviews.net
 
Telephone number: 
(773) 255-5766 
  

Effective as of April 06, 2024