Last Updated: September 6, 2017
NOTE: THE CHANGE IN THE INTERNATIONAL COLLECTION & CROSS-BORDER TRANSFER OF PERSONAL INFORMATION SECTION. THE SWISS-U.S. PRIVACY SHIELD POLICY HAS BEEN ADDED.
The following explains what personal data is collected by ClearStar, Inc. (“ClearStar”) and how it is used. This includes information provided on a ClearStar Website (“Website”), and information collected from third-parties and other sources associated with ClearStar’s services such as employment, tenant, or occupational health screening.
ClearStar is committed to the responsible use of information and protecting individual privacy rights. ClearStar strives to provide services to mitigate risk, facilitate more informed decisions, and make the world safer, in ways that protect consumer privacy. ClearStar aspires to protect consumer privacy through the design of its processes, by credentialing, monitoring, and/or auditing its clients as appropriate, and through other information security safeguards. ClearStar also strives to promote transparency through appropriate opportunities for consumer choice, access, and correction with respect to personal information about the consumer.
Data Protection Advocate
The ClearStar Data Protection Advocate for the United States and globally is Kerstin Bagus, Director of Global Initiatives.
To request information or receive help with data protection issues, contact ClearStar’s Data Protection Advocate at:
Direct: (770) 416-1900 x872
ClearStar’s Websites may contain links to unrelated third-party websites. ClearStar assumes no responsibility for the content or the privacy policies and practices on those websites. ClearStar encourages all users to read the privacy statements of those sites; their privacy practices may differ from those of ClearStar.
ClearStar is a leading provider of web technology services and risk mitigation and business solutions. ClearStar offers clients a comprehensive portfolio of products, services and tools to help them make informed decisions in a timely manner. ClearStar recognizes that it has an obligation to protect the privacy and confidentiality of PII that it may obtain about individuals through ClearStar’s Websites. Safeguarding the privacy of information ClearStar may receive on its Websites is a top priority for ClearStar, its clients and consumers.
How ClearStar Collects and Use Information on its Websites
ClearStar follows the below privacy principles when you visit its Websites. In general, you can visit a ClearStar Website on the World Wide Web without telling ClearStar who you are or revealing any information about yourself. ClearStar Web servers automatically collect the domain names, not the e-mail addresses, of visitors. This information is used to measure the number of visits, average time spent on the site, pages viewed and similar information. ClearStar uses this information to measure the use of its Website and to develop ideas to improve the content of its Website.
This Website only collects PII from you if you choose to provide this information to ClearStar. PII collected with your consent may include name, mailing address, e-mail address, telephone number, date of birth, credit card number, social security number, driver’s license number, user name and password, any response you provide to survey questions, information relating to any orders you place, or any inquires you may make through our web site. Also, ClearStar may request this type of information if you place an order by mail or telephone.
ClearStar Websites also collect non-personally-identifiable information. For example, as you browse this Website, ClearStar may collect information about your visit, but not about you personally. Via web server logs, for example, ClearStar may monitor statistics such as: the number of people that visit its Website, which page(s) are visited on its Website, from which domain visitors come (e.g., google.com, msn.com, etc.), and which browsers people use to visit this Website (e.g., Google Chrome, Microsoft Internet Explorer, etc.). This Website may use an outsourcing program to assist ClearStar in analyzing this data to better tailor ClearStar Website.
Information Use and Consumer Choice
The information collected by our Websites is used only for responding to your inquiries and otherwise corresponding with you, for processing transactions you request, maintaining your account (if you have one), and for the administration, review and/or improving the content of ClearStar Websites. ClearStar does not share, sell, rent or trade PII with third-parties for their promotional/marketing purposes.
ClearStar may contact you in response to your comments or inquiries, as part of the maintenance of your account with us (if you have one), or in order to complete a transaction that you requested.
ClearStar may also contact you to inform you of other products or services ClearStar believes may be of interest to you, but ClearStar always offer you an opportunity to opt not to receive such communications.
If you decide that you do not want to receive further e-mails regarding your inquiry from ClearStar, you can e-mail ClearStar’s Data Privacy Office at Privacy@ClearStar.net with a request that ClearStar does not continue to e-mail you. ClearStar does not use outside data sources to enrich marketing data obtained online.
ClearStar website users have the option to request that ClearStar not use information previously provided, correct information previously provided, or remove information previously provided to ClearStar. Individuals who would like to correct or suppress information provided to ClearStar should contact the ClearStar Consumer Advocacy Group at Service@ClearStar.net. The inquiries should include the individual’s name, address, and other relevant contact information (phone number, email address), as well as the nature of the request. Except as required by law, ClearStar is free to deny such requests. If ClearStar decides to grant such a request, it will use all reasonable efforts to honor such requests as soon as practicable.
Finally, please note that ClearStar may disclose personal information when required by law or in the good faith belief that such action is necessary in order to conform with the law or to comply with a legal process.
Access and Correction
As an information service company, ClearStar understands the importance of comprehensive data. ClearStar will provide you (whether you are a consumer or a client) with access to PII you provide through our Websites for as long as ClearStar maintains that information in a readily accessible format. Similarly, ClearStar permits and encourages you to correct inaccuracies in the information submitted to ClearStar through this Website.
ClearStar takes steps to protect against the loss, misuse, or unauthorized alteration of PII collected through this Website and otherwise subject to this policy. ClearStar recognizes the importance of security for all PII collected on its Website. Once ClearStar receives PII, ClearStar takes steps to protect its security on its systems. In the event ClearStar requests or transmits sensitive information, such as credit card information or Social Security Numbers through this Website, ClearStar uses industry standard, secure socket layer (SSL) encryption.
ClearStar limits access to PII to those employees or service providers who need access in order to carry out their job responsibilities.
When ClearStar disposes of PII collected through our Websites, ClearStar uses procedures to dispose of personal information by means such as shredding documents and erasure of electronic media that information cannot be practicably read or reconstructed.
How ClearStar Uses and Collects Information in its Businesses
A number of services offered by ClearStar are Consumer Reports (“Consumer Reports”), as the term is defined under the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”), and when providing Consumer Reports to its Clients, ClearStar acts as a Consumer Reporting Agency (“CRA”) as the term is defined under the FCRA, operating in accordance with the requirements of the FCRA. The FCRA establishes the following principles for all CRAs:
Privacy: Information about you may only be furnished to third-parties that have a permissible purpose to request such information. In general, these deal with credit, employment, insurance, rental or banking transactions initiated by you, or where the object is to make a firm offer to you. CRAs must credential their clients to make certain that they have a permissible purpose to receive the requested information.
Access: Consumers may receive a copy of information the CRA maintains about them. Such reports can be obtained nationally free of charge once per 12 months, twice in some states, or for a reasonable fee for additional disclosures. Please contact ClearStar at Service@ClearStar.net or call toll free 1-877-275-7099 if you need more information.
Accuracy: CRAs must follow reasonable procedures to assure accuracy of the information they maintain and/or furnish. When you obtain a copy of your information, you have a right to dispute and have the information reinvestigated and corrected in the CRAs database.
Fairness: Information is obtained from various sources including public records sources. However, certain information over a specified time period may not be reported.
Accountability: The Federal Trade Commission is in charge with overseeing the operations of CRAs that provide consumer reports for employment and residential screening purposes and enforcing the FCRA requirements.
When ClearStar provides Consumer Reports on U.S. residents, it is subject to the FCRA and operates within FCRA framework. If you would like to obtain a report about the information ClearStar maintains about you, please call toll free 1-877-275-7099 or email Service@ClearStar.net.
For credit reports from the credit bureaus, please visit: https://www.annualcreditreport.com/cra/index.jsp.
Privacy Notice: Preparation and Processing of Investigative Consumer Reports
This notice is provided to California residents. Under California law, an “investigative consumer report” is a consumer report containing information on a consumer’s character, general reputation, personal characteristics, or mode of living. ClearStar may provide investigative consumer reports about individuals and in such case, it provides them to business for employment screening, resident screening, and similar purposes.
Personal Information Disclosure: United States or Overseas
In connection with its preparation and processing of consumer reports and investigative consumer reports, ClearStar may transfer personal information about you to ClearStar authorized service providers and affiliates outside the United States and its territories. In such case, the transfer will be conducted in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations.
To obtain additional information about the privacy practices and policies of ClearStar in connection with its preparation and processing of consumer reports, please contact:
Director of Global Initiatives
+1-770-416-1900 ext. 872
For additional information about privacy or consumer reporting, visit the following websites:
California Office of Privacy Protection: www.privacy.ca.gov
Consumer Data Industry Association: www.cdiaonline.org
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: www.consumerfinance.gov
Federal Trade Commission: www.ftc.gov
ClearStar may transfer your personally identifiable information to other countries outside of your home country, including to the United States (“U.S.”), by whatever means is determined to be appropriate in order to perform a background check that you authorized. Your information may also be processed and stored in other countries where ClearStar’s service providers are located. Your information may be subject to U.S. or other laws for disclosure and may be accessible to foreign law enforcement, national security agencies, or courts. Note that the laws regarding personal information in some of the jurisdictions involved may be different or less stringent than the laws of the country in which you reside. Please be aware that ClearStar may be required to disclose an individual’s personal information in response to a lawful request by public authorities, including to meet national security or law enforcement requirements.
ClearStar utilizes a variety of methods to transfer personal information across country borders. This can include consent, contractual methods, and/or regulatory authority certifications. ClearStar maintains appropriate contracts in place with service providers who may view your personal information. In the case of EU and Swiss Personal Data, ClearStar abides by the EU-U.S. and the Swiss-U.S. Privacy Shield Frameworks (“Privacy Shield”) developed by the U.S. Department of Commerce.
CLEARSTAR’S EU & SWITZERLAND PRIVACY STATEMENTS
Director of Global Initiatives
+1-770-416-1900 ext. 872
EU-U.S. & SWISS-U.S. PRIVACY SHIELD POLICY
The EU-U.S. and Swiss–U.S. Privacy Shield Policy applies to personal information ClearStar receives from the European Union and/or Switzerland.
ClearStar processes EU and Swiss Personal Data at the request of clients and other third-parties, and with the written consent of the data subject, for investigative, verification, employment and residential screening related purposes. This includes but is not limited to, identifying information about the data subject, employment and educational history, credit and insolvency reports, driving records, court records, criminal history checks, and other checks contracted by ClearStar’s client or by the data subject themselves. ClearStar uses this information to fulfill background screening requests by customers, which may be employers, other background screening companies, housing providers, and the data subject. ClearStar’s client is required to have obtained written consent from the data subject for this collection. ClearStar maintains written agreements for services with its clients.
The scope of this Notice covers consumer report data that ClearStar has obtained on behalf of employers and other businesses by manually or electronically contacting the appropriate sources of the data (court records, references, licensing bureaus, etc.). ClearStar also performs services related to corporate litigation and investigative services as requested by ClearStar clients.
Information about how ClearStar collects and uses EU and Swiss Personal Data also follows below.
ClearStar gathers consumer and other data which it provides to employers or their agents (such as recruiters or staffing firms) for use in making employment-related decisions, such as who to hire, retain, promote, or re-assign. ClearStar also gathers consumer and other data which it provides to entities including landlords. Note that ClearStar does not engage in any of the decision-making activities for any data subjects. Below is an illustrative list of common ways in which employers use the data provided by this service:
- Performance of applicant and employee background checks
- Verification of the credentials of job applicants and current employees
- Investigation into a suspicion of work-related misconduct or wrongdoing
- Investigation into matters of employee compliance with employer policies, or
- Investigation into matters of employee compliance with Federal, State, or local laws and regulations
ClearStar customers who are processing EU and Swiss Personal Data are contractually required to provide a legally compliant Notice to their data subjects, prior to submitting screening requests to ClearStar.
More information regarding the nature and scope of ClearStar’s data processing is available by contacting ClearStar in writing or by e-mail at the addresses listed on the Contact Us page or by writing to the contact listed below.
The information obtained by ClearStar is only used for the original purpose to which the data subject has consented, unless a new consent is obtained. A data subject may request ClearStar stop the processing of data they had previously consented to by contacting ClearStar directly. In such case, ClearStar will make every attempt to stop the processing as quickly as possible.
3. Accountability for Onward Transfer
ClearStar may disclose EU or Swiss Personal Data to clients, or their agents who enter into a written agreement with ClearStar, in which the client agrees to comply with the FCRA, if applicable. These ClearStar customers are contractually required to provide a legally compliant Notice to their data subjects prior to submitting screening requests to ClearStar.
ClearStar takes reasonable procedures to protect EU and Swiss Personal Data from loss, misuse and unauthorized access, disclosure, alteration and destruction.
5. Data Integrity and Purpose Limitation
The information obtained by ClearStar is only used for the original purpose to which the data subject has consented or the legal grounds for processing allow this access, unless a new consent is obtained or another legal ground for processing has been met. ClearStar processes EU and Swiss Personal Data in ways that are compatible with the purposes for which it has been collected (as identified in the Notice section above) or subsequently authorized by the individual. To the extent necessary for those purposes, ClearStar takes reasonable steps to ensure that EU and Swiss Personal Data collected are comprehensive, complete, current, and reliable for their intended use.
A data subject, whose information is or was processed by ClearStar under the Privacy Shield, has the right to access all personal data collected and maintained about him or her by contacting us directly at Privacy@ClearStar.net. ClearStar affords the data subject a reasonable opportunity to correct, amend, or delete information that is incomprehensive or incomplete, except where the burden or expense of providing access would be disproportionate to the risks to the individual’s privacy, or where the rights of persons other than the individual would be violated. In cases where the information is subject to the Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”), ClearStar complies with the FCRA’s requirements regarding access and correction rights of data subject.
ClearStar reserves the right to engage in reasonable efforts to confirm the identity of the individual requesting their personal data. This is done to ensure the information is provided only to the subject of the data. If we are unable to provide the individual with access to his or her EU or Swiss Personal Data or to correct the data, we will notify the individual. To request information relating to his or her personal data, or to request processing be halted, a data subject may contact ClearStar at:
Director, Global Initiatives
+1-770-416-1900 ext. 872
7. Recourse, Enforcement, and Liability
ClearStar is subject to the investigatory and enforcement powers of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
Director, Global Initiatives
+1-770-416-1900 ext. 872
ClearStar has further committed to refer unresolved privacy complaints under the EU-U.S. and Swiss-U.S. Privacy Shield Principles to an independent dispute resolution mechanism, the BBB EU PRIVACY SHIELD, operated by the Council of Better Business Bureaus. If you do not receive timely acknowledgment of your complaint, or if your complaint is not satisfactorily addressed, please visit http://www.bbb.org/EU-privacy-shield/for-eu-consumers for more information and to file a complaint. ClearStar will cooperate with the EU Data Protection Authorities and the Swiss Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner and will comply with the advice of such authorities with respect to Human Resources data transferred from the European Economic Area and Switzerland in context of the employment relationship.
Please note that if your complaint is not resolved through these channels, under limited circumstances, a binding arbitration option may be available before a Privacy Shield Panel.