Privacy Policy

Our Approach

When you read the privacy policies of most web sites, they read like legal disclaimers about how the company can (ab)use your data. Obviously, we have to explain the legals, but what is most important is that our founders value privacy and we don't want to do the minimum necessary to comply with laws, but actively protect our users and their data.

How do we do this?

We have a range of services that we supply which include collecting data that could identify you as an individual. We try to ask for the minimum information necessary to provide that service. In many cases, like consuming our news and help content, we don't need to know anything about you. In other cases, like if you sign up to our e-mail newsletters, we need to know your e-mail address (and yes we'd like to call you by your first name as well, so we do ask for your name too, but we're not going to check your ID to verify it matches!). We do advise you not to use your real name as username on our site/forums, as this is visible when you comment on news articles or post on our forums.

We ask you for your postcode to deliver you information that is relevant and to map your speed test results, but we don't for example ask for your house number, because this is not necessary to deliver the service.

Information we collect

Here is an outline of the type of personal information we collect for each service, why we collect it, and how we use it:

What we collect

How we use it

General Web Site Use, e.g.:

  • IP Addresses

  • Cookies/browser information

  • Postcode (optional)

IP addresses are the foundation of how the internet routes traffic and are needed to send back the web pages you request; we log this information for diagnostic and statistical purposes. We do not block you from accessing our site through anonymous proxies (although we may restrict content to prevent robots from harvesting it, or from posting spam). We may also ask for your postcode, so that we can better tailor information for you (e.g. we can give you a list of broadband packages that are available to you, rather than packages we know you can't order). We may use other such information for statistical purposes to tailor our site.

Registered User Account

You can register an account on our main site and forums which means you wil need to register a user name, provide an e-mail address, your name/company (optional). We link your services to the account (e.g. speed tests, BQM, etc.) when you are logged in.

Speed Test

We log your speed tests against your user account, if you're logged in. If not, we may log a browser identifier, IP address and other information about the test.

Broadband Quality Monitor (BQM)

We store your IP address which is necessary to provide the service, as well as your ISP details.

E-mail address for updates

We may ask you to provide an e-mail address to which we can send updates, even if you do not have an account on our systems.

Advertising

We serve advertising using a number of common industry platforms including Google DFP/Adsense. They may use cookies and other technologies which interact directly with your browser. When you click on a link, you will be redirected to an advertiser's site. We do not share personal information you supply to us (e.g. your e-mail address) with any advertisers, but to serve you an ad, your web browser may disclose information such as your IP address to advertisers when requesting an advert. Information on how you can choose your settings can be found below.

Affiliate Links

Some of our links to companies which provide good/services may be 'affiliate' links which pay us when you sign up and buy something; when you click on a link you will be directed to the supplier's site and be subject to their privacy policies. We do not share any personal data with such companies.

We may use the data to notify you of any changes to our service, to respond to queries you make, to deliver the service on our site, to keep the site safe and secure, to measure and understand the effectiveness of our site or advertising on it, to improve our site or understand how to present it best to you, to comply with any legal obligation of any kind, to protect the vital interests of any natural person, or to perform tasks carried out in the public interest.

In most cases, we will use data supplied by you, and in a manner which you would expect (i.e. to help us provide the service), so this means our lawful basis for processing is legitimate interest.

How we share data

We do not sell or share our user data (e.g. e-mail addresses) to/with any third parties for marketing purposes. We may use external companies to deliver some services for us. For example, we use Google Analytics to understand our website's user flows, we use Google Adsense and other advertising networks to deliver advertising, and we may use third parties to deliver e-mails on our behalf when you've subscribed to something. Where we do so, we will only provide the information necessary to provide the service and within the same privacy framework (i.e. they they may only use this data to deliver the service on our behalf).

We do share statistical data on broadband speeds, availability, take-up, etc. with third parties (n.b. most of this is freely accessible on our website, for example on labs.thinkbroadband.com/local), but we will not share data which personally identifies you.

We may share your personal data if it is to protect your vital interests, or if we are required to by law or to enforce our terms and conditions, or if our business assets are sold/transferred (in doing so they will be used in conformance with this policy).

General Policy

thinkbroadband is committed to protecting and respecting your privacy and to using technology to enhance your online security. The information that you provide us with, or that is gathered automatically helps us to monitor our service and provide you with the services that you have subscribed to or access on our site.

We do not share subscriber information with third parties without your prior consent other than in cases of investigating or reporting abuse.

We will only use the information that we collect about you lawfully and in accordance with the data protection legislation.

Posting personal information to public areas

Please bear in mind that any personal information that you submit through forums, comments on news articles, etc. are published on our site and may be collected by others. If you are unsure about how any information you submit is used, please e-mail [email protected] before submitting anything and we can clarify.

E-mail

We may send e-mails to users who have registered with us, and we use this and other information you provide for demographic purposes. We do not give our user list out to other parties and we only e-mail registered users. We do not approve of unsolicited e-mail and do not believe e-mailing users against their wishes is respectable. To that end we keep all e-mails to a minimum, unless a regular update is specifically and explicitly requested by the user. You can remove yourself from all our lists automatically by following instructions at our unsubscribe page (if you are having difficulty, drop us an e-mail). To cancel your forum account, please contact us and we'll sort it out.

We request that any information you provide us is kept up-to-date so that if you fill in any of our surveys, we may contact you to gather more information.

Registration

Our site allows (but does not require) you to register with us if you wish to use some extended features which you may find useful. This also gives members more credibility when communicating on the message boards. Registration only requires an e-mail address, but you may provide an additional address which can be shown to anyone viewing your posts. This ‘public’ e-mail address on forums is optional and your ‘private’ e-mail address is not shown to users other then thinkbroadband staff and volunteers.

Cookies & IP Addresses

Virtually all websites use cookies which are small files stored on your computer when you visit a site. The data stored in them is used to enable features on a site, such as keeping you logged in, or remembering your preferences. Please visit our cookies page find out more information our cookie policy.We may use cookies that are necessary for the operation of our site, analytics/performance cookies tghat help us understand how many of our visitors are new and what they are doing on the site, and functional cookies that allow us to manage login systems, etc.

Surveys

On occasion we may conduct online surveys. This is used to gauge our service, collect demographic information and other information that we may find useful. These surveys are optional. We may share non-personal, aggregated information with third parties. We may cross-analyse survey responses between various surveys and use answers to tailor your experience on the site (e.g. if you tell us that you are concerned about broadband quality, we may provide suggestions in future about how to measure and track broadband quality on our site). We will not share any such categorisation information with third parties.

Security

The personal information which we hold will be held securely in accordance with our internal security policy and the law. While we strive to keep the information that you supply directly or indirectly secure please be aware that the Internet is not a fully secure medium.

We ask for the minimum amount of data to provide the services we offer, so for example we may ask for your postcode, but not your house/flat number, since for the services we offer, postcode-level information is adequate to give you information about broadband services in your area, and we do not wish to store unnecessary data.

Competitions

From time to time we operate competitions and promotions. Participation in these is optional. Be sure to check individual competition rules for any conditions that may apply.

Usage of Information

We may co-operate with any local or national government or law enforcement authorities at their request and provide any information we hold. We also reserve the right to provide such information to third parties on receipt of appropriate documentation of their intention to issue legal proceedings against a user.

Advertising

We use the services of a number of third party agencies including Google AdSense and affiliate marketing companies. When you view an advert, your browser will make a connection to such ad servers which may have their own policies; you can control settings through your browser and/or via advertising network opt-out page.

We do manually block advertisers who design ads to appear in a way that implies they are part of our website however we do not routinely approve individual adverts. If you see an advert that concerns you, please do not hesitate to e-mail us with a screenshot and a capture of the URL the ad links to. This maximises the chances we can block it. We also strongly advise you to contact us if you see malware or similar content served from our site (but do check you do not have viruses/trojans which may cause these too). We do recommend you have Anti-virus software (yes—even if you use a Mac!)

You can opt out of online behavioural advertising for many companies via Your Choices Online (note this affects advertising across many networks and not limited to our website, nor does it guarantee that all ad networks are listed).

You can opt out of Google Adsense personalisation here (this applies to all Adsense ads across the Internet)

You can opt out of Google Analytics using a browser add-on (available for Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Apple Safari, and Opera) and using this site.

Links to other websites

This website may contain links to other websites. We do not share your personal information with those websites and are not responsible for their privacy practices. We encourage you to learn about the privacy policies of those companies. Accordingly, this privacy statement and policy apply only to this website and not to linked websites (other than those operated by us as separate sites, if they link to this policy).

Governing Law

Any dispute over privacy is subject to this Privacy Statement and the laws of England and Wales.

Policy Changes

By using our site you agree to accept this privacy policy and are aware that our policy may change with time. Any changes to this policy will appear on this web page. If you have any questions, please contact us.

Who we are

thinkbroadband® is a trading name of NetConnex Ltd. Registered in England (No: 3416805) at 5 Fleet Place, London. EC4M 7RD. VAT 797995328. This address is provided for legal purposes only. Please do not send press releases, marketing materials, invitations or any general business correspondence to this address or add it to any mailing list as any such material sent to this address will be discarded on receipt. Data Protection registration number Z9551528. For privacy queries - please e-mail [email protected]

Updated 22/05/2018