This Policy covers this website and any other websites, mobile sites, contests, promotions, events, sweepstakes, applications, widgets and other content and services that link directly to this Policy (collectively, the “Site”).
PLEASE READ THIS POLICY CAREFULLY TO UNDERSTAND OUR PRACTICES REGARDING YOUR INFORMATION. WHEN YOU ACCESS OUR SITE OR SUBMIT ANY PERSONAL INFORMATION TO US BY ANY MEANS, YOUR INFORMATION WILL BE MANAGED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THIS POLICY. IF YOU DO NOT AGREE WITH OUR POLICIES AND PRACTICES, YOUR CHOICE IS NOT TO USE OUR SITE. BY ACCESSING OR USING THIS SITE, YOU CONSENT TO THIS POLICY. OUR POLICY MAY CHANGE FROM TIME TO TIME. YOUR CONTINUED USE OF THIS WEBSITE AFTER WE MAKE CHANGES IS DEEMED TO BE ACCEPTANCE OF THOSE CHANGES, SO PLEASE CHECK THE POLICY PERIODICALLY FOR UPDATES. TO UNDERSTAND CONSENT AND YOUR CHOICES REGARDING YOUR INFORMATION, SEE SECTION 8 BELOW FOR MORE DETAILS.
WE DO NOT KNOWINGLY RETAIN PERSONAL INFORMATION ABOUT ANY INDIVIDUAL UNDER THE AGE OF 16 AND OUR POLICY DOES NOT PERMIT PROVIDING SERVICES TO ANY INDIVIDUAL UNDER THE AGE OF 18. IF YOU ARE LESS THAN THE AGE OF 16 IN THE PROVINCE OR TERRITORY IN WHICH YOU RESIDE, YOUR PARENT OR LEGAL GUARDIAN MUST REVIEW THIS POLICY AND CONSENT TO THIS POLICY ON YOUR BEHALF. IF WE LEARN WE HAVE UNKNOWINGLY COLLECTED OR RECEIVED PERSONAL INFORMATION FROM AN INDIVIDUAL UNDER THE AGE OF 16, AND WITHOUT VERIFICATION OF PARENTAL OR LEGAL GUARDIAN CONSENT, WE WILL DELETE THAT INFORMATION FROM OUR RECORDS OR, IF THAT IS NOT POSSIBLE, WE WILL TAKE REASONABLE STEPS TO DE-IDENTIFY THE INFORMATION. IF YOU BELIEVE WE MIGHT HAVE ANY INFORMATION FROM OR ABOUT AN INDIVIDUAL UNDER THE AGE OF 16, PLEASE CONTACT US AT PRIVACY@DIRECTENERGY.COM.
- SCOPE AND APPLICABILITY
This Policy applies to any personal information we receive, maintain or collect from individuals who visit our Site or use our services except personal information that is subject to our policies regarding Personal Information of employees, unless the employee is also a customer. The Policy applies only to our activities that are subject to the provisions of Canada’s federal and provincial privacy legislation.
Our Policy applies to information we collect:
- on this Site;
- in email, text, and other electronic messages between you and this Site;
- through mobile and desktop applications you download from this Site;
- when you interact with our advertising and applications on third-party websites and services, if those applications or advertising include links to this Policy.
Our Policy does not apply to information collected by:
- third-party linked websites.
- INFORMATION WE COLLECT ABOUT YOU AND HOW WE COLLECT IT
- What information is collected?
We collect several types of information from users of our Site, including personal information and business contact information.
“Personal Information” means identifiable information about an individual that, by itself or in conjunction with other information, may be used to specifically identify or contact you or others you voluntarily refer to us, but does not include Business Contact Information.
“Business Contact Information” means any information that is used for the purpose of communicating or facilitating communication with an individual in relation to their employment, business or profession such as the individual’s name, position name or title, work address, or work telephone number.
We collect, use and maintain different types of personal information about individuals with whom we interact. Personal Information includes but is not limited to:
- contact and identification information, such as name, address, home telephone number and personal email address;
- product and service-related information, including account information or energy usage information;
- information that you provide to us directly, by completing surveys, entering contests or providing comments;
- credit and financial information, such as billing and credit history or payment history;
- customer relationship information, such as customer service requests, voicemail recordings of customer service calls, or account history;
- information that is publicly available about the individual.
We may also collect and use personal information you have provided to our subsidiaries, affiliates, business partners and/or businesses related to us for purposes set out herein.
- How is personal information collected?
- General Collection.We collect information:
- Directly from you when you provide it to us, including personal information;
- product and service-related information, including account information or energy usage information;
- When you access or use our services or devices;
- Automatically as you navigate through the Site (See Automatic Data Collection Tools in Section C below);
- From third parties or publicly available sources (e.g. from social media services, forums, commercially available services, etc.)
- Social Media Services.If you access or log-in to the Site through a social media service or another website, app, service or log-in (“Other Service“), the information we collect may also include your user ID and/or user name associated with that Other Service, any information or content you have permitted the Other Service to share with us, such as your profile picture, email address or friends’ lists, and any information you have made public in connection with that Other Service (collectively, “Social Media Content“). When you access our Site through Other Services, you are authorizing us to collect, store, and use any and all Social Media Content in accordance with this Policy. We may also share information that we collect about you with Other Services with whom we partner with or advertise on.
- Customer Contributions.We may provide you the ability to submit reviews, comment on or rate goods, products and services on our Site (collectively, “Customer Content“). Any information you provide may be published on our Site. You should not include any information that you do not want to share with the general public, including personal information.
- Automatic Data Collection Tools
When you visit our Site, we automatically collect your internet service provider’s address, the web page from which you came, and a record of your activity on our Site. We do this using cookies, log files and web beacons (“automatic data collection tools” or “data collection technologies”).
We also allow certain trusted third-party providers to utilize cookies to analyze how users use our websites. We may use “session cookies” (cookies that last until you close your browser) or “persistent cookies” (cookies that last until you or your browser deletes them). If you are concerned about cookies, most browsers permit individuals to opt out of cookies by visiting the browser’s settings or http://youradchoices.ca/choices/ . However, if you buy a new computer, change web browsers or delete these opt-out cookies, you may need to perform the opt-out task again. If you refuse a cookie, you may not be able to use some of the features available on our website or may need to re-enter previously entered information or selected preferences on our website.
Web Beacon. To gather Site visitor statistics and to analyze Site usage in order to improve the quality of advertisements and other functionality, we use code called a “pixel tag” or “web beacon.” This information is tracked on the third-party tracking tools’ servers and reported in aggregate to our webmasters. If you are concerned about the use of web beacons, you can render them ineffective by either opting out of cookies or by changing the cookie settings in your browser. This action will prevent web beacons from tracking your specific activity, but the web beacon may still record information regarding your server, such as an anonymous visit from your IP address.
- WHY WE COLLECT YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
We and service providers acting on our behalf collect, use, and disclose personal information about you for the following purposes:
- Delivery of Products or Services
- Verifying credit worthiness by obtaining your credit score;
- Processing transactions you carry out through our Site.
- Customer Relations
- Establishing, managing and terminating business relations with you;
- Informing you of products and services we, or trusted third parties, may wish to offer you, other than those that you have specifically requested;
- Enabling participation in programs such as Refer-A-Friend promotions, general promotions, sweepstakes, contests, games, special events, blogs and chats;
- Reviewing the effectiveness of the products and services that we provide to you;
- Providing you with special promotions or services;
- Answering customer requests or questions;
- Improving and customizing the content of our Site.
- Protecting Our Business and Fulfilling Our Legal Obligations
- Protecting us against error, fraud, theft and damage to our goods and property;
- Complying with applicable law or regulatory requirements;
- Cooperating with government authorities, including the police, pursuant to a legal matter.
- Creating aggregated or analytic information that we do not use to individually identify you;
- Tracking and analyzing our business trends and patterns for market research related purposes;
- Providing this information to third parties
We may also use personally identifiable usage information collected from our devices, such as in-home thermostats, smart meters or similar devices, to provide you with feedback about your energy use, your security and home automation system and controls, to help you set energy goals/budgets and track your progress, and to provide you customized content (such as tips and recommendations for reducing energy usage, home security tips, home automation advice, trend monitoring, energy analytics, etc.) and other purposes similar to the foregoing. We may also use usage information for customer support, system restoration, and research and development activities for new products and services, and other similar purposes. Finally, we may provide certain usage information to selected third parties, such as our business partners, for marketing purposes, where we have obtained your specific consent.
In addition, we may also collect your personal information for purposes that a reasonable person would consider appropriate in the circumstances or to which you consent.
Under our Refer-A-Friend or similar promotions, when you invite others to participate in our services, we may collect the information that you provide about those people such as their name, mailing address, email address, and phone number. When you give us this information on behalf of someone else, you confirm that you have provided them with the information set out in this Policy, and that they have given you permission for us to use their information as described in this Policy.
We may also monitor and record any communications we have with you, like phone conversations and emails. This is just to make sure we’re providing you with a good service and meeting our regulatory and legal responsibilities.
- HOW YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION IS USED AND SHARED WITH THIRD PARTIES
We use third-party analytics services and we provide your personal information to select partners to: assist us in offering relevant products and services to you when you visit our Site or contact us by other means; to provide us with business analytics to help analyze how users use our Site; and to assist us in personalizing our website for you. In some cases, information about your use of the Site (including your IP address) will be transmitted to and stored by our providers on servers outside of Canada. (See Notification Regarding Service Providers Outside of Canada in Section 6 below)
Some content or applications on the Site are served by third-parties, including advertisers, ad networks and servers, content providers, and application providers. These third-parties may use data collection technologies to collect information about you when you visit or use our website. The information they collect may be associated with your personal information or they may collect information, including personal information, about your online activities over time and across different websites and other online services. They may use this information to provide you with interest-based (behavioral) advertising or other targeted content. We do not control these third parties’ tracking technologies or how they may be used. If you have any questions about an advertisement or other targeted content, you should contact the responsible provider directly.
For more information on how this type of advertising works, go to: http://youradchoices.ca/understanding-online-advertising.
- DISCLOSURE OF YOUR INFORMATION
We may disclose personal information that we collect or you provide as described in this Policy:
- to manage and develop our businesses and operations, including business relationships with third parties, contractors or consultants we use to develop products, services or business strategies or to assist us to establish, maintain, and manage our business relationship with you, such as marketing our products and services or contacting you regarding our products and services;
- for co-marketing or co-branding initiatives;
- for regular reporting activities to our affiliates in and outside of Canada;
- to protect our rights and property or protect the safety of a person or a group of persons;
- to a third party, in the event of a change in ownership, in which personal information held by us about our Site users is among the assets transferred; and
- to any third party, where you have provided your consent for such disclosure.
We require our third-party providers to enter into contractual agreements, which require these third-party providers to comply with similar confidentiality and data security standards as Direct Energy and prohibit them from further disclosing or using your information other than to carry out the purposes for which the information was disclosed by us.
On rare occasions, we may use or disclose your personal information without your knowledge or consent where we are permitted or required by applicable law, court order, legal process, or regulatory requirements to do so.
We may also use, transfer, lease, sell or otherwise commercialize analytic or aggregated information for any and all purposes without further notice or obligation to you. You will not have any rights arising from the creation, collection or use of the analytic information. Although we have taken steps to anonymize the personal information, the parties to whom we disclose this analytic information may combine it with information they already have or obtain from others about you.
- NOTIFICATION REGARDING SERVICE PROVIDERS OUTSIDE OF CANADA
We may transfer or disclose certain personal information to third party service providers and to affiliated entities in connection with the performance of certain technological or administrative functions, such as data processing, data management, and data storage. In addition, third party service providers may collect personal information directly from the customer on our behalf. From time to time, these third party service providers may be located outside of Canada. Prior to transferring or making disclosures, we will take appropriate steps to ensure that these service providers safeguard and use the personal information only for authorized purposes set out in this Policy or in accordance with applicable laws. Personal information stored in other jurisdictions may be subject to the law of those jurisdictions, and may have different protections from those in Canada.
To ask questions or to obtain written information about our policies and practices regarding those service providers, you may contact our Privacy Officer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- SAFEGUARDING, STORING, AND RETAINING YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
- Safeguards of personal information
- We will safeguard personal information using the following methods that are appropriate for the sensitivity of the information:
- Protecting the confidentiality of all personal information when doing business internally or externally with other organizations; and
- Using appropriate and effective security safeguards, including physical, administrative, and technological safeguards, against such risks as loss or theft, unauthorized access, disclosure, copying, use or destruction, regardless of the format in which it is held.
Our safeguards were developed in accordance with industry standards. We cannot guarantee that such safeguards are always 100% effective or that they are impenetrable from breaches, and any personal information you transmit is at your own risk. We are not responsible for the circumvention of any privacy settings or security measures contained on the Site, the unauthorized use, access or disclosure of your personal information that may occur as a result of transmission over networks outside of our control, or access of encrypted information by unauthorized persons.
The safety and security of your information also depends on you. Where we have given you (or where you have chosen) a password for access to certain parts of our Site, you are responsible for keeping this password confidential. We ask you not to share your password with anyone. We also urge you to be careful about giving out information in public areas of the Site like message boards. The information you share in public areas may be viewed by any user of the website.
- STORAGE of personal information
We have implemented measures designed to secure your personal information. All information you provide to us is stored on our secure servers behind firewalls. Any payment transactions will be encrypted using SSL technology.
- Retention of personal information
We retain personal information in accordance with our legal or business practices. Once the personal information is no longer required to fulfill the purpose for which it was collected and no longer required or permitted to be retained for legal or business purposes, it is securely destroyed or made anonymous. We do not undertake any obligation to retain your data for any particular length of time and anticipate retaining your personal information for as long as it is useful.
- Phishing Emails
We will only use your personal information to contact and interact with you as described in this Policy. We will not send you an email asking you to reply by providing personal or account information, or threaten to disconnect your services unless you provide us personal information. If you receive such an email, it may be an attempted identity theft scheme that is commonly called “phishing,” where hackers steal your passwords or infect your computer with malicious software. If you are concerned about clicking links provided within an email sent by Direct Energy or one our affiliates, do not click the link. Instead, you should manually input our website address in your preferred web browser. Doing so will ensure that you do not open a third-party web site disguised to look like our website.
For more information about “phishing,” and steps you can take to protect your personal information, please visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre website at http://www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca/fraud-escroquerie/types/phishing-hameconnage/index-eng.htm.
- CHOICES ABOUT HOW WE USE AND DISCLOSE YOUR INFORMATION
It is important to us that we collect, use or disclose your personal information only where we have your consent to do so or as provided in this Policy. Depending on the sensitivity of the personal information, your consent may be express or implied. Express consent can be given orally, electronically or in writing. Implied consent is consent that can reasonably be inferred from your action or inaction. For example, when you accept our products or use our services, we will assume your consent to the collection, use and disclosure of your personal information for purposes described in this Policy. If third parties hold information about you that we require, we will endeavor to ensure the information has been collected with your consent.
We may collect, use, or disclose personal information about you without your knowledge or consent in the following circumstances:
- When the collection, use or disclosure of personal information is permitted or required by law;
- In an emergency that threatens an individual’s life, health or personal security;
- When we require legal advice from a lawyer;
- To protect ourselves from fraud; and
- To investigate the breach of an agreement or a contravention of law.
By submitting your personal information to us or obtaining our services, you consent to the collection of and use of your personal information in the manner described in this Policy. To the extent that we are required by applicable law to obtain your express consent for the collection, use or disclosure of your personal information, such consent will be requested at the appropriate time. Further, if we plan to use or disclose your personal information for a purpose not previously identified (either in this Policy or separately), we will advise you of that purpose before such use or disclosure.
You may change or withdraw your consent at any time, subject to legal or contractual restrictions and reasonable notice, by contacting our Privacy Officer at email@example.com. In some circumstances, a change or withdrawal of consent may limit our ability to provide products or services to you.
We are committed to complying with Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation. In the case of personal contact information provided in conjunction with any newsletter or other marketing initiatives, you can withdraw your consent to receive those communications and unsubscribe from any of our subscriptions and other communications at any time by contacting our Privacy Officer at firstname.lastname@example.org. In addition, commercial electronic communications sent by us to which you have subscribed will further contain an unsubscribe mechanism.
However, we reserve the right to send you transactional or informational emails such as customer service communications or bills in connection with the products you have purchased or changes to this site or our policies.
- ACCESSING AND CORRECTING YOUR INFORMATION
It is important that any personal information we hold about you is accurate and current. As such, it is imperative that you to keep us informed of changes to your personal information.
You can ask to see the personal information that we hold about you. If you want to review, verify or correct your personal information, please contact our Privacy Officer email@example.com. Please note that any such communications must be in writing.
When making an access request, we may require specific information from you to confirm your identity and right to access, as well as to search for, and provide you with, the personal information that we hold about you. We may charge you a fee to access your personal information in instances that require a disproportionate effort but we will advise you of any fee in advance. We may decline to process requests that are frivolous or unreasonably repetitive, risk the privacy of others, or are extremely impractical. If you need help in preparing your request, please contact our Privacy Officer.
We may from time to time make changes to this Policy to reflect changes in legal or regulatory obligations or changes in the manner in which we deal with personal information. We will post any revised version of this Policy on our website. Any changes to this Policy will be effective from the time they are posted, provided that any change that relates to why we collect, use or disclose your personal information will not apply to you, unless you consent to that change.
This Policy does not create or confer on any individual or on us any rights, or impose on us any obligations beyond any rights conferred or obligations imposed by Canadian privacy legislation.
- CONTACTING US
To get more information about our Policy, change or withdraw your consent or make a complaint under this Policy, you can contact us:
12 Greenway Plaza Suite 250
Houston, TX 77046
You can direct any questions or concerns about this Policy to our Privacy Officer. We maintain procedures to receive and investigate complaints and complainants will be advised of the results of any such investigation.
Last Amended: March 1, 2018