Collection of Information
StartEngine also collects personal information from you (“Personally Identifiable Information”) when you sign up for an account, send us an email through the Site, sign up for or purchase a service through the Site, or make an investment through the Site. Personally Identifiable Information refers to non-public information that personally relates to or identifies you (such as your name, password, age and date of birth, gender, email address, postal mailing address, home/mobile telephone number and/or taxpayer identification number, Internet protocol (“IP”) address, investment objectives, investment experience, assets and income, and other similar information, or other information you provide or upload to the Site such as photographs, answers to questionnaires or surveys, or responses filled in on blank forms by you made available on the Site). We request that you provide us with personal information, including, but not limited to, your personal or company social media profile, demographic information, financial information about issuers (i.e. valuations, share prices, fundraising goals), financial information about individuals (i.e. net worth) and other information requested from time to time. We may also collect and store information, which could include Non-Personally Identifiable Information or Personally Identifiable Information, locally on your computer or device using mechanisms such as browser web storage or application data caches. However, not all Non-Personally Identifiable Information and Personally Identifiable Information is stored.
We may use analytics programs and service providers, such as Google Analytics, which can use first party cookies to report on your interactions with the Site. Google Analytics collects information including, but not limited to, the time of each of your visits to the Site, whether you have visited the Site before, what website referred you to the Site, and what pages you viewed on the Site.
Use of Information
StartEngine will use information you provide consistent with this Privacy Notice. StartEngine will use information you provide to us, including Non-Personally Identifiable Information or Personally Identifiable Information, to better serve you and enhance your experience with the Site, among other things. This may include having to modify or copy such Non-Personally Identifiable Information or Personally Identifiable Information, or other information such as images or textual content you provide, in order to provide you with a seamless and enjoyable experience.
Toward these ends, you consent to our use and disclosure of any information submitted to us via the Site, or information collected when you access the Site in any manner, and you acknowledge that you have no expectation of privacy, confidentiality or privilege in such information.
StartEngine may use Non-Personally Identifiable Information and Personally Identifiable Information: (1) to market our products and services to you; (2) to provide services and products requested by you; (3) to serve advertisements on our Site; (4) to enable our vendors and contractors to provide and assist us in the marketing, operation, troubleshooting and analysis of our Site and other services; (5) to analyze data to send more targeted messages to you or other Users of our Site; (6) to conduct research and analyze data to improve our products, services, and Site; (7) to deliver email messages like special offers, updates, newsletters, customer service, and service announcements; (8) to verify User information; (9) to comply with and meet any regulatory requirements for the offer or sale of securities required by law, rules or regulations to our affiliates or members; (10) to protect our Site or its Users; (11) to engage in any other lawful activities we believe are consistent with the foregoing; and (12) when required by law or to protect against legal liability. We may provide any of these services through third parties, which may necessitate sharing Non-Personally Identifiable Information or Personally Identifiable Information with them.
StartEngine may make your information, including Non-Personally Identifiable Information or Personally Identifiable Information, available on its Site and visible to other Users of or visitors to the Site. For instance, subject to certain preferences and permissions as to visibility you will be allowed to make, information you provide about yourself in response to questionnaires on our Site may be made available to others such as information concerning your status as an accredited investor. As such, other Users of our Site may be able to personally identify you based on your information made available on our Site. As a further example, if you utilize Third Party Services to log into our Site, other Users to whom you may be connected to through such Third Party Service may be able to view or follow information about you, including Non-Personally Identifiable Information or Personally Identifiable Information, on our Site.
StartEngine may employ or contract other third parties, companies, or individuals to perform certain functions or services on its behalf. Examples of these services from such third parties, companies, or individuals, may include ID verification, electronic document signing, payment storing and processing, sending postal mail and email, escrow services, disbursement of funds, analyzing data, providing marketing assistance, and providing customer service. As such, these third parties, companies, or individuals may have access to your information, including Non-Personally Identifiable Information or Personally Identifiable Information, needed to perform their functions or services, and may not use it for other purposes.
StartEngine may also use and disclose Personally Identifiable Information and Non-Personally Identifiable Information to help us to carry out certain internal functions such as information management, account processing, client services, or other data collection relevant to our business; to investigate and help prevent potentially unlawful activity or activities that threaten the integrity of our Site or network; to protect and defend our rights or property or the rights or property of others; as required by courts or administrative agencies; and in connection with a financing, sale, merger, or reorganization of StartEngine’s business or assets. Any successor in interest to our business would acquire the information we maintain, including Personally Identifiable Information, and may alter the terms of this Privacy Notice.
Except as identified here and subject to user's ability to opt-out as provided by Regulation S-P, StartEngine does not and will not sell any of your information, including Non-Personally Identifiable Information or Personally Identifiable Information, to any third party for purposes of advertising, soliciting, or telemarketing. StartEngine may provide Personally Identifiable Information, including your name, email address, and the date and company of any investment to certain third parties that have referred issuers and investors to StartEngine, or to certain Issuers, including but not limited to issuers in which you have expressed interest. StartEngine may also be required to disclose your information, including Non-Personally Identifiable Information or Personally Identifiable Information, to other companies or entities in the event that StartEngine may be sold or is sold to another company or entity. In that case, your information, including Non-Personally Identifiable Information or Personally Identifiable Information, may be sold or transferred to such acquiring company or entity.
Third Party Sites and Services
The Site contains links to other websites and services not maintained by StartEngine. In addition, other websites and services may also reference or link to the Site. We encourage you to be aware when you enter or leave our Site, or surf the Internet, and to read the privacy statements of each website and service that you visit. We do not endorse, screen, or approve, and are not responsible for the privacy practices or the content of other websites or services.
The Site permits Users to communicate with companies and other Users posting information on the Site. We may read, collect and analyze information transmitted between Users for regulatory compliance and marketing purposes. We do not guarantee that information provided by Site visitors or investors is accurate or complete. StartEngine assumes no liability or responsibility for any errors or omissions in the content of its Site.
We may at times send you email communications with information, marketing or promotional materials. If you prefer not to receive such emails from us, you may unsubscribe completely by contacting us through the contact form www.startengine.com/contact, chat feature, or by submitting a question through the imbedded “help” button that is processed through Zendesk.
Please note that opt-out requests may take up to five (5) business days to process. Please also note that at times we may need to send you email communications that are transactional in nature such as service or termination announcements or payment confirmations which are communications you will not be able to opt-out of.
You will be able to modify the information concerning your account by visiting your profile page and editing any information you wish to change. You will be able to view and change your email address, password, financial information, contact information, or other login information by visiting your account’s settings page subject to our Site policy. If you wish to suspend your account or need help modifying account information, please contact us through the contact form by clicking on the lower right question mark icon and selecting contact us, chat feature, or by submitting a question through the imbedded “help” button that is processed through Zendesk. We may require up to five business days to process such requests.
Through your account settings you will be able to set certain preferences and permissions regarding the visibility of your information, including Non-Personally Identifiable Information or Personally Identifiable Information, to others. You may stop or restrict the placement of StartEngine’s cookies, Google’s cookies and third party cookies on your computer by adjusting your web browser preferences or a “Do Not Track” setting in your web browser. If you do so, you may still use our Site, but this may interfere with some of its functionality. You may also clear cookies from your computer via your web browser settings.
If you would like us to remove your Personally Identifiable Information from our database, please send a request through the contact form, select the lower right question mark and then select contact us, chat feature, or by submitting a question through the imbedded “help” button that is processed through Zendesk.
We are not responsible for removing your Personally Identifiable Information from the lists of any Third Party Services or other third party who has previously been provided your information in accordance with this Privacy Notice.
How to prevent your information from being sold
Click on the link “Do Not Sell My Personal Information” when logged into our website and then click on the link “click here” to confirm your request. If you are not logged in, then we cannot identify you and record your request.
How we identify you
Should you request to not allow us to sell your information or wish to delete your information to the extent it is permitted by FINRA and the SEC (we have strict data retention rules for customer information and transactions), we will require a phone call to our toll free number 800-317-2200. We will ask you for personal identifiable information that may include your name, address, recent transaction information and social security number. If we are unable to verify you, we will send you a letter to your home address with a security code to identify you and request you call us at 800-317-2200.
We use reasonable efforts to secure access to Personally Identifiable Information in our possession, but will not be liable for any failure to safeguard such information, whether inadvertent or otherwise. Personally Identifiable Information is also stored with third parties who have informed us that they also use reasonable efforts to secure access to Personally Identifiable Information, but we will not be liable for the failure of any third party to safeguard Personally Identifiable Information, whether inadvertent or otherwise.
Our employees are required to protect the confidentiality of your information and to comply with our established policies. We maintain physical, electronic, and procedural safeguards to protect your information. We protect the security of your information during transmission by using Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) software, which encrypts information you input. Wherever appropriate, we obfuscate and/or encrypt information in our systems and/or during information transfer.
It is important for you to protect against unauthorized access to your password and to your computer. Be sure to log off when finished using a shared computer.
The Site is not intended for use by children, especially those under eighteen years of age. No one under eighteen years of age is allowed to use the Site, provide any personal information or receive our email distributions. We do not knowingly solicit or collect Personally Identifiable Information from children under the age of thirteen (13) or anyone under eighteen years of age. If you believe that a minor has disclosed Personally Identifiable Information to StartEngine, please report this to us immediately by contacting us through the contact form www.startengine.com/contact, chat feature, or by submitting a question through the imbedded “help” button that is processed through Zendesk.
Our Business Continuity Plan
We have a Business Continuity Plan that is designed to permit our firm to resume operations as quickly as possible, given the scope and severity of a significant business disruption.
In a disruption to only our firm or to a building housing our firm, we will transfer our operations to a local site (if necessary) and would expect to recover and resume business quickly. In a disruption affecting our business district, city, or region, we will most likely transfer our operations to a site outside of the affected area, and then attempt to promptly recover and resume business. Under all scenarios, we plan to continue in business and to notify you regarding how to contact us. If the business disruption is so severe that it prevents us from remaining in business, we will arrange notification for our customers, relative to how they might be affected. If, after a significant business disruption, you cannot contact us as you usually do at (800) 469-6785, you may email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or go to our website at www.startengine.com.
We plan to recover as quickly as possible and resume business operations after a significant business disruption. Our business continuity plan addresses: data backup and recovery; all mission critical systems; financial and operational assessments; alternative communications with customers, employees, regulators, banks and vendors; and relocating to an alternative physical location if necessary.
Changes to This Privacy Notice
We reserve the right, in our sole discretion, to change, modify, add, or remove portions of this Privacy Notice at any time. Any changes or updates will be effective immediately upon posting to our Site. You should review this Privacy Notice regularly for changes, and can determine if changes have been made by checking the Effective Date below. Your continued use of our Site following the posting of any changes to this Privacy Notice means you accept such changes.
Applicable Law and Jurisdiction
The Site is maintained in the United States of America. By accessing the Site, you consent to and authorize the export of Personally Identifiable Information to the United States of America and its storage and use as specified in this Privacy Notice.
This Privacy Notice shall be governed by, construed and entered in accordance with the laws of the State of California applicable to contracts deemed to be made within such state, without regard to choice of law or conflict of law provisions thereof. All disputes with respect to this Privacy Notice shall be brought and heard either in the California state courts located in Los Angeles, California, or the federal district court of California located in Los Angeles County, California. You consent to the in personam jurisdiction and venue of such courts. YOU HEREBY WAIVE YOUR RIGHT TO A TRIAL BY JURY WITH RESPECT TO ANY CLAIM, ACTION OR PROCEEDING, DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY, ARISING OUT OF, OR RELATING TO, THIS AGREEMENT TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW.
This Privacy Notice was last updated on December 23rd, 2019.