ShareThis takes privacy seriously. This Privacy Notice governs the main privacy principles and details we apply to the data we collect through the ShareThis social sharing tools.
About ShareThis Sharing Tools
ShareThis provides customizable social sharing tools, making sharing simple. You can easily share anything on the web with your friends on social sites, including Facebook, Twitter, Email, Digg, Reddit and more through one tool. In addition to the sharing service offered directly to you, our technology also allows us to gather information from publishers (websites that deliver content, such as articles and videos) that use our ShareThis Icon or our advertising technology, and enables ShareThis, our publishers, advertisers, and data partners to facilitate the delivery of relevant, targeted advertising, analytics, and data modeling based on social sharing.
Our aim is to enable advertisements by displaying products and/or services that you might be interested in, based on your recent browsing and/or sharing behavior, without identifying who you are by name, email or phone number. This is often called interest-based advertising (“IBA”) or online behavioral advertising (“OBA”). For example, if you visit and browse on Website A which uses a ShareThis tool, on a subsequent online visit to Website B, you may see ads personalized by your social sharing and/or browsing history on Website A but not personalized based on your name or other personally identifying information. For more information on IBA/OBA, click here.
We collect information via technical cookies placed on your browser, pixel tags, HTTP headers (or other communication protocols), and browser identifiers. We do not use flash cookies or other locally stored objects (LSO) that may be used to circumvent user opt-out choices.
Online Web Environment: (desktop, tablet, and smartphone browsers)
ShareThis “tags” visitors on the websites that use the ShareThis icon with browser cookies. Users tagged by ShareThis are given a technical identifier, such as C62414AY9324FB5671069928026P0067.
The browser cookie tracks the content viewed by the visitor and pages of websites which use the ShareThis icon (“our publishers”). Pixel tags are used to transfer browsing data from visitors of our publishers’ websites to ShareThis and our data partners.
Cookies are small text files that contain a string of characters and uniquely identify a browser. They are sent to a computer by website operators or third parties. Most browsers are initially set up to accept cookies. You may, however, be able to change your browser settings to cause your browser to refuse third-party cookies or to indicate when a third-party cookie is being sent. Check your browser’s “Help” files to learn more about handling cookies on your browser.
Pixel tags are small strings of code that provide a method for delivering a graphic image on a webpage or other document. Pixel tags allow the operator of the webpage or other document, or a third party who serves the pixel tag, to set, read, and modify cookies on, and to transfer other data to, the browser used to view the webpage or other document. Pixel tags may also be used to obtain information about the computer being used to view that webpage or other document, including the IP address of the computer that the tag is sent to, the time it was sent, the user’s operating system and browser type, and other similar information (commonly known as the user agent string).
HTTP headers are transmitted whenever a webpage is viewed, and contain technical information required for communication between a client (your computer or device) and a server (the webpage you visit). Other electronic communication protocols (such as those used for email) also use headers to transmit information. This information may include information about the client browser, the requested webpage, server and other information the third party knows about you, your computer or device. Note: ShareThis does not use persistent identifiers like a carrier or device ID to revive a previously opt-out profile or deleted cookie.
Other Environments: (Mobile applications)
In environments that do not support interest-based advertising cookies, like mobile applications, we do not collect usage data, see Data Collection and Use.
To serve ads in mobile applications, the advertiser identifiers, such as Google Advertising ID or Apple IDFA, depending on the operating system of your mobile device, may be used. These identifiers consist of a string of technical and random characters signaling out your device with a hash (non-reversible encrypting method). The advertiser identifier identifies your device but not you and can be reset by you. See your device manufacturer for more information.
Linking Environments: (browsers and mobile apps used)
To serve you personalized advertisements and provide a seamless online experience, third party data partners that we work with may link your identifiers on the different environments you are using. We enable the linking of our usage data through cookie syncing. We do not use personal information such as your name or address to operate the linking. Our data partners may use exact linking methods by leveraging the technical data collected through our technology such as advertising partners identifiers. Our data partners are members of the NAI or DAA and you can opt out of our tracking and theirs through NAI or DAA opt out mechanisms described in User Choices.
Data Collection and Use
We collect registration information and usage information. Your registration information is not connected to usage Information. For usage information, we use data that does not directly identify an individual (Non-Personally Identifiable Information, or Non-PII). We collect and use technical data relating to a certain amount (not all!) of your browsing navigation to display personalized advertisements, provide analytics, and data modeling based on social sharing, by us or third parties.
how data is collected
Many of our services can be used without registering with us. However, you will need to register with us if you want to use some of our enhanced features, like automatic log-in. If you chose to register with us, you affirm that you are 13 years of age or older and you will be providing us with certain information, some of which identifies you personally, such as your name and email, and other registration information. We do not sell or share registration information to third parties for marketing purposes. We may offer social media services in which our registered users can share information about themselves with their friends, including information about their interests and favorite websites. You can decide what information you want to share with others in this manner. This information will only be made available to friends with whom you specifically share such information. However, whenever you voluntarily post personal information in public areas, like blogs, message boards, and forums, you should be aware that this information can be accessed by anyone with access to those places. Please exercise discretion in deciding what information you disclose.
Note on Emails from Registered Users:
We perform email verifications on our ShareThis widgets whereby users verify their identity via email sent to their respective provider email account or they authenticate their account using third-party account authentication through Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google, or Yahoo!. Even still, we cannot block users from sending emails from your email address or to your email address. We are not responsible for the information provided or shared by users via the ShareThis widget.
We collect data when your device visits our website, uses or interacts with our services (including sharing content with our sharing icons), when your device visits our publishers’ websites that use our sharing icons or services, and when your device views or clicks advertisements that we serve or are served on our behalf. Usage data does not include the content of messages that you write when you share using our Icon but does include the type of article you shared. The type of article is not connected to your registration information but to the usage data that is not connected to your name.
Usage data may include, without limitation:
- Unique IDs of a cookie placed on a web browser (example: 37d387ca-f68a-11e5-b87d-0e58954c72b1)
- General click-stream behavior
- Webpages viewed (including the URL addresses of such pages)
- Search queries from which users are directed to a page
- Navigation from page to page through the ShareThis services
- Time spent on each page
- Items clicked or selected
- Content highlighted
- IP addresses
- Mobile advertising identifiers (Apple IDFA or Google AAID) which are specific technical data created by mobile manufacturers to allow personalization and customer analytics in a secure and non-identifying way for users (not collected by us but may be used with our data)
- Information contained in HTTP headers or other intent transfer protocol signals
- Attributes of computer or device usage, type of browser (e.g., Internet Explorer, Firefox, or Safari), and operating system (iOS or other for mobile devices)
Specific types of the information listed above that do not directly identify an individual may be considered personal information in different parts of the world or when combined with other information. In such cases, we treat this information as personal information.
ShareThis is aware of the sensitivity of certain types of data. We do not create interest segments that reflect data that we consider sensitive. While types of data considered sensitive may vary among users, we presently treat data as sensitive if it includes sensitive health information (such as a user having a serious medical condition like cancer); certain aspects of a user’s personal life or financial situation (such as credit, insurance or employment eligibility); or use of, or interest in, gambling, alcoholic beverages, or “adult” products or services. ShareThis does not consider general health interest such as skin care, diet, or fitness to be sensitive and therefore may use such interests. If you would like to view the list of health and wellness interest data segments available by ShareThis, please click here.
ShareThis does not intentionally collect data from, and does not tailor any segments to, children under 13 years of age.
how data is used
We use your Registration Information: a) to fulfill requests for our services; b) to communicate with you and respond to your inquiries; c) to conduct research about the use of our services; d) to enable you to create an account, store log-in credentials, and customize your ShareThis services; e) to contact you from time to time about ShareThis services; and f) for ShareThis to provide offers for products and services of ShareThis and our partners that may be of interest to you. If you decide to share your interests and your profile information with your friends on ShareThis, we will display your profile information according to the preferences you set in your account. You can control the types of certain emails you receive by click on links in the emails, although you agree that we may always contact you to provide you with important information or notices required by ShareThis.
ShareThis uses the usage data we collect and information collected from our third-party partners to create audience segments and to otherwise enable interest-based advertising. Audience segments are groups of users and certain general interest categories that we have inferred based on a) demographic or interest data, b) a general geographic location derived from your IP address, c) the pages you view and links you click, and/or search terms you enter when using certain services. These audience segments do not contain Personally Identifiable Information (“PII”); they are tied to a device, not a person. For example, these segments may disclose that a user located in a geographic area may be interested in cars, but this information does not identify or include the name, email, phone number, mailing address, or user name of any specific individual. Audience segments are not tied to Registration Information.
We may also use usage data for research and development purposes, for our internal operational purposes, and to create aggregate statistics for market research or analytics services. These aggregated statistics do not include information that directly identifies an individual. We offer some of the usage data to our customers for their own internal analytics or data modeling. In such cases, we contractually prohibit the customers from re-identifying you without your opt in consent.
Each environment is separate. If you do not want to receive ads based on usage data collected by ShareThis whatever device or browser used, you must disable our services for each device and each internet web browser.
Opting out does not mean you will stop seeing advertisements, but that the advertisements you do see will not be influenced by the usage data collected by ShareThis. It also does not affect your registration information. For canceling or deleting your registration information, see Data Security and Retention.
Browser environment: (desktop, tablet, and smartphone browsers)
When you opt out as instructed in this section, an opt out cookie will be set on your browser. We must maintain the opt out cookie on your browser in order to recognize you as having opted out from our service. You must opt out again if you clear that cookie from your browser, use a different internet browser, or use a new computer to access the internet.
You can also opt out by visiting the following links. Please note these links allow you to opt out of interest-based advertising delivered by registered members (i.e., us and other companies that also provide interest-based advertising and are members of these self-regulatory organizations) on the current browser you are using when you opt out on their platform.
The opt-out tools above are currently cookie-based, and prevent ShareThis from using usage data for interest-based advertising on the browser on which they are installed. As a result, the opt out will only function if your browser is set to accept third-party cookies, and may not function where cookies are sometimes automatically disabled or removed (potentially without your knowledge), like Safari. If you delete cookies, change your browser settings, switch browsers or computers, or use another operating system, you will need to opt out again.
While the opt-out methods described above often work for mobile web browsing, they are cookie-based and are therefore less reliable in mobile “app” environments that may not accept cookies.
Instead, you can typically opt out at the mobile platform level by the limit ad tracking within the settings function, as described below. Though we do not collect data from mobile apps for interest-based advertising, we or third parties we work with may use such data collected by others in delivering interest-based ads.
Most Android Users:
To use the “opt-out of interest-based advertising” option, follow the instructions provided by Google here: Google Play Help.
Please note that this is a device setting and will disable interest-based ads from all providers, and not just for ShareThis.
iOS users: (version 6 and above)
To use the “Limit Ad-Tracking” option, follow the instructions provided by Apple here: Apple Support Center.
Please note that this is a device setting and will disable interest-based ads from all providers, and not just for ShareThis.
Do Not Track and Cookie Blocking:
ShareThis does not process do-not-track signals from browsers. However, you may prevent ShareThis from collecting data using cookies on a browser by blocking third-party cookies in that browser. If you block third-party cookies from being set on your browser, you may not be able to enjoy some features or functionality of, and you may see the same content and advertisements repeatedly on, some websites. Check your browser’s “Help” files to learn more about handling cookies on your browser.
The Ghostery browser extension is also a good tool to see a list of all third-party cookies on each website you visit and allows you to selectively opt out.
Corporate Website Collection and Use
You can browse the ShareThis corporate website (ShareThis.com) without providing any personally identifiable information (PII). You may choose to provide PII to us voluntarily if you interact with ShareThis.com in certain ways, such as apply for employment with ShareThis, or posting a question in the forum, or using one of our contact forms.
This information is used only for the reasons it was collected, such as responding to your communication, and is not shared with third parties other than to fulfill the purpose for which it was collected.
We may also collect non-personally identifiable information (Non-PII), through the use of technologies such as cookies, as explained in our Technology Section above. We may use this Non-PII for purposes including enhancement of our services; marketing, interest-based advertising, and to more effectively match our website content to your interest.
We may also work with third parties who collect information on ShareThis.com, and we may maintain links to other websites on ShareThis.com. This Privacy Notice does not apply to the privacy practices of other websites or of third parties who collect information on ShareThis.com. We encourage you to visit the applicable policies of those third parties, or visit www.aboutads.info to learn more about interest-based advertising and to see your opt-out choices from other participating companies that may be collecting and using data on ShareThis.com.
Our website is not intentionally directed at children under the age of 13. We do not knowingly collect information from children under the age of 13.
Data Sharing or Disclosure
We share non-personally identifiable usage data, including audience segments, with advertisers, publishers (website owners), and other data partners (all, our customers) for interest-based advertising, analytics and data modeling.
We share non-personally identifiable usage data, including audience segments, with advertisers, publishers (websites with our ShareThis icon), and other data partners (all, our customers) for interest-based advertising, analytics and data modeling.
Our customers may use third-party service providers, acting on their behalf, to display advertising or other content that reflects users in an audience segment.
We also provide analytics to help publishers (websites with our ShareThis icon) to better understand the use and interactions on their website. This information tells a publisher how many people are sharing content from their website. We may offer aggregate browsing data so a publisher may know the people most likely to share their content with their friends are, for example, soccer fans.
When we share usage data with customers, we contractually prohibit them from re-identifying you (with your name, address, email, phone or other directly identifying information) without opt in consent.
We also share usage data with third-party service providers (e.g., data storage and processing facilitates or modeling vendors) in order for those service providers to perform business functions for ShareThis or on behalf of ShareThis customers. When ShareThis shares usage data with third party service providers, we require them to use it only for the purposes of providing services to us and to implement security controls and to maintain the confidentiality of that information.
ShareThis may use or disclose registration information and/or usage data as we believe to be necessary or appropriate: (a) under applicable law, including laws outside your country of residence; b) to comply with legal process; c) to respond to requests from public and government authorities, including public and government authorities outside your country of residence; d) to enforce our terms and conditions; e) to protect our operations or those of any of our affiliates, you or others; f) to allow us to pursue available remedies or limit the damage that we may sustain; and g) as part of a merger, acquisition, or sale of assets.
Data Security and Retention
The security of your information is a high priority to ShareThis. We have implemented industry-standard security measures, as appropriate for the sensitivity of the data.
The security of your information is a high priority to ShareThis. We have implemented industry-standard security measures, as appropriate for the sensitivity of the particular data.
However, no transmission of data over the Internet is guaranteed to be completely secure. While we strive to protect your data, it may be possible for third parties not under the control of ShareThis to unlawfully intercept or access transmissions or private communications. ShareThis cannot ensure or warrant the security of information you transmit to us.
We retain usage data that we collect for up to 14 months from the date of collection. Our cookies expire 14 months after they are last updated. For example, if you browsed a sports website for baseball on January 1, your membership to ShareThis’ “Sports/Team Sports” audience segment would expire by March 1 of the following year. Aggregate, de-identified data (which is not connected to an individual or device) for reporting may be retained for a longer period. We may permit some customers to retain usage data for longer periods of time for limited purposes such as seasonal or cyclical interest-based advertising campaigns or internal analytics and model development. Such customers deletion of this usage data is according to their posted privacy policies or other retention periods communicated publicly.
ShareThis may also retain other statistical data related to the performance, operation and use of services for more than 14 months for security and operations management, statistical analyses, service improvement, and research and development.
We will retain registration information as long as you have an active account with us. If you have not logged into any of our services with your username and password for a period of 14 consecutive months, we may deem your account as being inactive. Once we deem your account inactive, we may delete your registration information, including any data you may have saved, without any liability to you. You always have the option to cancel your account with us at any time. Simply sign into the site and click on the My Account at the top of the page. Click on Edit Profile and then select Deactivate Account and follow the instructions. You may also request to have your registration information removed by submitting a request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Commitments to Privacy Standards
ShareThis supports transparency and control for users.
In particular, ShareThis is a member of the following self-regulatory programs:
Network Advertising Initiative (NAI):
ShareThis adheres to the NAI codes (NAI Code of Conduct, Mobile Application Code). NAI offers an online web opt-out platform to allow consumers to express their choices and provides general information related to privacy and Interest Based Advertising.
The Digital Advertising Alliance (DAA):
ShareThis adheres to the Digital Advertising Alliance Self-Regulatory Principles for Online Behavioral Advertising. The DAA opt-out platform offers the consumer a choice page to opt out from advertising services, and general information related to privacy.
For California Users:
California privacy law allows California residents to obtain specific disclosures about a business’s privacy practices if it shares information with other companies for direct marketing purposes. To make a request, please send an email to: email@example.com. Pursuant to California privacy law, registered users under 18 years of age may request to have content or information posted by the user removed from any of our online platforms by sending an email request to: firstname.lastname@example.org. The removal of content does not ensure complete or comprehensive removal of the content posted on any of our line platforms by the registered user. We do not advertise or market any products or services identified in Chapter 22.1 Sec.22580 to users we have actual knowledge are under 18 years of age.
For any questions on this privacy notice:
4005 Miranda Avenue
Palo Alto, CA 94304-1227
Please note we may update or change this privacy notice. If we revise our privacy notice, we will post those changes to this privacy statement, and to other places we deem appropriate, so that you are aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If we make material changes, we will notify you by means of a notice on this site prior to the change becoming effective.
Effective Date: 08-22-2016, updated January 26, 2017