SurfMerchants LLC (“SM”) has adopted this Privacy Shield Policy (“Policy”) to establish and maintain an adequate level of Personal Data privacy protection. This Policy applies to the processing of Personal Data that SM obtains from Customers located in the European Union and elsewhere, on behalf of our Agents.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has jurisdiction over SM’s compliance with the Privacy Shield.
This Policy applies to the processing of Individual Customer Personal Data that SM receives in the United States or EU concerning Individual Customers who reside in the European Union or outside the EU, on behalf of our Agents or direct Customers. SM provides products and services to businesses and consumers and acts as the Processor for these Agents.
This Policy does not cover data from which individual persons cannot be identified or situations in which pseudonyms are used. (The use of pseudonyms involves the replacement of names or other identifiers with substitutes so that identification of individual persons is not possible.)
SM has designated the Compliance Team to oversee its information security program, including its compliance with the EU Privacy Shield program. The Compliance Team shall review and approve any material changes to this program as necessary. Any questions, concerns, or comments regarding this Policy also may be directed to email@example.com.
SM will maintain, monitor, test, and upgrade information security policies, practices, and systems to assist in protecting the Personal Data that it collects. SM personnel will receive training, as applicable, to effectively implement this Policy. Please refer to Section 7 for a discussion of the steps that SM has undertaken to protect Personal Data.
SM will renew its EU Privacy certifications annually, unless it subsequently determines that it no longer needs such certification or if it employs a different adequacy mechanism.
Prior to the re-certification, SM will conduct an in-house verification to ensure that its statements and assertions with regard to its treatment of Individual Customer Personal Data are accurate and that the company has appropriately implemented these practices. Specifically, as part of the verification process, SM will undertake the following:
Except as otherwise provided herein, SM discloses Personal Data only to it’s Agents who reasonably need to know such data and only for the scope of the initial transaction and not for other purposes. Such recipients must agree to abide by SM’s confidentiality obligations.
SM may provide Personal Data to Third Parties that act as Agents, consultants, and contractors to perform tasks on behalf of and under our instructions. For example, SM may store such Personal Data in the facilities operated by Third Parties. Such Third Parties must agree to use such Personal Data only for the purposes for which they have been engaged by SM and they must either:
SM also may disclose Personal Data for other purposes or to other Third Parties when a Data Subject has consented to or requested such disclosure. Please be aware that SM 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. SM is liable for appropriate onward transfers of personal data to third parties.
SM does not knowingly collect Sensitive Data from its Individual Customers. If an Agent does collect such data it is without our consent. Any concerns of being asked to provide sensitive data can be addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org
SM uses reasonable efforts to maintain the accuracy and integrity of Personal Data and to update it as appropriate. SM has implemented physical and technical safeguards to protect Personal Data from loss, misuse, and unauthorized access, disclosure, alternation, or destruction. For example, electronically stored Personal Data is stored on a secure network with firewall protection, and access to SM’s electronic information systems requires user authentication via password or similar means. SM also employs access restrictions, limiting the scope of employees who have access to Individual Customer Personal Data.
Further, SM uses secure encryption technology to protect certain categories of personal data. Despite these precautions, no data security safeguards guarantee 100% security all of the time.
SM personnel may access and use Personal Data only if they are authorized to do so and only for the purpose for which they are authorized.
This Policy may be amended from time to time, consistent with the Privacy Shield Principles and applicable data protection and privacy laws and principles. We will make employees available of changes to this policy either by posting to our intranet, through email, or other means. We will notify Customers if we make changes that materially affect the way we handle Personal Data previously collected, and we will allow them to choose whether their Personal Data may be used in any materially different manner.
EU, and non EU Individual customers may contact SM with questions or complaints concerning this Policy at the following address:
In compliance with the US-EU Privacy Shield Principles, SM commits to resolve complaints about your privacy and our collection or use of your personal information. EU and non EU individuals with questions or concerns about the use of their Personal Data should contact the Agent they sign up with. After contacting the Agent they may contact us at: email@example.com
If a Individual Customer’s question or concern cannot be satisfied through this process SM has further committed to refer unresolved privacy complaints under US-EU Privacy Shield to an independent dispute resolution mechanism operated by the Council of Better Business Bureaus.
“Agent” means a customer or client of SM that contract with SM to Process data for the purpose of mystery shopping, auditing, or market research of any kind.
“Individual Customer” shall include any all individuals. This can include, but is not limited to shoppers, auditors, or any other individual, that belongs to one of SM’s Agents, on a systems hosted by SM, where SM has obtained his or her Personal Data, in the role of Processor, from such Individual Customers as part the Agents business relationship with SM.
“Data Subject” means an identified or identifiable natural living person. An identifiable person is one who can be identified, directly or indirectly, by reference to a name, or to one or more factors unique to his or her personal physical, psychological, mental, economic, cultural or social characteristics.
“Employee” means an employee (whether temporary, permanent, part-time, or contract), former employee, independent contractor, or job applicant of SM or any of its affiliates or subsidiaries, who is also a resident of a country within the European Economic Area.
“Europe” or “European” refers to a country in the European Union.
“Personal Data” as defined under the European Union Directive 95/46/EC means data that personally identifies or may be used to personally identify a person, including an individual’s name in combination with country of birth, marital status, emergency contact, salary information, terms of employment, job qualifications (such as educational degrees earned), address, phone number, e-mail address, user ID, password, and identification numbers. Personal Data does not include data that is de-identified, anonymous, or publicly available.
“Sensitive Data” means Personal Data that discloses a Data Subject’s medical or health condition, political, religious or philosophical affiliations or opinions, sexual orientation, or trade union membership.
“Third Party” means any individual or entity that is neither SM nor an SM employee, agent, contractor, or representative.