WELCOME TO MERIT CONSUMER SERVICES!
Merit Consumer Services takes your privacy seriously.
Information You Provide to Us
In addition to other information we collect when you register, we may collect your driver's license number and social security number as a requirement of the credit bureau to verify your identity. We use this information in order to fulfill your request for a credit report or score. We may collect Personal Information through various other forms and in various places through the Services, including contact us forms, or when you otherwise interact with us.
We may also collect information concerning your values, opinions, attitudes, interests, preferences, lifestyle and other similar information (“Psychographic Information”). We use this information in order to determine what additional products and services might appeal to you and to help us target products or services that we believe may be of interest to you.
When you request Services such as job search assistance, social service assistance, debt negotiation assistance, or access the financial planning tools provided on our website, we may ask that you provide us information about your employment, assets and liabilities, income and expenses, tax returns, pay stubs, statements from your lenders and depository institutions, rent receipts and other similar information (“Financial Information”). We use this information in order to fulfill your request for assistance and provide the Services you are seeking.
Information We Collect As You Access And Use The Services
In addition to any Personal Information, Demographic Information, Psychographic Information, Financial Information or other information that you choose to submit to us, we and our third-party service providers may use a variety of technologies that automatically (or passively) collect certain information whenever you visit or interact with the Services (“Usage Information”). For example, we automatically receive and record information that your browser sends whenever you visit our website. These server logs may include information such as your IP address or other unique identifier (“Device Identifier”) , browser type, browser language, the date and time of your request, and one or more cookies that may uniquely identify your browser from your computer or other device used to access the Services (any, a “Device” ). A Device Identifier is a number that is automatically assigned to your Device used to access the Services, and our computers identify your Device by its Device Identifier.
We use aggregate data collected in log files and cookies for general purposes: to enhance or otherwise improve the Services, to customize the advertising and content you see, improve our services, develop new services, conduct research, and provide anonymous reporting for internal and external clients. These cookies and log files do not store your Personal Information, Demographic Information, Psychographic Information or Financial Information, but they are tied to your Personal Information in our system.
Below are examples of methods that we may use to collect Usage Information. In the future, other new technology and methods for collecting Usage Information may develop.
Embedded Scripts. An embedded script is programming code that is designed to collect information about your interactions with the Services, such as the links you click on. The code is temporarily downloaded onto your Device from our web server or a third party service provider, is active only while you are connected to the Services, and is deactivated or deleted thereafter.
Information Third Parties Provide About You
Information You Provide About A Third Party
If you choose to use our referral service to tell a friend about our Services, we will ask you for your friend's name and email address. We will automatically send your friend a one-time email inviting him or her to visit the site. We store this information for the purpose of tracking the success of our Invite-A-Friend referral program. The information you provide (names, e-mail addresses, etc.) is used to facilitate the communication and introduction to the Merit Consumer Services Services. Please be aware that when you use any send-to-a-friend functionality through our Services, your name or e-mail address may be included in the communication sent to your friend.
Your friend may contact us at Legal@MeritConsumerServices.com to request that we remove this information from our database.
Information Collected by Mobile Applications
Certain aspects of the Services may be provided through an application on your mobile, tablet computer, or similar device (“Mobile Application”). You agree that we may collect and use technical data and related information, including but not limited to, technical information about your device, system and application software, and peripherals, that is gathered periodically to facilitate the provision of software updates, product support and other services to you (if any) related to such Mobile Applications.
When you use any of our Mobile Applications, the Mobile Application may automatically collect and store information from your mobile device (“Mobile Device Information”). Here are some examples of the Mobile Device Information that may be collected and stored:
We may use information automatically collected by the Mobile Application (including the Mobile Device Information) in the following ways:
We may associate your unique device identifier or Mobile Application usage information with any personal information you provide, but we will treat the combined information as personal information.
For purposes of your use of any Mobile Application and the services offered through any Mobile Application, the Mobile Application may also collect certain information about you (including Personal Information) that you knowingly supply to the Mobile Application such as the following:
We will share your Personal Information or Financial Information with third parties only in the ways that are described in this policy.
We use the information we collect from you and third parties to operate our Services, communicate with you, conduct research and development to improve or enhance our Services and our users' experience, and promote our Services. These are a few examples:
To create your account and provide the Services to you. We use the information we collect to create and secure your account, create and maintain your Member Profile, and to provide the Services to you.
To provide features to you, such as your credit reports and scores. We use the information we collect to provide you with credit reports and scores from our credit bureau partners. We offer much more than credit reports and scores though; the information we collect also goes into developing and bringing you various other features that we may develop in the future like free credit monitoring, ID monitoring, tracking your spending, and personalized offer recommendations.
To improve our recommendations and insights. The information we collect also helps us tailor our content and improve the way we match you to recommended offers or insights. We're constantly working on ways to better identify and present the information that's most relevant to you.
To communicate with you. We use information we collect to provide you with member support or to send you things like service-related announcements, credit or ID monitoring alerts, recommendations, offers from our partners and other updates or promotions. Most of the time we'll communicate with you by email, but we may also send you push notifications, browser notifications, or even snail mail.
When We Share the Information We Collect
We do not share your credit reports or scores with unaffiliated third parties (except agents acting on our behalf; as explained in this policy).
We do not sell your Personal Information to or share your Personal Information with unaffiliated third parties for their own advertising or marketing purposes.
We may share information about you, including Personal Information, with third parties in a variety of other ways, such as:
When we collaborate with third parties to provide and improve our Services. We may sometimes share information about you with third parties we collaborate with in connection with providing or improving our Services. This can occur, for example, when we're providing an integrated or co-branded feature with a partner (e.g., a Credit Score Simulator) or doing a joint research project with another organization to help improve our Services. We may also share information like the feedback you submit to us if it relates to both our Services and a partner's products. When we share information with third-party collaborators, our collaborators are obligated to follow this Policy, but may also use the information in connection with their own activities to the extent allowed under their own privacy practices (e.g., respond to your feedback, conduct additional research, or improve a feature of theirs).
Our partners when you ask for their services. We may also give you opportunities to interact with third party partners through our Services, such as when we provide you with the opportunity to review and send your personal information to a partner in order to pre-populate an application on the partner’s site or we send you to the partner’s site for you to provide the information directly to them. In some cases, if you click through to go to a partner’s site, you will automatically be sending your personal information to that partner. When this happens, you will still have to submit your application on the partner’s site. Any information you provide to the partner, whether through us or on your own, will be subject to their privacy practices and terms and conditions.
Co-Branded Services. Certain aspects of the Services may be provided to you in association with third parties (“Co-Branded Services”) such as our advertisers, business partners, or sponsors, and may require you to disclose Personal Information to them. Such Co-Branded Services will identify the third party. If you elect to register for products and/or services through the Co-Branded Services, you may be providing your information to both us and the third party. Any such information provided to the third party is subject to that third party’s privacy policies. Further, if you sign-in to a Co-Branded Service with a username and password obtained through the Services, your Personal Information may be disclosed to the identified third parties for that Co-Branded Service and will be subject to their posted privacy policies.
Sweepstakes, Contests and Promotions. We may offer sweepstakes, contests, and other promotions (“Promotion”) through the Services that may require registration. By participating in a Promotion, you are agreeing to official rules that govern that Promotion, which may contain specific requirements of you, including, allowing the sponsor of the Promotion to use your name, voice and/or likeness in advertising or marketing associated with the Promotion. If you choose to enter a Promotion, Personal Information may be disclosed to third parties or the public in connection with the administration of such Promotion, including, in connection with winner selection, prize fulfillment, and as required by law or permitted by the Promotion’s official rules, such as on a winners list.
When You Request A Credit Report And Score. We use other third parties to provide credit report and score data on our site. When you request a credit report and score on our site, we will share your personal information and sensitive information with the third party to verify your identity and provide that service. These third parties are prohibited from using your personal information for any other purpose including their own marketing.
Business Transfer. We may share your information, including your Personal Information and Usage Information with our parent, subsidiaries and affiliates for internal reasons. We also reserve the right to disclose and transfer all such information: (i) to a subsequent owner, co-owner or operator of the Services or applicable database; or (ii) in connection with a corporate merger, consolidation, restructuring, the sale of substantially all of our membership interests and/or assets or other corporate change, including, during the course of any due diligence process.
With Your Consent. There may also be other limited contexts in which we share specific types of personal information with your express consent.
We may also share with third parties de-identified or aggregated data we collect, such as de-identified or aggregated credit reports or scores, de-identified demographic information, or information about the computer or device from which you access the Service. We share such information for a variety of purposes, including analyzing Service usage, developing shared services, and improving our own products and features.
On our Services, we may serve you targeted advertisements based on your Personal Information, Demographic Information, Psychographic Information or Financial Information. Advertisers on our Services may include financial service providers (such as banks, credit card providers, insurance agents, stock brokers and mortgage lenders) and non-financial companies (such as cable providers, airlines, wireless carriers and software companies). Advertisers may assume that people who interact with, view, or click targeted ads meet certain targeting criteria - for example, women ages 18-24 with a certain minimum credit score. However, we do not provide advertisers any of your Personal Information or Financial Information when you view or interact with a targeted ad.
Information Collected by Mobile Applications. For any Mobile Applications, the information the Mobile Application collects may be stored locally on your device and may be transmitted to our (or our agents’) servers in the United States (collectively, the "Servers"). We will have access to your information or your information will be transferred to the Servers in any of the following circumstances:
Special Offers and Updates:
We will occasionally send you information on products, services, special deals, or promotions. Out of respect for your privacy, we present the option not to receive these types of communications by logging into your account and visiting the "My Profile" page and by following the unsubscribe instructions included in each promotional email.
We will send you strictly service-related announcements when it is necessary to do so. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance, we might send you an email.
Generally, you may not opt-out of these communications, which are not promotional in nature. If you do not wish to receive them, you have the option to deactivate your account.
Based upon the personal information you provide us, we will send you a welcoming email to verify your username and password. We will also communicate with you via email in response to your inquiries, to provide the services you request, and to manage your account.
Based upon the specific Services you have requested (examples include Services such as job search assistance, social services assistance, debt negotiation assistance, financial management and planning assistance and credit monitoring), we will communicate with you via email or text message to advise you of updates, status changes, requests for additional information, requests that you contact us by phone or log in to your account on our website, and similar notices that relate to events concerning the Services you have requested.
Generally, you may not opt-out of these communications, which are not promotional in nature. If you do not wish to receive them, you have the option to deactivate your account.
The Services may permit you to submit ideas, questions, comments, suggestions or other content, including Personal Information (collectively, “User Content”), that is publicly viewable (such as on public portions of your user profile). We or others may reproduce, publish, distribute or otherwise use User Content online or offline in any media or format (currently existing or hereafter developed). Others may have access to this User Content and may have the ability to share it with third parties across the Internet. Please think carefully before deciding what information you share, including Personal Information, in connection with your User Content.
You may review your information by logging into the secure website and clicking the button “My Profile” and scrolling through Information. You may add to or update your information by clicking the button “Update Information” and entering new or replacement information. Only information that you have previously provided to us may be updated. Information obtained from your credit report may not be updated but will automatically be updated as new information is received from the credit reporting agency.
We will retain your information for as long as your account is active or as needed to provide you services. We will retain and use your information as necessary to comply with our legal obligations, resolve disputes, and enforce our agreements.
We may contract with third-party advertising networks, publishers and other entities to advertise our products and services on websites not affiliated with us. Some of these ads are online behavioral advertising – which serve advertisements that are more likely to be of interest to you using non-personal behavioral information. Such ads may contain cookies that allow monitoring of websites (including our own websites that part of our own Services) and your response to our advertisements. Cookies placed by these companies do not collect Personal Information. We limit companies that place our ads from using information for any purpose other than to assist us in our advertising efforts. If you prefer to not receive targeted advertising, you can opt-out of network advertising programs that use your information. To do so, please visit: the Network Advertising Initiative industry’s opt-out page.
Please note that if you opt out, you may still receive online advertising from us. Opting out from a specific advertising provider means that the ads you do receive will not be based on your preferences or behavior.
In order for behavioral advertising opt-outs to work on your device, your browser must be set to accept cookies. If you delete cookies, buy a new Device, access our Services from a different device, login under a different screen name, or change web browsers, you will need to opt-out again. If your browser has scripting disabled, you do not need to opt out, as online behavioral advertising technology does not work when scripting is disabled. Please check your browser's security settings to validate whether scripting is active or disabled.
Please note that even if you choose to remove your information (opt-out), you will still see advertisements while you're browsing online. However, the advertisements you see may be less relevant to you and your interests. Additionally, many network advertising programs allow you to view and manage the interest categories they have compiled from your online browsing activities. These interest categories help determine the types of targeted advertisements you may receive. The NAI Opt-Out Page provides a tool that identifies its member companies that have cookies on your browser and provides links to those companies.
New categories of marketing communications might be added to the Communications and Monitoring Preferences page from time to time, but we will require your consent and notice before marketing to you in this new way. We give you the opportunity to "opt-out" of having Personal Information. For example, you can elect not to receive newsletters or alert emails. You can do this by logging into your account and visiting the "My Profile" page and you may also follow the unsubscribe instructions included in each email.
The Services are operated in the United States and intended for users located in the United States. If you are located anywhere outside of the United States, please be aware that information we collect, including, Personal Information, Demographic Information and Financial Information, will be transferred to, processed and stored in the United States. The data protection laws in the United States may differ from those of the country in which you are located, and your Personal Information, Demographic Information or Financial Information may be subject to access requests from governments, courts, or law enforcement in the United States according to laws of the United States. By using the Services or providing us with any information, you consent to this transfer, processing and storage of your information in the United States.
Merit Consumer Services services are not intended for anyone under the age of 18. Thus, we do not knowingly collect any Personal Information for anyone younger than the age of 18. We will delete any Personal Information collected that we later determine to be from a user younger than the age of 18. If you are a parent or guardian of a child under the age of 18 and believe he or she has disclosed Personal Information to us, please contact us at Legal@MeritConsumerServices.com via email or write to us at: Merit Consumer Services, Inc. Attention: Legal Department, 14002 E. 21st Street, Suite 420, Tulsa, OK 74134.
We maintain physical, electronic, and procedural safeguards that comply with federal regulations to protect Personal Information that we collect about you.
We follow generally accepted industry standards, for example Secure Socket Layer (SSL) and encryption technology to establish a secure connection between your computer and our servers, creating a private session.
We employ firewalls and other security technologies to protect our servers from external attack and securely store your Personal Information and Financial Information. We control access to this information via secure web pages, and limit access to only those employees or third parties on a need to know basis.
We test our systems regularly to insure that our security mechanisms are up to date.
We incorporate commercially reasonable safeguards to help protect and secure your Personal Information, Credit Report Information and Financial Information. However, no data transmission over the Internet, wireless transmission or electronic storage of information can be guaranteed to be 100% secure. Therefore we cannot guarantee the security of any information you transmit to us, and you use our Services and provide us with your information at your own risk.
If you have any questions about security on our Web site, you can send an email to us at Legal@MeritConsumerServices.com.
If there are any material changes in the way we treat Personal Information and/or Credit Report Information and/or Financial Information, we will notify you by sending a notice to the primary email address specified in your marketing preferences or by placing a prominent notice on our site prior to the change becoming effective.
California’s “Shine the Light” law, California Civil Code § 1798.83, requires certain businesses to respond to requests from California customers (those who have an established business relationship with us) asking about the business’ practices related to disclosing Personal Information to third parties for the third parties’ direct marketing purposes. We do not share customer information with third parties for their direct marketing purposes, and California’s Shine the Light law therefore does not apply to us.
For additional information, or if you have questions regarding this policy or privacy practices at Merit Consumer Services, please submit your questions or comments directly to Legal@MeritConsumerServices.com via email or write to us at: Merit Consumer Services, Inc., Attention: Legal Department, 14002 E. 21st Street, Suite 420, Tulsa, OK 74134.
Last date of revision: December 27, 2018