This Statement is effective as of 1 March, 2013. The previous version of this Statement is available here.
Your privacy is important to IBM; maintaining your trust is paramount to us.
This Statement discloses the information practices for IBM’s and our affiliates’ Web sites, including what type of information is gathered and tracked, how the information is used, and with whom the information is shared. It also describes how cookies, web beacons and other technologies may be used in our Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) offerings and software products.
This Statement applies to IBM Web sites that link to this Statement but does not apply to those IBM Web sites that have their own Privacy Statement. Additionally, it does not apply to instances where we merely process data on behalf of clients for their benefit, such as when we act as a web hosting service provider.
From time to time, we may supplement this Statement with additional information relating to a particular interaction we have with you.
International Business Machines Corporation complies with the U.S.- EU Safe Harbour framework and the U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbour framework as set forth by the U.S. Department of Commerce regarding the collection, use and retention of personal data from the European Union member countries and Switzerland. International Business Machines Corporation has certified that it adheres to the Safe Harbour Privacy Principles of notice, choice, onward transfer, security, data integrity, access and enforcement. To learn more about the Safe Harbour program, and to view International Business Machines Corporation's certification, please visit http://www.export.gov/safeharbor/.
Collection of Personal Information
You may choose to give us personal information directly in a variety of situations. For example, you may want to give us your name and contact information to communicate with you, to order a product, to process an order, to register for a service, to provide you with a subscription, or to do business with us if you are a supplier or a business partner. You may also provide your credit card details to buy something from us or may share a description of your education and work experience in connection with a job opening at IBM for which you wish to be considered. If you tell us that you do not want us to use your information to make further contact with you beyond fulfilling your request, we will respect your wishes.
We may also collect information relating to your use of our Web sites and SaaS offerings through the use of various technologies. For example, when you visit our Web sites or access our SaaS offerings, we may log certain information that your browser sends us, such as your IP address, browser type and language, access time, and referring Web site addresses, and we may collect information about the pages you view within our sites and other actions you take while visiting us. In addition, some of our software products include technologies that allow IBM to collect certain information about product use. We may also use such technologies to determine whether you've opened an e-mail or clicked on a link contained in an e-mail. Collecting information in this manner allows us to collect statistics about the usage and effectiveness of our Web sites, our software products and our SaaS offerings, personalise your experience and tailor our interactions with you. For details regarding the technologies we employ, see Cookies, Web Beacon and Other Technologies below.
From time to time, we may also collect information that pertains to you indirectly through other sources, such as list vendors. When we do so, we ask the vendors to confirm that the information was legally acquired by the third party and that we have the right to obtain it from them and use it.
The information that we collect, either directly or indirectly, may be combined to help us improve its overall accuracy and completeness and to help us better tailor our interactions with you.
Use of Personal Information
The following paragraphs describe in more detail how IBM may use your personal information.
Fulfilling your Transaction Request
If you request something from IBM, for example, a product or service, a call back, or specific marketing materials, we will use the information you provide to fulfil your request. To help us do this, we may share information with others, for instance, IBM's business partners, financial institutions, shipping companies, or postal or government authorities, such as Customs authorities, involved in fulfilment. In connection with a transaction, we may also contact you as part of our customer satisfaction surveys or for market research purposes.
Personalising your Experience on our Web Sites
We may use information we collect about you to provide you with a personalised experience on our Web sites, such as providing you with content in which you may be interested and making navigation on our sites easier.
We may use your personal information to support products or services you have obtained from us, such as notifying you of a product update or fix.
We also provide “Live Chat” sessions on our Web sites to assist you while you’re navigating through our sites; we will use personal information you provide via these sessions in accordance with this Privacy Statement.
The information you provide to IBM, as well as the information we have collected about you indirectly, may be used by IBM for marketing purposes. Before we do so, however, we will offer you the opportunity to choose whether or not to have your information used in this way. You may at any time choose not to receive marketing materials from us by following the unsubscribe instructions included in each e-mail you may receive, by indicating so when we call you, or by contacting us directly (please refer to “Privacy Questions and Access” below).
Some of our offerings may be co-branded, that is sponsored by both IBM and third parties. If you sign up for these offerings, be aware that your information may also be collected by and shared with those third parties. We encourage you to familiarise yourself with their privacy policies to gain an understanding of the manner in which they will handle information about you.
If you choose to “Email This Page” to a friend or colleague, we will ask for their name and e-mail address. We will automatically send a one-time e-mail sharing the page you indicated, but will not use that information for other purposes.
In connection with a job application or inquiry, whether advertised on an IBM Web site or otherwise, you may provide us with information about yourself, such as a resume. We may use this information throughout IBM in order to address your inquiry or consider you for employment purposes. Unless you tell us not to do so, we may keep the information for future consideration.
Monitoring or Recording of Calls, Chats and Other Interactions
Certain online transactions may involve you calling us or us calling you. They may also involve online chats. Please be aware that it is IBM's general practice to monitor and in some cases record such interactions for staff training or quality assurance purposes or to retain evidence of a particular transaction or interaction.
Mobile Applications and Use of Information in the Social Computing Environment
IBM makes available mobile applications for download from various mobile application marketplaces. IBM also provides social computing tools on some of its Web sites to enable online sharing and collaboration among members who have registered to use them. These include forums, wikis, blogs and other social media platforms.
When downloading and using these applications or registering to use these social computing tools, you may be asked to provide certain personal information. Registration information will be subject to and protected in accordance with this Privacy Statement, except for the information that is automatically made available to other participants as part of your profile. These applications and tools may also include supplemental privacy statements with specific information about collection and handling practices. Read those supplemental statements to understand what the tools and applications may do.
Protect the Rights and Property of IBM and Others
We may also use or share your information to protect the rights or property of IBM, our business partners, suppliers, clients, or others when we have reasonable grounds to believe that such rights or property have been or could be affected. In addition, we reserve the right to disclose your personal information as required by law and when we believe that disclosure is necessary to protect our rights, or the rights of others, or to comply with a judicial proceeding, court order, or legal process served on our Web sites.
Information for Business Partners
If you represent an IBM business partner, you may visit IBM Web sites intended specifically for IBM business partners. We may use information provided on that site to administer and develop our business relationship with you, the business partner you represent, and IBM business partners generally. For instance, this may involve using your information to send you details of IBM business partner programs. It may also include sharing certain information with other business partners (subject to any confidentiality obligations that may exist), or IBM customers or prospects. In connection with a particular transaction or program, we may also contact you as part of customer satisfaction surveys or for market research purposes.
Information for Suppliers
If you represent an IBM supplier, you may visit IBM Web sites intended specifically for use by IBM suppliers. We may use the information provided on that site in connection with entering into or performing a transaction with you. For example, this may include sharing information with other parts of IBM, IBM's business partners, customers, shipping companies, financial institutions and postal or government authorities involved in fulfilment. It may also be used to administer and develop our relationship with you, the supplier you represent, and other IBM suppliers generally.
Sharing of Personal Information and International Transfers
IBM is a global organisation with business processes, management structures and technical systems that cross borders. As such, we may share information about you within IBM and transfer it to countries in the world where we do business in connection with the uses identified above and in accordance with this Privacy Statement. Our Privacy Statement and our practices are designed to provide a globally consistent level of protection for personal information all over the world. This means that even in countries whose laws provide for less protection for your information, IBM will still handle your information in the manner described here.
In some cases, IBM uses suppliers located in various countries to collect, use, analyse, and otherwise process information on its behalf. It is IBM's practice to require such suppliers to handle information in a manner consistent with IBM's policies.
From time to time, we may disclose information that identifies you at an individual level and which we collected on our Web sites to other non-IBM entities that are not acting as our suppliers, such as our business partners. Except as described in this Privacy Statement, we will only do so with your prior consent. We do not sell or lease such information however.
Circumstances may arise where, whether for strategic or other business reasons, IBM decides to sell, buy, merge or otherwise reorganise businesses in some countries. Such a transaction may involve the disclosure of personal information to prospective or actual purchasers, or the receipt of such information from sellers. It is IBM’s practice to seek appropriate protection for information in these types of transactions.
Please be aware that in certain circumstances, personal information may be subject to disclosure to government agencies pursuant to judicial proceeding, court order, or legal process. We may also share your information to protect the rights or property of IBM, our business partners, suppliers or clients, and others when we have reasonable grounds to believe that such rights or property have been or could be affected.
Information Security and Accuracy
We intend to protect your personal information and to maintain its accuracy. IBM implements reasonable physical, administrative and technical safeguards to help us protect your personal information from unauthorised access, use and disclosure. For example, we encrypt certain sensitive personal information such as credit card information when we transmit such information over the Internet. We also require that our suppliers protect such information from unauthorised access, use and disclosure.
We will retain your registration information for as long as your account is active or as needed to provide you services. If you wish to request that we no longer use your registration information to provide you services contact us at NETSUPP@us.ibm.com. We will retain and use your registration information as necessary to comply with our legal obligations, resolve disputes, and enforce our agreements.
Cookies, Web Beacons and Other Technologies
As mentioned above, we collect information from your visits to our Web sites and your use of our SaaS offerings and our software products to help us gather statistics about usage and effectiveness, personalise your experience, and tailor our interactions with you. We do so through the use of various technologies, including one called "cookies". A cookie is a piece of data that a Web site can send to your browser, which may then be stored on your computer as a tag that identifies your computer. While cookies are often only used to measure Web site usage (such as number of visitors and duration of visit) and effectiveness (such as topics visitors are most interested in) and to allow for ease of navigation or use and, as such, are not associated with any personal information, they are also used at times to personalise a known visitor's experience to a Web site by being associated with profile information or user preferences. Over time this information provides valuable insight to help improve the user experience.
Cookies are typically categorised as "session" cookies or "persistent" cookies. Session cookies help you navigate through the Web site efficiently, keeping track of your progression from page to page so that you are not asked for information you have already provided during the current visit. Session cookies are stored in temporary memory and erased when the web browser is closed. Persistent cookies, on the other hand, store user preferences for current and successive visits. They are written on your device's hard disk, and are still valid when you restart your browser. We use persistent cookies, for example, to record your choice of language and country location.
Most browsers, by default, automatically permit cookies, but also give you the ability to control the majority of cookies, including whether or not to accept them and how to remove them. Look under the heading "Tools" (or similar heading) in your particular browser for information about controlling cookies. You can set your browser in most instances to notify you before you receive a cookie, giving you the chance to decide whether to accept it or not. You can also generally set your browser to turn off cookies. Cookies in our software products can be turned off in the product itself. Since cookies allow you to take advantage of some of our Web sites' features or features of our software products and SaaS offerings, we recommend that you leave them turned on. If you block, turn off or otherwise reject our cookies, some Web pages may not display properly or you will not be able, for instance, to add items to your shopping cart, proceed to checkout, or use any Web site services that require you to sign in. Some IBM Web sites, SaaS offerings and software products may also use Web beacon or other technologies to better tailor those sites to provide better customer service. These technologies may be in use on a number of pages across IBM's Web sites. When a visitor accesses these pages, a non-identifiable notice of that visit is generated which may be processed by us or by our suppliers. These Web beacons usually work in conjunction with cookies. If you don't want your cookie information to be associated with your visits to these pages or use of these products, you can set your browser to turn off cookies or turn off cookies in the product itself, respectively. If you turn off cookies, Web beacon and other technologies will still detect visits to these pages; however, they will not be associated with information otherwise stored in cookies.
We may also include Web beacons in marketing e-mail messages or our newsletters in order to determine whether messages have been opened and links contained within clicked on.
Some of our business partners set Web beacons and cookies on our site. In addition third-party social media buttons may log certain information such as your IP address, browser type and language, access time, and referring Web site addresses, and, if you are logged in to those social media sites, they may also link such collected information with your profile information on that site. We do not control these third party tracking technologies. Note that the "s81c.com" domain used to deliver static content on some of our Web sites is managed by IBM, and not by a third party.
IBM does not deliver third party online advertisements on our Web sites but we advertise our products and services on others' Web sites. Please familiarise yourself with those Web site operators' or network advertisers' privacy policies to understand their practices relating to advertising, including what type of information they may collect about your Internet usage. IBM does not provide any information relating to your usage of IBM Web sites to Web site operators or network advertisers. Some advertising networks we may use may be members of the Network Advertising Initiative (NAI). Individuals may opt-out of targeted advertising delivered by NAI member ad networks by visiting www.networkadvertising.org.
Links to Non-IBM Web Sites and Third Party Applications
To allow you to interact with other Web sites on which you may have accounts (such as Facebook and other social media sites) or join communities on such sites, we may provide links or embed third-party applications that allow you to login, post content or join communities from our Web sites.
We may also provide you with general links to non-IBM Web sites.
Your use of these links and applications is subject to the third parties’ privacy policies, and you should become familiar with the third party sites' privacy policies before using the links or applications.
IBM is not responsible for the privacy practices or the content of those other Web sites.
Notification of Changes
We will post a notice for 30 days at the top of this page notifying users when this Privacy Statement is updated or modified in a material way. If we are going to use your personal information in a manner different from that stated at the time of collection, we will notify you, and you will have a choice as to whether or not we can use your personal information in such a way.
Privacy Questions and Access
If you have a question about this Privacy Statement or IBM's handling of your information, you can send an email to the IBM Web site coordinator. You can also contact us at:
IBM's Corporate Privacy Office
1 New Orchard Road
Armonk, NY 10540
In certain cases, you may have the ability to view or edit your personal information online. In the event your information is not accessible online, and you wish to obtain a copy of particular information you provided to IBM, or if you become aware the information is incorrect and you would like us to correct it, contact us.
Before IBM is able to provide you with any information or correct any inaccuracies, however, we may ask you to verify your identity and to provide other details to help us to respond to your request. We will contact you within 30 days of your request.
If you no longer wish to receive marketing e-mails from IBM, please send an e-mail to NETSUPP@us.ibm.com or follow the unsubscribe instructions included in each marketing email.