It’s Not the Size of the Privacy Policy That Matters, It’s The Language

So, you’ve started an online business and you’re not sure what kind of privacy policy you need. Can it be a free one you find online? Should it be filled with lots of legalese to make it sound more professional? How long does your privacy policy need to be?

If these questions have been on your mind, you’re about to find out the answers from Aaron Kelly – an Internet law specialist who has helped hundreds of companies –both big and small – with their online contract needs.

Q: Is it fine to just use a free online privacy policy I find on the Internet?

A: Sure, it’s fine; but the real question is whether or not it’s smart to do so. If you don’t have a legal background, it’s not advisable to grab any ol’ free contract you find online. Who knows what provisions may be hidden within the legalese. By using a free online privacy policy, you may actually find yourself in a lot of hot legal water since you didn’t understand the provisions contained within.

Q: Should the privacy policy I use be filled with tons of legal-ease?

A: Most people think that having a privacy policy that’s filled with lots of big legal words is the best way to go, but they’re actually wrong. Laws are changing, and these days, it’s more important to have a privacy policy that people – even ones to haven’t attended law school – can understand.
The best privacy policies are ones that are easily understandable, yet contain the necessary provisions to protect you against legal action.

Point in case, Google. Just recently, they launched a huge public relations campaign to unveil their new, shorter, easily-understandable privacy policy. If laws weren’t headed that way, the Internet mega-corp wouldn’t have made the move. In other words, the fact that Google is sprucing up their online privacy policy to be digestible by the masses, means that you, too, should be doing the same thing.

Q: How long should a privacy policy be?

A: The length of a privacy policy is directly related to the type of website it governs. If you have a simple website that only collects data via a contact form, you’re privacy policy will be much shorter than someone who operates an e-commerce site.

Internet law is changing, and while there is currently no explicit statute that governs all online privacy, there are several different rules which make having an online privacy policy a must for most websites in operation today.

If you have a website and have yet to protect it with an attorney-approved, easy-to-understand privacy policy, get one soon.
It could save you a giant legal headache down the road. And remember, it’s not the size of the policy that matters, instead, it’s the readability that matters.

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