Academic Knowledge Privacy Policy

Academic Knowledge is a website belonging to All Answers Limited, a UK registered company (No. 4964706) and registered data controller (No. Z1821391). We can be contacted using the details given at the bottom of this page.

This privacy policy tells you what to expect when we collect and process your personal data, the rights that are available to you and how you can exercise them.

What we do with your data

We will never sell your personal data for any reason, though sometimes it will be necessary to transfer your data to a third party to be processed. Your data is processed for certain specific reasons:

Applicants' data

When you apply to become a writer for us, we collect a range of data to process your application, which is tracked using a unique ID number. Some of this is collected so that we can contact you about your application, such as your name, email address and phone number. However, we also collect data which helps us to assess your application, such as details of your qualifications, copies of any transcripts or degree certificates, your country of birth, the country you are applying from, as well as your CV, cover letter and biography. Your address is collected so that it can be added to your account if your application is successful. In order to prevent fraudulent or misleading applications, we also gather proof of identification and proof that you live at the address you have given us.

Some of this data is processed via a company called Zendesk, who provide a ticket management system which helps us to process applications more efficiently. You can read Zendesk's privacy policy here.

Researchers' data

If your application is successful, much of the data you gave us at the application stage will be used to create your researcher account. We also generate a unique ID number associated with the new account and use your email address as a username so that you can log in.

Any messages you send or receive through your online account are stored for future reference and so that we can communicate efficiently with you. On occasion, we might find it expedient to use your phone number to text you about an order you are involved with or that you might like to work on. We do this using a service called Esendex. You can read Esendex's privacy policy here.

In order to pay you after you have completed an order, we need to store your bank account details. It is also necessary to know your address so that invoices can be created, and these invoices are retained for our own financial records.

We keep a record of your performance (referred to as the 'AK score') so that we can provide constant feedback and more efficiently delegate orders to meet our customers' needs. This incorporates a number of factors, such as quality of work, punctuality, helpfulness and so on. A more detailed explanation of how this score is calculated can be found in the Academic Knowledge Help Centre.

From time to time, we might email you our researcher newsletter, which provides information and updates about the company. We do this using a service called Mailchimp. You can read Mailchimp's privacy policy here. If you have recently been active on the system, we also send emails about orders you might be interested in completing.

In order to establish the facts in case of a legal dispute, we archive anything that might be relevant to the negotiation or performance of a contract (such as communications with employees). Access to this archived data is strictly controlled so that only a few privileged employees can see it, and it is only ever used for the specific purpose of supporting a legal case. Some of this data may be shared with our legal counsel in the unlikely event of a dispute.

Cookies

Our websites set cookies in your browser to improve your experience and to make everything run smoothly. For more information, please read our cookie policy.

Your rights

By law, you have a number of rights available to you when you give us your personal data. You can ask for access to any of your personal data that we hold; you can ask us to correct any inaccuracies in your personal data; you can ask us to delete your personal data where there is no longer any good reason for us to have it; you can object to the processing of your data in some cases; and, where you have given consent, you are able to withdraw that consent at any time. Under certain circumstances, such as if the data is material to legal proceedings, you can also ask us to temporarily stop processing your personal data. Where your data is automatically processed, you can also ask for a copy of your data in a machine-readable format.

If you would like to exercise any of your rights listed above, please send your request to our data protection officer at [email protected] After we have received proof of your identity, we will respond to your request within one calendar month.

If you are not happy with how we have handled your personal data, you have the right to lodge a complaint with the Information Commissioner's Office.

How we keep your data safe

Security measures

We use a variety of technical and organisational measures to make sure your personal data is stored and transmitted securely. For example, we make diligent use of encryption whenever personal data is being transmitted to a third party and we make regular backups in case the original copy of your data is lost. All of our core database functionality, including most of your personal data, is processed using Amazon Web Services (AWS), who are a cloud computing provider. AWS are certified to be ISO 27001 compliant, which is the gold standard in information security, so you can rest assured that your personal data is secure and protected.

If you communicate with us by email over the Internet, you should be aware that the nature of the Internet is such that unencrypted communication may not be secure and may pass through several different countries en route to us. Please do not email us with confidential or sensitive information. We cannot accept responsibility for unauthorised access to your information that is outside our control.

Data retention policy

We only hold on to your data for as long as we need it to fulfil one of the purposes it was originally collected for, such as to provide a service, to gather feedback or to comply with a legal obligation. This means that retention policies for your data can differ considerably depending on the context and the way it is used. When deciding on a retention policy for any type of data, we use the following criteria:

  • How long is the data needed for? - For example, if you have not logged in to your account for several years, we will remove you from our mailing lists.
  • What did we say we would do with the data when we collected it? - If the purposes for which we originally collected the data are no longer relevant, there is no need to keep it.
  • Do we have a legal obligation to keep the data? - For example, financial information needs to be kept for a minimum amount of time for tax reasons.
  • Does holding the data carry an inherent risk? - In the unlikely event of a data breach, we want to ensure that nothing sensitive is stolen. We will therefore have reduced retention periods for data we consider to be sensitive.

However, in general, we securely archive most of your account data after two years of inactivity (see 'Researchers' data' above) and then permanently delete all of your personal data after six years of inactivity.

Transfers to countries outside the EEA

Some of the third parties we use to process your data are based in countries which do not have the same standard of data protection laws that EU citizens enjoy. In these cases, we have made sure there are safeguards in place to protect your rights and interests. For example, Mailchimp are located in the United States, but we have made sure that they comply with the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework, which guarantees the same level of protection.

Children

If you are 13 or under, you must have permission from a parent or guardian before you give us your personal information. If we find that we have received information from you without the appropriate consent, we reserve the right to cancel all transactions and services and remove all personal data that you have supplied. You will be able to re-submit the information when you have the required permission.

Links to other websites

Our websites may contain links to external third-party websites. We are not responsible for the privacy and security of these websites unless they belong to All Answers Limited. This privacy policy applies only to Academic Knowledge.

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