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The Highway Star

Privacy Policy

Who we are

The Highway Star is a non-profit organization operating under the laws of British Columbia, Canada. Our website address is: https://www.thehighwaystar.com.

What personal data we collect and why we collect it

Visitors

For all visitors to our website we log the customary technical data for the purpose of troubleshooting and collecting statistics. For each request your web browser makes to our server (i.e. for each page and each image viewed) we record:

  • IP address;
  • timestamp;
  • HTTP request received;
  • numerical server response code;
  • length of content served;
  • referrer URI as sent by your browser;
  • user agent string as sent by your browser.

This information is stored in raw logs for 4 weeks. During those 4 weeks we can tell, for example, that at given time somebody from a certain IP address viewed the tourdates page and they were probably using Chrome browser to do it. Raw information is also being regularly processed to generate aggregate statistics, which are kept beyond this 4 weeks limit. After 4 weeks we can only tell, for example, how many views the tourdates page had or what percentage of our visitors used Chrome browser. These statistics are generated by AWStats.

All analytics is done in-house, on our own server, and we do not share this information with anybody. We also do not track or fingerprint your browser, nor discriminate against VPNs, proxies, Tor, or other anonymizing technologies. You are welcome.

Comments

When visitors leave comments on the site we collect the data shown in the comments form, and also the visitor’s IP address and browser user agent string to help spam detection. This data is being submitted to Akismet, which helps us to weed out spam in the comments (and spam accounts for almost 97% of our comments, you just don’t get to see it). Akismet’s privacy policy can be found here.

Your contact information

When you submit a story for publication via email or other means, we usually give a credit at the end of the post. Please let us know if you prefer your name or nickname not to be mentioned. We do not publish or share email addresses or any other contact details without your explicit permission.

Image submission

If you submit images to the website, beware of sending images with embedded metadata (EXIF) included. Visitors to the website can download and extract any metadata from images on the website. This EXIF metadata can incorporate a wealth of privacy sensitive information, including time, date, GPS coordinates, serial number of the device, and so on.

Cookies

If you leave a comment on our site you will receive a cookie saving your name, email address, and website. These cookies are for your convenience so that you do not have to fill in your details again when you leave another comment. These cookies will expire after one year. Feel free to clear the cookies or browse in incognito mode if you prefer privacy over convenience.

Embedded content from other websites

Articles on this site may include embedded content (e.g. Youtube videos, Soundcloud audio clips, etc.). Embedded content from other websites behaves in the exact same way as if you have visited that other website.

These websites may collect data about you, use cookies, embed additional third-party tracking, and monitor your interaction with that embedded content, including tracing your interaction with the embedded content if you have an account and are logged in to that website.

Because of that, we do not use any social media buttons, and generally try to limit embedded content to a necessary minimum.

Who we share your data with

This one is simple: apart from comment data being shared with Akismet as described above, nobody. Being a non-profit, we don’t have to pretend to serve you while actually vacuuming your personal data and selling it to the highest bidder (like some other sites we all know). We just provide a public service.

How long we retain your data

If you leave a comment, the comment and its metadata are retained indefinitely. Ordinary visitor logs are retained for 4 weeks.

Where your data is stored

All the data is stored on our dedicated bare metal server, which is located in Germany. Offsite backups are stored in Amazon S3 cloud service located (to the best of our knowledge) in Ireland. All offsite backups are encrypted via GPG with 2048 bit RSA key, so neither Amazon, nor any other 3rd party can see what’s inside. Only we have the keys.



Last updated: Sat Jun 23 16:00:34 UTC 2018 (edited for clarity)

Previous revisions:
Wed Jun 13 18:42:12 UTC 2018 (initial revision)

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