GeoStar and its Suppliers collect information relating to you and your use of the System in order to provide services and features that are easy to use and responsive to your needs. We use the term "Consumer Information" to refer to any personally identifiable or anonymous information relating to you or your use of any portion of our System. We use Consumer Information for a wide variety of purposes, including to enhance the System, to provide you with customer service and to make a wider range of products and services available to you. We also use your Consumer Information in aggregate, anonymous form to better understand how consumers use our System, which Services they use, and who is likely to be interested in receiving certain other services, and for various other business purposes.
We collect various categories of Consumer Information in connection with your use of the System and some of this information specifically identifies you or your household, including the following:
"Account Information" is information about you and your account, including your Contact Information and Service Information (both defined below) and other account related information that is necessary or useful for us to manage your account, your subscription to special features or services offered through the Services and privacy preferences. Account Information does not include any personally identifiable Usage Information. Account Information may be provided by you or a technology provider, service provider, third party website, or merchant involved in the development and/or provision of the functionality of the System. We use your personally identifiable Account Information to establish and service your account with us, bill you for Services (if applicable), offer you new products or services as available, assist you in the use of the System (including customer support), and for other business purposes.
"Contact Information" means information that allows someone to identify or contact you, including, for example: your name, address, telephone number and email address. When you register with GeoStar, you provide us with Contact Information. We may also collect other information about you, including anonymous demographic information that is not unique to you, such as your ZIP code, account settings, and preferences. Your ZIP Code, without more, is not considered Contact Information because the ZIP Code, by itself, does not identify you or permit someone to contact you.
"Service Information" means information necessary or useful to us in providing the System to you. Examples of Service Information include your home profile (including ZIP Code and home size), home system configuration (including appliances monitored by the System, schedule, mode, automation and Thermostat settings), Thermostats in your home (including types, model numbers and software version numbers), and the level of Service.
In the event that you contact us for customer support, we may also request that you provide additional Contact Information or Service Information relevant to the support requested by you. You are under no obligation to provide such information. However, we cannot guarantee that we can provide customer support in the event that relevant information related to the use of the System is not provided. We may retain communications relating to customer support, and information drawn from such communications, for statistical and reference purposes.
"Usage Information" is information including, but not limited to, data regarding actual indoor and outdoor temperature and humidity information, thermostat usage data such as heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning ("HVAC") relay status, runtimes, settings, time of events in home, HVAC diagnostic and usage logs from the HVAC system and alerts from the HVAC system, as well as information about your electrical usage relating to electrical loads monitored by the System, your overall household electrical usage, the interaction of your Thermostat/WebLink and third party devices and your use of the System. We receive this type of information from your Thermostat and the consumer web portal as you use the System. Usage Information can include your IP address, browser type, domain names, access times and referring website addresses and Wi-Fi service set identifier. This information is used by us for the operation of the System, to maintain quality of the System and Services, and to provide general statistics regarding use of the System. We may use personally identifiable Usage Information to provide you with feedback about your energy use, to help you set energy goals/budgets and track your progress, and to provide you customized content (such as tips and recommendations for reducing energy usage, trend monitoring, energy analytics, etc.). We may also use Usage Information for customer support, System restoration, and research and development activities.
Usage Information may also include information about your transactions with us and with some of our business partners. We may also combine this information with Account Information or other information that you have provided to us and with other information that is publicly available or that we receive from other reputable sources in order to make the System, our Services, and our communications with you more effectively targeted to your interests.
Sometimes we may "anonymize" Consumer Information by removing any identifier that can be associated with your personal Contact Information. Anonymous Consumer Information may be associated with or include other Account Information or Consumer Information that does not identify you. It allows us to understand usage of the System at a ZIP Code level. Anonymous Consumer Information helps us develop reports and analyses about how our customers use our System and for other research such as research regarding behavioral inferences. We may share anonymous Consumer Information and reports and analyses based on anonymous Consumer Information publically and with other companies. We also use anonymous Consumer Information to troubleshoot technical issues with our System and to compile statistics and reports of usage of the System. To enable technical support, anonymous Consumer Information may be identified by an anonymous random number, which is not connected to any of your personally identifiable Consumer Information. To further protect your privacy, anonymous Consumer Information does not include Contact Information or any other information that would identify any specific individual or household.
We may disclose aggregated, anonymous Consumer Information, and analyses and reports derived from such information to third parties including utilities, our service providers, Suppliers, advertisers, merchants, consumer and market research companies and other organizations. If the System is distributed by one of our distributors or strategic partners, they may have the same access to your Consumer Information as we do. They have agreed to treat such Consumer Information as outlined herein unless they have another agreement with you.
We may use independent contractors to assist with our operations. Such contractors may include programmers, consultants, billing and other agents, auditors, attorneys and accountants, collection agencies, and third parties who provide services necessary for us to provide the System or conduct legitimate business activities in connection with the System. Some of these contractors will have temporary access to our databases of Consumer Information. Their access to such information will be limited to specific tasks. We also use third parties to help with certain aspects of our operations, which may require disclosure of your Consumer Information to them. For example, we may use a third party to communicate with you (via telephone, email, or letter) about your account or upcoming features or services, to process and collect payment for your Services via your credit card, to generate demographic profiles based on Consumer Information of our customers, and to perform other work as part of or in relation to the System that we may need to outsource. We may require these contractors and third parties to agree to protect the confidentiality of your Consumer Information and to use it only as necessary to perform the services they are asked to perform. These contractors and third parties are responsible and liable if they misuse any Consumer Information.
If the System is provided through your utility provider or third party System provider, we may share Consumer Information with your utility provider or third party System provider in accordance with your agreement with such utility provider or third party System provider. In certain circumstances such parties may have direct access to Consumer Information. Their obligations with respect to such Consumer Information is governed by their agreement with you.