Friday 24 June 2011

Windows Phone 7 – Terms of Use

Derek Knight pointed out an article that draws attention to certain aspects of Google’s Terms & Conditions for the use of an Android based phone:

Essentially, both Apple and Google are quite aggressive about how they go about collecting, storing, and using data on any mobile device that is on their platform.

Since we carry a Windows Phone 7 device, we went back to the Terms Of Use that Microsoft has on the phone:

In the TOU note Point 9 that indicate data is collected, but

In order to operate and provide the service, we collect certain information about you. We use and protect that information as described in the Microsoft Online Privacy Statement, In particular, we may access or disclose information about you, including the content of your communications, in order to: (a) comply with the law or respond to lawful requests or legal process; (b) protect the rights or property of Microsoft or our customers, including the enforcement of our agreements or policies governing your use of the service; or (c) act on a good faith belief that such access or disclosure is necessary to protect the personal safety of Microsoft employees, customers or the public.

The service is a private computer network that Microsoft operates for the benefit of itself and its customers. Microsoft retains the right to block or otherwise prevent delivery of any type of email or other communication to or from the service as part of our efforts to protect the service, protect our customers or stop you from breaching this contract. The technology or other means we use may hinder or break your use of the service.

In order to provide you the service, we may collect certain information about service performance, your machine and your service use. We may automatically upload this information from your machine. This data will not be used to personally identify you. You may read about this information collection in more detail in the privacy statement at

Personal information collected through the service may be stored and processed in the United States or any other country in which Microsoft or its affiliates, subsidiaries or agents maintain facilities. By using the service, you consent to any such transfer of information outside of your country. Microsoft abides by the safe harbor framework as set forth by the U.S. Department of Commerce regarding the collection, use and retention of data from the European Union.

In the Privacy Policy we find:

Uses of Information

Additional Details

  • We use the information we collect to provide the services you request. Our services may include the display of personalized content and advertising.
  • We use your information to inform you of other products or services offered by Microsoft and its affiliates, and to send you relevant survey invitations related to Microsoft services.
  • We do not sell, rent, or lease our customer lists to third parties. In order to help provide our services, we occasionally provide information to other companies that work on our behalf.

For the most part, the Microsoft TOU and Privacy Policy are standard fair across many types of services providers.

It is _always_ a good idea to read the Terms & Conditions of any services provider. When we discover terms that are very invasive such as the Google and Apple terms we need to evaluate the risks versus benefits very carefully.

And, as always for us Canadians, the Patriot Act is something to be aware of on behalf of our clients when it comes time to discuss putting data in the Cloud.

Hat Tip: Derek Knight

Philip Elder
Microsoft Small Business Specialists
Co-Author: SBS 2008 Blueprint Book

*Our original iMac was stolen (previous blog post). We now have a new MacBook Pro courtesy of Vlad Mazek, owner of OWN.

Windows Live Writer

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