Groupon’s new privacy policy collects and shares more personal info

Eighty-three million Groupon subscribers yesterday received an e-mail saying it is changing its privacy policies and terms of use to “accommodate our new products and services” in order to offer more relevant deals, including Groupon Now.

But in order to offer these more relevant deals, the daily deals site will collect and share more personal information, the Chicago Tribune pointed out today.

Other than collecting information such as registration and transaction info, the site will now collect info based on what social media platforms or mobile device being used to interact with Groupon sites. Groupon also released the terms and policies in a “plain English” version.

“For example, if you use a Groupon mobile application and your mobile device’s settings allow it, we may collect Mobile Location Information from your device. Our application may be designed to collect information even if you are not logged into the Groupon application or the Sites. If you have questions about the security and privacy settings of your mobile device, please refer to instructions from your mobile service provider or the manufacturer of your device to learn how to adjust your settings,” the privacy policy states.

Adding geolocation is “evidence that this will be an important part of [Groupon’s] business model in the years to come,” Darren Cahr, a partner specialising in social media law at Drinker Biddle & Reath in Chicago told the Tribune.

The company’s definition of “personal information” has also been broadened to include “interests and habits” and will also share personal information with travel site Expedia if users subscribe to receive travel deals.

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