Updated 30 August 2023
Versta Research (“Versta,” “we,” “us,” or “our”) is a marketing research and public opinion polling firm headquartered in the State of Illinois in the United States. As researchers, we are committed to respecting your privacy and protecting your personal information.
“Personal information” means information that can be used to identify you as an individual person, such as your full name, postal address, or email address. It also includes combinations of information that are reasonably capable of uniquely identifying you as an individual person, such as the combination of your ZIP code, gender, and full date of birth.
Message from Our Lead Researcher
As a professional researcher for more than 25 years, I take personal information very seriously. First and foremost, all of our researchers are directed to minimize the personal information we gather in our studies. If we don’t need it, we don’t ask for it. When we have to use personal information, we limit its use, restrict access to it, store it securely, and delete it when we’re done.
Trust and transparency are important principles for responsible research. We are glad you are taking an active role in reading about our privacy practices. If you ever choose to withdraw your consent from our research, we will always respect your decision.
Thank you for your trust in us,
Joe Hopper, Ph.D.
Collection of Personal Information
The personal information we may collect or receive broadly falls into the following categories:
Personal Information from Research Participants
Participants in surveys, in-depth interviews, focus groups, and other research conducted by Versta may sometimes be asked to provide personal information as part of our research. This may include contact information, demographic information, health information, financial information, employment information, and education information. We limit the collection of personal information from research participants to what is necessary for our specific research and analytic purposes. This personal information is provided with your consent as a research participant.
Personal Information from Clients
A client may provide us with personal information about you as part of research we are conducting on their behalf for their business purposes in connection with a written contract. This may include contact information, demographic information, and information about your relationship with them, like the number of years you have been a customer. We retain, use, and disclose this personal information only for the specific purpose of performing the services specified in the research contract.
Personal Information from Other Sources
From time to time, we may obtain information about you from research panels of which you are a member, from consumer and professional databases, from public databases, and from information you choose to make public. We always seek to confirm that these sources have your opt-in permission to disclose your information to companies like Versta for research purposes or that this information is publicly available.
Personal Information about Clients, Service Providers, and Suppliers
As a client, service provider, or supplier, you or your employer may provide us with certain personal information in order for us to service your research project. This may include business contact information, contact preferences, and payment information.
Information Collected Automatically
We may automatically collect information about the devices you use to interact with our Sites, which includes, without limitation, your Internet protocol (IP) address, device type, browser type, operating system, Internet service provider, date and time of your visit, the pages you view, and other standard server log information. We may also collect browsing information through cookies, web beacons, pixel tags, clear gifs, and other similar technologies. The information automatically collected may be associated with a unique identifier, as well as with any other personal information you have provided.
When Contacting Us
When you communicate with us via our website, phone, email, or otherwise, you may be asked to provide your name, email address, phone number, and similar personal information. We will use this information to respond to your request.
Subscribers to the Versta Research Newsletter must provide their name and email address in order for us to deliver your newsletter electronically and maintain your subscription.
Use of Personal Information
We may use the personal information we collect for one or more of the following business purposes, in accordance with the reason for which it was collected:
- Administering our research, including inviting you to participate, scheduling your participation, and fulfilling any promised honoraria or incentives.
- Performing our research analysis, where incorporation of personal information is necessitated by the research design.
- Preventing fraud and potentially prohibited or illegal activities.
- Responding to inquiries and fulfilling requests, including unsubscribe requests.
- Servicing your client account.
- Engaging, evaluating, and using your services as a service provider or supplier.
- Providing, operating, optimizing, and maintaining our Sites.
- Sending you the Versta Research Newsletter.
- Complying with applicable laws, regulations, codes, and industry standards and practices.
- Meeting legal requirements, including complying with court orders, valid discovery requests, valid subpoenas, and other appropriate legal mechanisms.
- Responding to lawful requests by public authorities, including to meet national security or law enforcement requirements.
- Establishing, exercising, or defending legal claims, including, without limitation, in order to protect the safety of an individual, or to protect our rights and/or property.
- Prosecuting and defending a court, arbitration, or similar legal proceeding.
- For recruitment purposes, if you have applied for a role at Versta.
Disclosure of Personal Information
We may share personal information we collect as part of bona fide research with the client commissioning the research in connection with a written contract. This information may be combined with other information you have provided as a research participant, like your preferences or opinions.
If we pledge to you that your participation in a research project is anonymous, we will not share personal information we collect with the client commissioning that research project, unless you have given us your consent to release your personal information.
In addition, we may disclose personal information:
- To service providers and authorized third-party vendors that help us with specialized services, including hosting, email deployment, printing and mailing services, incentive and honoraria processing, transcription, data processing, advanced analytics, billing, project collaboration, and client relationship management.
- To suppliers who are bound by contractual obligations to keep personal information confidential and secure, and use it only for the purposes for which we disclose it to them in accordance with this policy.
- To prevent fraud against us, our research participants, or our clients.
- To a potential buyer or other successor (and its agents and advisors) in the event of a merger, divestiture, restructuring, reorganization, dissolution, or other sale or transfer of some or all of our assets, whether as a going concern or as part of bankruptcy, liquidation, or similar proceeding, in which personal information held by us is among the assets transferred.
- For legal purposes to any competent law enforcement body, regulatory body, government agency, court, or other third party where we believe disclosure is necessary as a matter of applicable law or regulation; to exercise, establish, or defend our legal rights; or to protect our rights, property, or safety, or the rights, property, or safety of any other person.
- For any other purpose disclosed by us when you provide the information.
- By your request or at your direction.
Cookies and Tracking Technologies
Cookies are small bits of information that are stored by your computer’s web browser. Pixel tags are very small images or small pieces of data embedded in images, also known as “web beacons” or “clear GIFs,” that can recognize cookies, the time and date a page is viewed, a description of the page where the pixel tag is placed, and similar information from your computer or device.
We may use first- and third-party cookies, web beacons, and similar technologies for technical reasons to distinguish you from other users of our website, to help protect our Sites from fraud, to enable the efficient operation of our Sites, to enhance the ease of use of our Sites, and to gather statistics on how people use our Sites.
You may be able to refuse, disable, or delete cookies via your web browser settings. Because each web browser is different, please consult the instructions provided by your web browser (typically in the “help” section). If you choose to disable this function, your experience on our Sites may be diminished and some features may not work as they were intended.
Some web browsers transmit “do not track” signals to websites. Because the “do not track” browser-based standard signal has yet to gain widespread acceptance, we currently do not take action in response to these signals.
We maintain appropriate and reasonable administrative, organizational, technical, and physical safeguards to protect the personal information we collect from loss, theft, unauthorized access, misuse, modification, alteration, disclosure, or destruction.
However, you should keep in mind that our Sites are run on software, hardware, and networks, any component of which may, from time to time, require maintenance or experience problems or breaches of security beyond our control. No encryption method, data storage system, or transmission of data over the Internet or any other public network can be guaranteed to be 100% secure and we cannot guarantee the absolute security of personal information transmitted to us. We are also not responsible for any errors by individuals in transmitting personal information to us.
We retain personal information for no longer than is necessary to fulfill the purposes of its collection. If you are participating in a research study, this is typically six to nine months. We may also retain personal information to protect ourselves against legal claims, to comply with research standards and best practices, and for the purposes of satisfying any legal, accounting, contractual, or reporting requirements. To determine the appropriate retention period for personal information, we consider the amount, nature, and sensitivity of the personal information, the potential risk of harm from unauthorized use or disclosure of such personal information, and the applicable legal requirements.
We are headquartered in the United States and may use servers or service providers located in other countries. Personal information that we collect about you will be transferred to the United States, or to another country in which we (or our service providers) operate. These countries may have different data protection laws than your country. By using our Sites and providing us with personal information, you consent to such transfer and processing of your personal information by us in accordance with this Policy.
Links to Other Websites
We do not knowingly collect any personal information from children under the age of 16. If we learn we have collected or received personal information from a child under the age of 16, we will delete that information and deletion will occur without notice. If you are a parent or guardian and you believe we have personal information from or about your child, please contact us.
Your Choices and Opt-Outs
Opting Out of Survey Invitations and Other Communications
You may opt out of receiving invitations and reminders for a specific research study by clicking the unsubscribe link near the bottom of your email invitation. You may also opt out of all communications from us by using our Do Not Contact form. Newsletter subscribers can use our Newsletter Subscription form to update their contact information or unsubscribe.
We promptly fulfill opt-out requests. Please note that some transactional communications (such as sending you an honorarium or incentive) may still be necessary for the fulfillment of our obligations.
Accessing, Reviewing, Correcting, or Deleting Your Personal Information
Upon request, we permit any research participant to access, correct, or update personal information we have about them.
Where granted by applicable data protection law, you may also have the following rights in relation to personal information:
- Request access to personal information that we have collected and retained about you for the purposes of reviewing, modifying, or requesting deletion of the personal information.
- Request an electronic copy of the personal information we have about you and to have any inaccuracies corrected.
- Restrict, or object to, how we process personal information we have about you.
- Withdraw consent to processing personal information we have about you.
- Not receive unlawful discriminatory treatment by us for exercising your privacy rights.
You can submit a privacy request by using our Contact form. In your request, please be specific. We will require a stringent verification process to verify your identity to a reasonable degree of certainty before processing your request, to minimize the harm that might be posed to you by unauthorized access or deletion of your personal information. For example, we may need to ask for your contact information, date and time of your participation in our research, certain survey responses, or information from your survey invitation. If we must request additional information from you outside of information that is already maintained by us, we will only use it for the purposes of verifying your identity, or for security and fraud-prevention purposes.
We will make reasonable attempts to promptly investigate, comply with, or otherwise respond to your requests as may be required by applicable law. Different laws may prevent us from providing access to your personal information or otherwise fully complying with your request depending upon the circumstances and the request, such as where producing your information may reveal the identity of someone else.
If you seek to exercise rights under applicable data protection legislation about personal information we have received about you from our clients or other sources, like research panels of which you are a member, we will also forward these requests to the relevant party, as can be reasonably determined, in accordance with our contractual arrangements.
We can or will delete your personal information only if there is no statutory obligation or prevailing right of ours to retain it. We might need to keep certain information for recordkeeping purposes, to prevent fraud, or to complete a transaction you began prior to requesting a change or deletion.
We will decline to process requests that are manifestly unfounded, excessive, fraudulent, or are not otherwise required under applicable law.
Updates to This Policy
We may update this Policy from time to time, and we reserve the right to make changes to this Policy at any time. The provisions contained in this Policy supersede all previous notices or policies regarding our privacy practices with respect to our Sites. All updates and amendments are effective immediately upon notice, which we may give by any means, including, but not limited to, by posting a revised version of this Policy or other notice on our Sites. The most recent version of the Policy is reflected by the version date located at the top of this page. We recommend that you review the Policy each time you visit the Sites to stay informed of our privacy practices.
If you have any questions about this Policy or our practices related to the handling of personal information, please contact us.