terms and policies

Privacy Policy

Privacy on Ask.fm

We want you to know exactly how your personal information is being looked after by Ask.fm as it's really important. If you are under 18 please get an adult to help you out if there's anything you don't understand, or ask us to explain it.

Here are some of the things we cover:

  • Collecting information from you
  • Using the information that we collect
  • The ways you can access and change your information
  • How we keep your information safe

Who is Ask.fm?

Ask.fm is currently operated through the company Sia Ask.fm (LLC), registration number 40103431981 (the Company). The Company was registered on 29 June 2011 in Riga, Latvia and exists under the laws of Latvia. The Company's registered office is at Zala St 1, Riga, LV-1010, Latvia. Latvia is in the European Union. The Company is also data keeper and operator under Latvian law.

Being Anonymous

The fact that you can send messages without other people knowing who you are is part of what makes Ask.fm unique and so much fun. It means that you can ask things that you might be too embarrassed or shy to say if anyone knew it was you. People are often bolder and more honest when they are anonymous, whether they're asking a question anonymously, or answering a question where they don't know who's asked it.

The thing is though, that it also means that when you receive questions or comments, you may not know who they come from either!

Some people don't like receiving things from people if they don't know who they are. So every member can choose not to receive questions from anonymous users on the 'Settings' page.

We all know that some people might abuse the option to be anonymous by being mean or by saying horrible things because they know you don't know who they are, but we will take steps to stop them from spoiling it for everyone else.

We may assist the Police or other law enforcement agencies with their requests to the extent required by law – otherwise, will not tell anyone who you are if you want to remain anonymous.

Occasionally, a member may ask us if we can tell them the IP address of someone who sent them an anonymous message. Unfortunately, we are not able to give out that information.

For more information, see our Abuse Policy, our Terms of Use and our Safety and Security Essentials.

Legal stuff

In order to do what we can to keep your personal information safe, at Ask.fm we have developed this Privacy Policy to let you know what personal information we collect and how we use it.

This Privacy Policy applies to your use of the Ask.fm website. You should also read our Terms of Use (we know they are long, but you should really read them at least once). When you use our website, you are agreeing to our rules and policies and allow us to collect and store your personal information.

We might change our Privacy Policy at any time, so you should check the site regularly for updates and to understand how we use your information. If we make a big change, we will let you know.

You must not access or use the site if you do not agree with our Privacy Policy.

Ask.fm users and members

What information does Ask.fm collect if I decide to join the Ask.fm social community?

To become a member, you will have to complete our online registration form, where we ask you to provide us with some key information about you, such as your name, your email address, your date of birth and which country you live in. You can also provide other details about yourself if you want, but you don't have to. Because you control your member profile, you can see the personal information you've provided to us by accessing your “Profile” page, which gives you the chance to correct or update your information at any time by just logging in to Ask.fm.

Once you have created a profile, we will automatically track your IP address and email addresses. We are also able to track IP addresses generally, even if a user is unregistered.

Does Ask.fm collect any information about me if I am not a signed-up member?

We don't collect any personal information about visitors to our site who are not members, although we will be able to track their IP address. If you do visit us without becoming a member, we will place cookies on the web browser on your computer (or other device) for the length of your visit. For more information about cookies generally, see our Cookies Policy.

What does Ask.fm do with information that I might put on the site?

We may use things that you post publicly on Ask.fm in advertising and promotional materials on our partner sites and partner products. This is so that we can improve our site and make the site work best for you.

We may use your personal information to resolve disputes, troubleshoot problems and enforce our Terms of Use.

We may use or share personal information to investigate, prevent, or take action regarding illegal activities, involving potential threats to the physical safety of a person, prevention of fraud, and violations of the Ask.fm website or as required by law.

We do respond to legal requests and court orders and exercise our legal rights to defend claims against us. Sometimes, as a result of these requests or orders, we are required to give the police or other regulatory bodies your personal information and anything you have posted.

Does Ask.fm collect any additional information if I use the Ask.fm mobile app?

The Ask.fm app offers you the opportunity to stay in touch with your friends on Ask.fm no matter where you are, by using your mobile device.

When you use your mobile or a tablet, we won't collect any more information than if you were using a computer or laptop.

Can Ask.fm gather information from other sites like Facebook and Twitter?

If you have registered on one of our partner websites, you will always be given the option of whether you want information about you to be shared between those sites. It's completely up to you.

Is any other information collected?

If you contact our Customer Support team via the Feedback page, we will receive your email address and we may track your IP address. We will keep records of our communication with you, including any complaints that we receive from you about other users via the Report Button (and from other users about you).

Will Ask.fm contact me?

We will let you know if we make any significant changes to this policy or any of our other policies, including our Terms of Use. We may also contact you if you have filed a complaint or report or if someone has made any claim or report against you.

In addition, on your “Settings” page, we offer you the opportunity to receive emails from us about the use of the Ask.fm website or other services. We also send questions of the day, which might help you to start up conversations. Otherwise, we will only contact you if you contact us.

Does Ask.fm use my personal information for any other purpose?

We may use things that you post publicly on Ask.fm in advertising and promotional materials on our partner sites and partner products. This is so that we can improve our site and make the site work best for you.

We may use your personal information to resolve disputes, troubleshoot problems and enforce our Terms of Use.

We may use or share personal information to investigate, prevent, or take action regarding illegal activities, involving potential threats to the physical safety of a person, prevention of fraud, and violations of the Ask.fm website or as required by law.

We do respond to legal requests and court orders and exercise our legal rights to defend claims against us. Sometimes, as a result of these requests or orders, we are required to give the Police or other regulatory bodies your personal information and anything you have posted.

Other Ask.fm users

What can other Ask.fm users see when they visit the site?

Anyone who visits the Ask.fm site will be able to see your user name and any information that you post on your Profile, including photos. So, when you post anything on your Profile, make sure you remember this! Any questions that you receive into your inbox cannot be seen by anyone else until you reply to them. If you do reply, then the question and your reply will be posted onto your profile, where they can be seen by anyone who visits the site.

Can I use someone else's information that I come across on the site?

You are not allowed to use other users' information in order to try to make money out of them, to spam anyone, to bully or harass anyone, or to make any threats or to try to harm anyone. Ask.fm reserves the right to deactivate the accounts of any members who try to do any of these things or who don't keep to our Terms of Use.

What information does Ask.fm collect about my friends and contacts?

You can choose to invite your friends to join Ask.fm, so that you can stay in touch with them on the site. To make it easier to search and find friends and people you know on Ask.fm, users may search for other members using first and last name, email address and location. If you want to invite your friends and contacts to become an Ask.fm member, we will send an email or an SMS invitation from Ask.fm in your name to your friends and contacts encouraging them to sign up to Ask.fm.

If any of the people you've invited don't register within a few days, Ask.fm may occasionally send reminder emails or an SMS on your behalf to those individuals. You can choose to invite all your friends or only a select few by simply un-ticking the names of those friends you don't want to invite. It's up to you to ensure that your friends are happy to receive your Ask.fm invite. Otherwise, the only information we hold about your friends and contacts is what you tell us through the site. So, again, think carefully about your posts!

Third parties

Does Ask.fm sell my information to other parties?

No. We don't sell or give out any personal information specifically about you to any third party. (If we were to sell our business, the buyer would take over all information that we have collected and kept.)

Does Ask.fm disclose my information to other parties?

We may share general information that reflects the personal information you have provided to us or anything you have posted publicly (but which doesn’t identify you directly) with third parties for them to use for research and to deliver advertising about other products and services.

In particular, in relation to advertising, we may share your information with third-party advertising companies which we use to serve ads when you visit the Ask.fm site. These companies may use information about your visits to Ask.fm and other websites in order to advertise things which you might be interested in. For more information about this, please see our Terms of Use and Cookies Policy.

At Ask.fm we may cooperate with law enforcement enquiries to enforce any intellectual property or other rights. We may also share your personal information with government agencies, courts and/or other organisations who require it if we believe that it's necessary to protect our legal rights, or those of third parties and/or to comply with the law.

If there is any change of ownership in Ask.fm or any of our business, we may share your personal information with a prospective buyer and their advisors.

Data storage

Where is my personal information kept?

Ask.fm is a global website with servers in various countries. By giving us any personal information, or by using the applications available on the Ask.fm site, you agree to the transfer, storage and processing of your personal information.

Security

How is my personal information kept safe?

We have put in place appropriate security measures to protect and prevent the loss, misuse, and alteration of information, including your personal information. We also use reasonable security measures to safeguard the confidentiality of your personal information, such as secured servers using firewalls. Our technical experts at Ask.fm work hard to try and keep Ask.fm as safe and secure as we can.

We also impose appropriate requirements on our vendors/partners in order to protect the security and privacy of our users' confidential information.

While we take reasonable precautions against possible security breaches of our website, our databases and records, you should know that no website or Internet transmission is completely secure and we cannot guarantee that unauthorised access, hacking, data loss, or other breaches will never occur. So, we strongly urge you to take steps to keep your personal information safe (including your password) and to log out of your account after use – this will help keep your information secure. Remember, you decide what information you provide when chatting with people on Ask.fm – follow our Dos and Don'ts to help stay safe.

How do I help keep my information secure?

You should not tell anyone your password. If you lose your password or give it out to someone, your personal information will be at risk. If that happens, you should report it immediately to us. You must change your password immediately via your “Settings” page. Ask.fm is not responsible for your failure to keep your password secure and failure to do so may breach our Terms of Use.

Accessing your information and your member Profile

How do I change my Profile?

You can see and change your profile information at any time. Once you register, you will be able to change most of your personal information, including:

  • your name;
  • your country;
  • your contact email address;
  • your profile picture; and
  • your password.

Please update your information if it changes as soon as you can by signing in to your account and following the screen prompts. We strongly recommend that you change your password every so often, to help keep things secure, as this will make it harder for people to hack into your account without your permission.

Users in certain countries are able to ask for a copy of the information we hold about them (for which, where allowed by law, we may charge a small fee). This needs to be done in writing and using our contact form: Feedback. We will let you know what else we need from you before we send you a copy of your personal information.

Can I deactivate my Profile?

You can deactivate your profile by signing in with your password and opting to deactivate your profile. This option is available from your “Settings” page.

If you want to stop using your account, you can deactivate it. This means that no-one will be able to find you on Ask.fm. We save your profile information in case you later decide to restore your account. Many members deactivate their accounts for temporary reasons and in doing so expect us to maintain their information until they return to Ask.fm. You should ordinarily be able to restore your account and the whole of your profile within 12 months of deactivating it but we cannot guarantee that this will always be the case.

To prevent any misbehaviour on the Ask.fm site by a user once we have removed their profile/account for any reason, we shall retain such information as we consider necessary to ensure that the user does not open a new account and profile in breach of our Terms of Use, but we will not otherwise use that information.

Warning: Even after you remove information from your profile or deactivate your account, copies of that information (including any questions you have asked or answered that appear on other members' profiles) may still be visible and/or accessed on the Internet to the extent such information has been previously shared with others, or copied or stored by other users or to the extent such information has been shared with search engines. We cannot control this, nor do we accept any responsibility or liability for this. If you have given third party applications or websites access to your personal information they may keep that information to the extent they are allowed to under their own policies (or even if they are not allowed to do so).

Occasionally we get asked by parents, carers or guardians if we can deactivate their child's account. If you are a parent, carer or guardian and have any concerns about your child's activity on Ask.fm, we recommend that you speak directly to your child in the first instance. You may also find some useful information here: FAQs for Parents

If you have questions about our Privacy Policy or how we collect and use information, drop us a line via the Feedback page.

Please note: By continuing to use or access the Ask.fm site, you are accepting and agreeing to the terms of this Privacy Policy.

For users in the USA:

Special Notice Regarding Minors

You are not allowed to register with Ask.fm or use the site unless you are at least 13 years old. We require users to specify their age before any personal information is collected. By registering as a member, you agree to provide true and accurate information to Ask.fm. Please do not lie about your age. We do not knowingly collect (or allow any third party to collect) personal information from persons under the age of 13. If it comes to our attention that personal information has been collected from a person under the age of 13, we will delete this information and, if applicable, terminate the person’s account as quickly as possible. If you believe that we may have personal information from or about a child under the age of 13, please contact us.

Useful links

You might also want to take a look at the following pages:

Terms of Use: find out more about the relationship between you and Ask.fm
Dos and Don’ts: to ensure that everyone can enjoy Ask.fm safely and responsibly
Safety and Security Essentials: Ask.fm’s guide to online safety
Abuse Policy – how to deal with bad behaviour on Ask.fm

This policy was last updated on 17/02/2014