by Courtney Gordner
Understanding what information your website needs to legally provide for visitors is important for website administrators and business owners. Failing to offer the necessary information to customers and site visitors can put your organization in a legal bind. This makes ensuring data privacy, company transparency and service-provider information critical aspects of your site’s copy and information. Below is a list of key points that should be included when you are writing your company’s legal information.
Basic Company and Website Information
Basic information about your company is one of the more standard pieces of content that your website should feature. This includes the business’s name or the sole trader’s name, the company registration number and the organization’s address. Other contact information such as the business’s phone number, customer-service number or email address are also important elements. This information can be presented on a contact page, an about-us section or a legal information page, as cited by target online marketing.
One of the most relevant issues in terms of legality on the Web is the protection of personal information. Websites must offer visitors protection from identity theft and the spread of valuable personal information. This is particularly important for ecommerce sites that store credit-card information, bank-account numbers and home addresses.
Details should be given that inform users about the information they are storing on your site and the ways in which they can modify it. For example, if a client of a workers’ comp attorney paid their fees online, they should be given the option to control whether or not their credit card or bank information is saved on the company site. A data-privacy page that outlines protections of this nature and promises confidentiality should be included on your site.
Acceptable examples include market research and service or product improvement. Regardless of the goals of this data collection, it is illegal to do so without providing site visitors with an explanation. Users should also be informed as to whether or not this collected information will be shared with a third party and the reason that it would be shared.
Copyright and Trademarks
While the aforementioned information is important to include for protecting your company from legal trouble, copyright and trademark information is necessary to protect your own content. This information should outline the terms for the manner in which people can utilize the content on your website. This includes a statement regarding the proper use of the domain name, your company logo and the business’s name.
In terms of content, you need to explain the way in which it can be used. This includes videos, images, music and text content.
Writing the legal information on your website is an important step for ensuring the protection of your organization and the individuals who visit your site. The aforementioned information should be included on your website and expanded upon in order to outline your business’s policies and to meet legal obligations.
Brian Turner | Courtesy of the Author