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Disney, Home Depot Get Poor Privacy Marks

Ralph Lauren is among the best, public interest group says

If you're looking for some help in writing or rewriting your company's privacy policy, take a close look at the latest report from CyberStreetSmart.org, a service of the New York Public Interest Research Group.

The report offers a concise, yet comprehensive list of dos and don'ts for writing privacy policy, giving specific examples from the retail industry in the form of "Screen Door Awards" for poor policy and "Steel Door Awards" for well-chosen policy language.

Disneyshopping.com received a Screen Door for its privacy policy, because its language is "very technical and lengthy" and may be hard for people to understand, according to the report.

Homedepot.com was awarded a Screen Door because its policy says personal information may be transferred if the company is sold.

Ralph Lauren was among the sites that received Steel Door awards. It received high marks for not sharing information in its database, according to CyberStreetSmart.

The goal of the report, which studied some 484 retail sites, is to help consumers identify red flags in privacy policies that may put their personally identifiable information at risk. But the report also should help privacy policy authors by offering some common-sense examples of what to include -- and what not to.

— Tim Wilson, Site Editor, Dark Reading

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