eBay's TRUSTe Privacy Policy - dummies

By Marsha Collier

eBay had a privacy policy for all its users before privacy policies were even in vogue. Now eBay maintains the safety standards set forth by the pioneer in online safeguarding: TRUSTe.

TRUSTe sets a list of standards that its member Web sites have to follow to earn a “seal of approval.” The thousands of Web sites that subscribe to this watchdog group must adhere to its guidelines and set policies to protect privacy. eBay has been a member of TRUSTe since the privacy watchdog group was founded.

To review the policy that’s earned eBay the TRUSTe seal of approval, click the Policies link that appears at the bottom of every eBay page.

In addition to setting and displaying a privacy policy, eBay follows these guidelines as well:

  • eBay must make its Privacy Policy links easily accessible to users. You can find the logo on eBay’s home page. Click the Policies link. On the eBay Policies page, click the Privacy Policy link and you’re taken to the Privacy Policies page for more information. Take advantage of this opportunity to find out how your data is being protected.
  • eBay must disclose what personal information it collects and how it’s using the info.
  • Users must have an easy way to review the personal information that eBay has about them.
  • Users must have an option — opting out — that lets them decline to share information.
  • eBay must follow industry standards to make its Web site and database secure so that hackers and nonmembers have no access to the information. eBay uses Secure Sockets Layer (SSL), which is an encryption program that scrambles data until it gets to eBay. Unfortunately, no Web site, including the CIA’s Web site, is completely secure, so you still have to be on your guard while you’re online.