Privacy policy

Protecting your privacy and the confidentiality of your personal information is an important part of our business at SurexDirect.com Ltd. ("we" or "us"), whether over the Internet, by telephone, or at our offices.

Our Privacy Policy tells you how we protect your privacy and maintain the confidentiality of your information.

Your Information

The information we collect will be used in the normal course of business to assess your insurance needs, communicate with you, apply the underwriting and rating criteria, issue insurance documents and settle your claims. It will be kept in your file.

Either before or at the time we collect information about you, we will explain how we intend to use it. We will limit the information we collect to what we need for those purposes, and use it only for those purposes. We will obtain your consent first if we wish to use your information for any purpose other than assisting you with your insurance needs, and before collecting information from third parties.

We obtain most of your personal information directly from you. The information we ask for depends on which product or service you request. For every product or service, we need your name, and address and may need other information, such as:

Birth date

This helps us identify you and ensure that no one is trying to impersonate you. We may also use it to determine your eligibility for products, services or discounts that may apply to a particular age group.

Claims history

This information is important in helping us to assess your insurance profile and recommend the right coverage at the right price. We may obtain the information from a variety of sources, including other insurers, claims tracking databases, brokers, claims experts, investigative bodies, etc. We usually verify the information you provide when you buy your insurance, or at the time of the claim. If we need to obtain sensitive financial or medical information, we will ask for your specific consent.

Information about your property

Whether you insure a car or a house, we need information to make sure we recommend the right insurance product. For example, we might disclose your information in order to obtain an appraisal of the value of your house in order to provide you with the insurance coverage you need.

Financial information

Financial information, such as a bank account number or a credit card number, is mainly collected for payment purposes. When a payment is made by cheque or money order, we may contact a client’s bank to verify it.

We may also verify information from a client’s credit report (credit score). This information is only one element among others, including your claims history and driving record, for example, that we review in the underwriting or claims process.

We never use credit information to refuse to issue, or cancel a policy, or to determine your financial ability to pay the premium. Because an individual’s credit score is a strong claims predictor, the process of verifying this information allows us to access reliable information electronically and prepare a quote in minutes, whether you are doing business with us online or by telephone. While a request for credit history will appear in your file, there are no negative consequences to the request and it is not considered a credit check and does not in any way affect your credit score.

When we obtain your credit report, we usually do it via Equifax Canada Inc. and/or TransUnion Canada.

Health information

This is required only in specific cases to determine whether you have special medical conditions that may affect your coverage or claim.

In these cases, we only collect the information we need for the poses explained to you. If ever we wish to use it for other purposes in future, we will ask you for your consent at that time and explain why.

Other Information

With your consent, we may obtain information about you from third parties, such as previous insurers, government organizations that manage public information data banks, or insurance information bureaus.

Obtaining additional information from these third parties helps us to verify the information provided, evaluate your needs and assess your eligibility for our products and services or for our group rates.

For example, for automobile insurance, we need to know your driving history. For this reason, we may obtain a Motor Vehicle Report. We will not do this without your consent; however, it is important to note that if you do not give your consent, we may not be able to insure you.

Call Monitoring

To ensure that all of our clients receive the best possible service, we may use a call monitoring system in our service centres. This enables us to monitor and record telephone calls, and use the information for training and quality assurance purposes. Clients who prefer not to have their calls recorded are welcome to request an insurance quote by writing to us.

Our Web Site

When you visit our web site and move from page to page, read pages or download content, we collect information as to which pages you visited, the content you downloaded, and the addresses of the web sites you visited immediately before coming to our web site. This information is collected only for statistical purposes to serve you better.

We use this information to find out how many people visit our web site and which sections of the site are most often visited. This helps us to understand what type of information is most useful to you so that we can improve our web site and make it easier for you to find the information you are looking for. Although we record statistical information on the number of visitors to our web site, no information about you individually will be kept or used.

Cookies

We use session cookies as a security feature for our online services. For example, when you log in to our site, you are authenticated through your User ID and Password, and a cookie will store the identification number of your browser. Throughout your session, the session cookie acts as a digital signature to identify your current session to the server. The server also monitors the number of your browser to ensure that your session is secure. Session cookies store information only for the length of time that you are connected to a web site; they are not written onto your hard drive. Once you leave the web site, the originator of the session cookie no longer has the information that was contained on it.

We also use session cookies to track your visits within our site. We use that information to determine the type of information that you are looking for and to improve our site. We use information about the site you visited immediately prior to ours to assess the viability of links to our site that we have created on third party sites.

We do not use "persistent cookies", i.e. cookies that are written onto your hard drive and remain there until the expiry date of the cookie.

For our online services to operate, your browser must be set to accept cookies. If you are concerned about having your browser enabled to accept cookies while you are surfing on other web sites, we recommend that you enable your browser to notify you when receiving a cookie. This gives you the ability to accept or reject any cookie presented by the web site you are visiting.

Email and Messaging

When you send us a message using electronic media, such as an email, SMS or MMS, or when you ask us to respond to you using such electronic media, we learn your exact email address or phone number and any information you have included in the message or email.

We use your email address or phone number, as applicable, to acknowledge your comments and/or reply to your questions, and we will store your communication and our reply for future correspondence. We may use your email address or phone number to send you information about our products or services that we believe may be of interest to you. If you don't want us to contact you with product information by email or messaging, simply let us know at any time.

Even if you have subscribed to an email list to provide you with certain information on a regular basis, or we send you information about our products and services via email, you may ask us to remove you from the list at any time using the unsubscribe instructions provided with each email.

When you send us an email or other electronic message, it is important to note that the transmission may not occur in a secure environment. If, in the course of an application, we request that you transmit confidential information over the Internet, we ensure that such transmission is encrypted. We recommend that you use caution when forwarding email messages to us and that you do not include confidential information (such as policy numbers, personal information, etc.) in those messages as they may not be encrypted.

Releasing Information

Your personal information may only be released to other persons under the following circumstances:

  • If we have your consent;
  • To select representatives (suppliers and agents) who assist us in serving you and who are obliged to maintain the confidentiality of your information;
  • When we are required or permitted to do so by law.

Under no circumstances do we sell client lists or personal information to others. When information about you is released, it is always with your consent, unless we are required or permitted to do so by law.

To serve you better

We provide a limited amount of information, only as necessary, to our personnel and select representatives (suppliers and agents), for activities such as marketing campaigns or satisfaction surveys.

For example, we may share your information with suppliers like body shops, car rental agencies, cleaning firms, appraisers, mailing houses or information technology firms, but only for the purposes of assisting you with your insurance needs.

Storage

We may store your personal information on servers located in the United States. Therefore U.S. law may apply to the information. Your health information will not be stored outside of Canada.

When required or permitted by law

In cases where your personal information is required or permitted by law, we must provide the information in response to a valid demand, search warrant or other legally valid enquiry or order. We may exchange information with third parties such as police forces or independent claims experts in the event of an enquiry with respect to a loss. We may also disclose information to an investigative body in the case of a breach of agreement or contravention of law in order to help prevent fraud, money laundering or other criminal activity.

Transfers of a business

We may acquire new businesses or sell parts of our existing business. As part of these transactions, personal client information and information regarding the insurance product or service purchased would generally be among the transferred business assets.

Affiliated Companies

We may share your information with affiliates to help us serve you better and ensure we meet your expectations. It is important to note that you can withdraw your consent at any time.

Note: Any health information provided to us in connection with an insurance product is never shared.

Protecting Information

We will protect your personal information with appropriate safeguards and security measures. We will retain it only for the time it is required and for the purposes we explain.

How we protect your information

We will protect your information with appropriate safeguards and security measures. We maintain rigorous security standards to protect our systems and your personal information against unauthorized access and use. All of our personnel and select representatives (suppliers and agents) are bound to maintain your confidentiality and may not use the information for any unauthorized purpose. We limit access to our servers, and only employees who must see your information to provide products and service to you are entitled to access it. When we provide information in response to a legal enquiry or order, we ensure that the order is valid and we disclose only the information that is legally required.

Our personnel are familiar with the procedures that must be taken to safeguard client information. We understand that protecting the confidentiality of your information is more than a formality – it’s an integral part of our job. It is spelled out in our employment agreements and regularly confirmed in writing.

We audit our procedures and security measures regularly to ensure that they are being properly managed and that they remain effective and appropriate.

We retain your information only as long as it is required, and only for the reasons it was collected.

The length of time we keep information varies depending on the product or service and the nature of the information. This period may extend beyond the end of your relationship with us, but only for as long as is legally necessary in order to have sufficient information to respond to any issue that may arise at a later date. When your information is no longer needed for the purposes explained to you, we have procedures to destroy, delete, erase or convert it to an anonymous form.

We use SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) to transmit your information online. SSL encrypts your info by encoding it and also verifies to your browser that our website is authentic before transmitting information.

Providing Information Access and Accuracy

We will give you access to the information in your file. We will make every reasonable effort to keep your information accurate and up-to-date and encourage you to contact us with any changes.

Your right to access information

It is your right to access the information in your file. Any request to access your information should be sent to our Privacy Officer in writing at the following address:

Lance Miller
Box 100
Magrath, Alberta T0K1J0

We will respond to your request within 30 days. Please note that we may not be able to provide personal information found in your file which contains references to third parties, or information that is subject to legal privilege, contains confidential information proprietary to us, relates to an investigation of a breach of an agreement or a contravention of the law, or cannot be disclosed for other legal reasons.

Keeping your information up to date

We will make every reasonable effort to keep your information accurate and up to date.

If you have home or auto insurance with us, you can help by keeping us informed and letting us know of any change in your address, telephone number, or automobile. If you find any errors in the information we keep in your file, simply let us know. We will make the corrections immediately and make sure they are conveyed to anyone in possession of the information. Your file will contain a record of all correspondence.

User ID and Password

You will be provided a User ID and Password when you create an account with us. We will require you to use your User ID and Password to access your account and policy. We ask you for specific information when you call us so we can verify we are giving your information to you, and not someone else.

Do not share your User ID and Password. You are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of your User ID and Password. Select a Password that is difficult to guess and change your Password regularly.

Keep your computer updated with current software, security patches and virus protection. Install a firewall that will filter what information is coming in so you can block unwanted visitors from contacting you or accessing your information.

Respecting and Responding to Your Privacy Concerns

You have the option to refuse or withdraw consent to the collection, use and release of your personal information, and we will record and respect your choices. We will investigate and respond to your concerns about any aspect of our handling of your information. You have the right to withdraw your consent at any time.

We will be pleased to explain your options and record your choices, as well as explaining any consequences associated with a decision to refuse or withdraw your consent.

If you have any questions or concerns about a privacy or confidentiality issue, please do not hesitate to contact our Privacy Officer in writing at the following address:

Lance Miller
Box 100
Magrath, Alberta T0K1J0

If your problem or concern still remains unresolved, you may contact one of the following:

Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada
112 Kent Street
Place de Ville
Tower B
Floor 3
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 1H3
Toll-free: 1-800-282-1376
Phone: (819) 994-5444
http://www.privcom.gc.ca

You can also contact the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Alberta.

Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner (Edmonton)
Suite 410, 9925 109 Street NW
Edmonton, AB T5K 2J8
Phone: (780) 422-6860
Toll-Free: (888) 878-4044
Fax: (780) 422-5682
http://www.oipc.ab.ca