Policies and Procedures

We’re committed to keeping your data secure, your private information private, and being transparent about our practices as a business.

Data Processing Amendment (DPA)

Help Scout’s Data Processing Amendment v. 1.2 (as of Nov, 2018).

Introduction to this Amendment

Processing personal data in a secure, fair, and transparent way is extremely important to us at Help Scout. As part of this effort, we process personal data in accordance with the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”), the EU/US Privacy Shield principles (“Privacy Shield”), the laws of the US governing the handling of various types of personal data (including HIPAA), and industry standards, such as PCI.[1]

To better protect individuals’ personal data, we are providing these terms to govern Help Scout’s and your handling of personal data (the “Data Processing Amendment” or “DPA”). This DPA amends and supplements your Terms of Service (“ToS”) and requires no further action on your part.

If you do not agree to this DPA, you may discontinue the use of the Help Scout service and cancel your account.

Definitions

It is important that all parties understand what data and whose data is protected under this DPA. Each party has respective obligations to protect personal data; therefore, the following definitions explain the scope of this DPA and the mutual commitments to protect personal data.

“Help Scout”, “we”, “us”, or “our” refers to the provider of the Help Scout website and services, (collectively referred to as the “Help Scout Service.”).

“You” or “Customer” refers to the company or organization that signs up to use the Help Scout Service to manage the relationships with your consumers or service users.

“Party” refers to Help Scout and/or the customer depending on the context.

“Personnel” refers to those individuals who are employed by or are under contract to perform a service on behalf of one of the parties. Personnel may have rights in their personal data (including business contact information) if they reside in the EU. It is important to be clear about how personnel’s rights are protected.

“Sub-processor” is a Third-party, independent contractors, vendors and suppliers who provide specific services and products related to the Help Scout website and our services, such as hosting, credit card processing and fraud screening, and mailing list hosting ("third-party" or "outside contractor" shall have similar meanings).

“Incident” means: (a) a complaint or a request with respect to the exercise of an individual’s rights under the GDPR; (b) an investigation into or seizure of the personal data by government officials, or a specific indication that such an investigation or seizure is imminent; or (c) any breach of the security and/or confidentiality as set out in this DPA leading to the accidental or unlawful destruction, loss, alteration, unauthorized disclosure of, or access to, the personal data, or any indication of such breach having taken place or being about to take place.

The terms, “Data Subject”“Personal Data”, “Member State”“Controller”“Processor”, and “Processing” shall have the same meaning as in the GDPR, and their cognate terms shall be construed accordingly.

For the sake of readability, we do not use initial capitalization of defined terms in this DPA. Defined terms are defined terms, irrespective of their format.

1. Undertakings regarding personal data

  1. Each party agrees that personal data shall be treated as confidential information under this DPA. In addition, each party shall at all times comply with applicable laws relating to data protection in the relevant jurisdiction with respect to each other’s personal data.
  2. Personal Data shall remain the property of the disclosing party. Help Scout acknowledges that customer is the controller and maintains control over data subject’s personal data.
  3. Help Scout will process customer’s personal data only to the extent strictly necessary for the purpose of providing the services in accordance with the ToS and any further written instructions from the customer that are mutually agreed upon in writing. Help Scout agrees that:
    1. it will implement and maintain a reasonable and appropriate security program comprising adequate security, technical and organizational measures to protect against unauthorized, unlawful or accidental processing, use, erasure, loss or destruction of, or damage to, customer personal data;
    2. it will not modify, alter, delete, publish or disclose any customer personal data to any third party, nor allow any third party to process such personal data on Help Scout’s behalf unless the third party is bound to similar confidentiality and data handling provisions;
    3. it shall ensure that access to personal data is limited to those personnel who require such access to perform its obligations under the ToS, and its personnel engaged in the processing of personal data are informed of the confidential nature of the personal data, have received appropriate training on their responsibilities and have executed written confidentiality agreements. Help Scout shall ensure that such confidentiality obligations survive the termination of the personnel engagement; and
    4. it will only process customer personal data to the extent necessary to perform its obligations under the ToS, upon written instructions of the customer (only as mutually agreed upon), and in accordance with applicable laws.
  4. Upon termination of your account Help Scout will delete, destroy, or anonymize the personal data in accordance with our standard backup and retention policy per the ToS, normally, no later than 60 days, unless we are required to retain personal data due to Union, Member State or United States laws; in which case Help Scout reserves the right to retain personal data.
  5. Help Scout is certified under the EU/US Privacy Shield Framework and agrees to remain in compliance, therefore, customer may transfer personal data from the EU to Help Scout, as this transfer mechanism is deemed to be adequate for the purposes of GDPR. Help Scout shall not transfer any customer personal data outside of the US or to other locations not deemed to be “adequate” under EU law without providing reasonable notice under the ToS to the customer.
  6. The parties acknowledge that customer may from time to time be in possession of personal data relating to Help Scout’s personnel. Help Scout warrants that it has provided all necessary notifications and obtained all necessary consents, authorizations, approvals and/or agreements as required under any applicable law in order to enable: (i) the disclosure of Help Scout’s personal data to customer; and (ii) further processing of such Help Scout personal data by customer.

2. Undertakings regarding sub-processors

  1. The parties acknowledge that Help Scout may engage third-party sub-processors in connection with the obligations of the ToS. For any sub-processor with which Help Scout engages, we will enter into a written agreement containing data protection obligations no less protective than those in this amendment and as required to protect customer’s personal data to the standard required by the GDPR
  2. Help Scout shall make available to customer the current list of sub-processors by posting that list online at: https://www.helpscout.com/company/legal/sub-processors/. Help Scout shall update the list with details of any addition or replacement of sub-processors at least 10 days prior to any change. If customer has a reasonable basis to object to Help Scout's change in sub-processors, customer shall notify Help Scout promptly within 10 business days after receipt of Help Scout's notice regarding sub-processor changes. Customer may object to a new sub-processor appointment or replacement, provided such objection is based on reasonable grounds related to data protection. Help Scout will use reasonable efforts to work in good faith with customer to find an acceptable, reasonable, alternate solution. If the parties are not able to agree to an alternate solution, customer may suspend or terminate their account.

3. Customer undertakings and Help Scout’s assistance

  1. Customer warrants that it has all necessary rights to provide to Help Scout the personal data for processing in connection with the provision of the Help Scout Services.
  2. To the extent required by applicable law, customer is responsible for ensuring that any data subject consents that may be necessary to this processing are obtained, and for ensuring that a record of such consents is maintained, including any consent to use personal data that is obtained from third parties. Should such consent be revoked by a data subject, customer is responsible for communicating the fact of such revocation to Help Scout, and Help Scout remains responsible for implementing any customer instruction with respect to the further processing of that personal data, or, as may be in accordance with any of Help Scout’s legal obligations.
  3. Customer understands, as a controller, that it is responsible (as between customer and Help Scout) for:
    1. determining the lawfulness of any processing, performing any required data protection impact assessments, and accounting to regulators and individuals, as may be needed;
    2. making reasonable efforts to verify parental consent when data is collected on a data subject under 16 years of age;
    3. providing relevant privacy notices to data subjects as may be required in your jurisdiction, including notice of their rights and provide the mechanisms for individuals to exercise those rights;
    4. responding to requests from individuals about their data and the processing of the same, including requests to have personal data altered, corrected, or erased, and providing copies of the actual data processed;
    5. implementing your own appropriate technical and organizational measures to ensure and demonstrate processing in accord with this DPA;
    6. notifying individuals and any relevant regulators or authorities of any incident as may be required by law in your jurisdiction.
  4. Help Scout shall assist the customer by implementing appropriate technical and organizational measures, insofar as this is reasonably and commercially possible, in fulfilling customer’s obligations to respond to individuals’ requests to exercise rights under the GDPR.
  5. Help Scout shall assist the customer by implementing appropriate technical and organizational measures, insofar as this is reasonably and commercially possible, to ensure compliance with articles 32 to 36 (inclusive) of the GDPR.
  6. On an annual basis, Help Scout will procure an independent audit of its code base and systems by independent third parties to demonstrate compliance with its obligations under this DPA. Upon customer request, and subject to confidentiality obligations, Help Scout shall make available to customer information reasonably necessary to demonstrate compliance with Help Scout’s obligations under this DPA. At a minimum, upon written request, Help Scout will produce to customer an executive summary of any third-party audit reports concerning the adequacy of Help Scout’s technical security measures as described in the Security Policy.
  7. Customer may contact Help Scout in writing to schedule an audit of the procedures relevant to the protection of personal data. Customer shall reimburse Help Scout for any time or resources expended for any such on-site audit at the Help Scout's then-current professional services rates, which shall be made available to customer upon request. Before the commencement of any such on-site audit, customer and Help Scout shall mutually agree upon the scope, timing, and duration of the audit. Customer shall promptly notify Help Scout with information regarding any non-compliance discovered during the course of an audit.

4. Incident Management

  1. When either party becomes aware of an incident that impacts the processing of personal data, it shall promptly notify the other about the incident and shall reasonably cooperate in order to enable the other party to perform a thorough investigation into the incident, to formulate a correct response, and to take suitable further steps in respect of the incident.
  2. Both parties shall at all times have in place written procedures which enable them to promptly respond to the other about an incident. Where the incident is reasonably likely to require a data breach notification under applicable laws, the party responsible for the incident shall notify the other without undue delay of having become aware of such an incident.
  3. Any notifications made under this section shall be made to privacy@helpscout.com (when made to Help Scout) and to our point of contact with you (when made to the customer), and shall contain: (i) a description of the nature of the incident, including, where possible, the categories and approximate number of individuals concerned and the categories and approximate number of records concerned; (ii) the name and contact details of the point of contact where more information can be obtained; (iii) a description of the likely consequences of the incident; and (iv) a description of the measures taken or proposed to be taken to address the incident including, where appropriate, measures to mitigate its possible adverse effects.

5. Liability and Indemnity

  1. Each party indemnifies the other and holds them harmless against all claims, actions, third party claims, losses, damages and expenses incurred by the indemnified party and arising directly or indirectly out of or in connection with a breach of this DPA.

6. Duration and Termination

  1. This DPA shall come into effect on May 25, 2018 and shall continue until it is changed or terminated in accordance with the ToS.
  2. Termination or expiration of this DPA shall not discharge the parties from the confidentiality obligations herein.