Privacy Policy

1. Introduction
Charleston Water System respects the privacy of every individual who visits the Charleston Water’s web site. Accordingly, this privacy statement has been developed to inform you about Charleston Water’s information collection, usage and disclosure practices. This policy applies only to the various pages of the official Charleston Water web site (www.charlestonwater.com). When you follow a link to another web site, even the site of another governmental agency, you are subject to the privacy policy of that site. You should check the privacy policies of each of these sites if you have questions about how they handle personally identifiable information.

2. Anonymous vs. Personally Identifiable Information
Anonymous Information refers to information that cannot be tied back to a specific individual. Personally Identifiable Information refers to information that tells Charleston Water who you are; such as your name, phone number, mailing address or e-mail address.

3. General Principles
Charleston Water will not collect, use or disclose to a third party your Personally Identifiable Information without your consent, except where (a) such information could contribute to a legal investigation, or (b) such information could aid in an emergency where people’s lives and safety may be at stake.

There may be circumstances where Charleston Water infers that you have given the necessary consent, but in those circumstances Charleston Water will only collect, use and disclose your Personally Identifiable Information for the purposes for which such information was provided. For example, where you give Charleston Water your Personally Identifiable Information so an account may be opened in your name, Charleston Water will infer that you have consented to the collection, use and disclosure of your Personally Identifiable Information for the purpose of opening your account, but not for any other purposes or uses.

Part of your use of this web site will include the opportunity to electronically submit Personally Identifiable Information to Charleston Water. Although these opportunities are provided for you as part of Charleston Water’s efforts to serve you better, you are never obliged to give away your Personally Identifiable Information.

If you do decide to provide Personally Identifiable Information, it will be encrypted using 128 bit technology so that it will arrive unread and unaltered at Charleston Water’s server. Upon receipt of your Personally Identifiable Information, Charleston Water will take steps to ensure that it is appropriately safeguarded with password protection. However, no web site can protect itself against all eventualities.

Charleston Water will not be held liable and hereby disclaims any liability for any injury caused by the disclosure of your information, whether by security breach, accident, inadvertence, or any other act resulting in disclosure.

4. Automatic Data Collection
When you access the Charleston Water web site, the site software automatically collects the internet protocol (IP) address of the computer through which you are connected to the Internet. This web site also automatically collects information about your Internet browser, operating system, the date and time of your visit, and the path which you followed immediately before accessing this site. All the information that is automatically submitted to Charleston Water is considered Anonymous Information.

5. Children
No applications on this web site specifically solicit information from minors or seek to determine whether the visitor is a minor. Consequently, visitors should be aware that the collection of personal information requested from or volunteered by children online or by e-mail will be treated in the same manner as information given by an adult. Among other things, this means that it may become a public record and therefore may be subject to public access. We ask that parents guide their children when children are asked to provide personal information online. We ask that children get their parents’ permission before providing any information to us.

6. Cookies
When you access the Charleston Water website, a cookie is automatically installed on your hard drive.  A cookie is a small text file that contains a unique identification number, which can be used to identify your browser, but not you.

Cookies form an essential part of the Internet today by allowing servers to recognize users’ browsers when the users return to previously visited websites. Since cookies are only text files, they cannot "run" on your computer and have no ability to search your computer for information or to transmit information to anyone.

Although cookies may help enrich your Internet experience, you are free to prevent the installation of cookies on your hard drive, including the Charleston Water cookie, by simply disabling the feature in your browser’s options.

7. E-Mail Communications
Charleston Water adheres to a no "spam" policy. Therefore, you will not receive regular, unsolicited e-mail communications from Charleston Water unless you have explicitly agreed otherwise. In addition, you may easily change your decision to regularly receive e-mail communications from Charleston Water.

To be removed from Charleston Water’s e-mailing list, simply follow the "unsubscribe" option found at the bottom of any regular Charleston Water’s e-mail communication. Please note that in circumstances where you have voluntarily provided Charleston Water with your e-mail address, Charleston Water reserves the right to send you a one-time e-mail communication, regardless of your e-mail contact status. In addition, Charleston Water reserves the right to contact you if compelled to do so as part of a legal proceeding or if there has been a violation of Charleston Water’s Terms of Use.

8. Your Rights
You have the right to know precisely what Personally Identifiable Information Charleston Water has collected about you, as well as the use and disclosure of such information. In addition, you have the right to ensure that your Personally Identifiable Information is accurate, and where any errors may exist, to have such information corrected immediately. To make a request to review your Personally Identifiable Information, please contact Charleston Water thru the Contact Use feature of this site.

9. Effective Date
The effective date of this privacy policy is 27 December 2006. Charleston Water reserves the right to update this policy from time to time, and it is your responsibility to check for any such updates.

10. Public Records
Charleston Water is governed by the South Carolina public records laws. This means that the information we receive online might be disclosed to any person making a public records request. Certain types of information (such as electronic payment information) are exempt from disclosure as public records. If you have questions about the South Carolina public records laws, refer to S.C. Code Ann. §30-1-10 et. seq. For purposes of determining whether information is a public record, information sent to us through this web site is treated the same as information sent to us by mail or delivered to us in person.

S.C. FAMILY PRIVACY PROTECTION ACT NOTICE
Pursuant to §30-2-50 (B) of the South Carolina Code of Laws, notice is hereby provided that §30-2-50 (A) of the South Carolina Code of Laws prohibits a person or private entity from obtaining or using any personal information obtained from the public records of a public body, such as the Charleston Water, for purposes of commercial solicitation directed to any person in the state of South Carolina.

Notice is further given that §30-2-50 (D) of the South Carolina Code of Laws specifically provides that any person knowingly obtaining or using public records from a public body, such as the Charleston Water, for purposes of commercial solicitation shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined an amount not to exceed $500 or imprisoned for a term not to exceed one year, or both.