When you use Bing and MSN services with a web browser, we will place one or more "cookies" on your machine. For example, Bing uses a cookie with a unique identifier known as the Search ID to operate the service and enable certain search features. If you sign in to Bing or other Microsoft services using a Microsoft account, we will set or read one or more additional cookies. We use these cookies to operate Bing and MSN services and provide you with a more relevant search experience. You can use your browser settings to remove or block cookies on your computer.
We also use web beacons to help deliver cookies and compile analytics. These may include third-party web beacons, which are prohibited from collecting your personal information.
When you use Bing and MSN services with a web browser, we will place one or more “cookies” on your machine. For example, Bing uses a cookie with a unique identifier known as the Search ID to operate the service and enable certain search features. If you sign in to Bing or other Microsoft services using a Microsoft account, we will set or read one or more additional cookies. We use these cookies to operate Bing and MSN services and provide you with a more relevant search experience. You can use your browser settings to remove or block cookies on your computer.
Please see below for more information about cookies and how to control them.
Most Microsoft websites use "cookies", which are small text files placed on your hard disk by a web server. Cookies contain text that can be read by a web server in the domain that issued the cookie to you. The text often consists of a string of numbers and letters that uniquely identifies your computer, but may contain other information as well. Here is an example of a unique ID number stored in a cookie that Microsoft might place on your device when you visit one of our websites: E3732CA7E319442F97EA48A170C99801
Some of the cookies we commonly use are listed in the following chart. This list is not exhaustive, but it is intended to illustrate the reasons we typically set cookies. If you visit one of our websites, the site may set some or all of the following cookies:
In addition to the cookies Microsoft may set when you visit our websites, third parties may also set certain cookies on your device when you visit Microsoft sites. In some cases, this is because we have hired the third party to provide certain services on our behalf, such as site analytics. In other cases, it is because our webpages contain content or ads from third parties, such as videos, news content or ads delivered by other ad networks. Because your browser connects to those third parties’ web servers to retrieve that content, those third parties are able to set or read their own cookies on your device and may collect information about your online activities across websites or online services.
How to Control Cookies
For example, in Internet Explorer 11, you may block cookies by taking the following steps:
Instructions for blocking cookies in other browsers are available at each browser’s privacy statement.
Please be aware that if you choose to block cookies, you may not be able to sign in or use other interactive features of Microsoft sites and services that depend on cookies, and some advertising preferences that are dependent on cookies may not be able to be respected.
For example, in Internet Explorer 11, you may delete cookies by taking the following steps:
Instructions for deleting cookies in other browsers are available at each browser’s privacy statement.
Please be aware that if you choose to delete cookies, any settings and preferences controlled by those cookies, including advertising preferences, will be deleted and may need to be recreated.
Browser Controls for "Do Not Track" and Tracking Protection. Some newer browsers have incorporated “Do Not Track” features. Most of these features, when turned on, send a signal or preference to the websites you visit indicating that you do not wish to be tracked. These sites may continue to engage in activities that you might view as tracking even though you have expressed this preference, depending on the sites' privacy practices. Because there is not yet a common understanding of how to interpret the DNT signal, Microsoft does not currently respond to the browser DNT signals on its own websites or online services, or on third-party websites or online services where Microsoft provides advertisements, or content, or is otherwise able to collect information. We continue to work with the online industry to define a common understanding of how to treat DNT signals. In the meantime, users may continue to opt out of targeted ads from Microsoft as set forth above.
Internet Explorer (versions 9 and up) have a feature called Tracking Protection that helps prevent the websites you go to from automatically sending details about your visit to third-party content providers. When you add a Tracking Protection List, Internet Explorer will block third-party content, including cookies, from any site that is listed as a site to be blocked. By limiting calls to these sites, Internet Explorer will limit the information these third-party sites can collect about you. For more information about Tracking Protection Lists and Do Not Track, please see the Internet Explorer privacy statement or Internet Explorer Help.
Individual advertising companies may also offer their own opt-out capabilities plus more advanced advertising choices. For instance, Microsoft’s advertising preference and opt-out controls are available at Your privacy and Microsoft personalised ads. Please note that opting out does not mean that you will stop getting ads or see fewer ads; however, if you do opt out, the ads that you receive will no longer be behaviourally targeted. In addition, opting out does not stop information from being collected.
Our Use of Web Beacons
Microsoft web pages may contain electronic images known as web beacons - sometimes called single-pixel gifs - that may be used to help deliver cookies on our sites, allow us to count users who have visited those pages and deliver co-branded services. We may include web beacons in our promotional email messages or newsletters to determine whether messages have been opened and acted upon.
We may also work with other companies that advertise on Microsoft sites to place web beacons on their sites or in their advertisements to allow us to develop statistics on how often clicking on an advertisement on a Microsoft site results in a purchase or other action on the advertiser's site.
Finally, Microsoft sites may contain web beacons from third parties to help us compile aggregated statistics regarding the effectiveness of our promotional campaigns or other website operations. These web beacons may allow those third parties to set or read a cookie on your computer. These companies may collect information about your online activities across websites or online services, however, we prohibit third parties from using web beacons on our sites to collect or access your personal information. You may be able to opt out from data collection or use by these third-party analytics companies by clicking the links for the following analytics providers:
Other Similar Technologies
In addition to standard cookies and web beacons, websites can use other technologies to store and read data files on your computer. This may be done to maintain your preferences or to improve speed and performance by storing certain files locally. But, like standard cookies, it can also be used to store a unique identifier for your computer, which can then be used to track behaviour. These technologies include Local Shared Objects (or "Flash cookies") and Silverlight Application Storage.
Local Shared Objects or "Flash cookies". Websites that use Adobe Flash technologies may use Local Shared Objects or “Flash cookies” to store data on your computer. Note that the ability to clear Flash cookies may or may not be controlled by your browser setting for standard cookies as that may vary by browser. To manage or block Flash cookies, go to http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/settings_manager.html
Silverlight Application Storage. Websites or applications that use Microsoft Silverlight technology also have the ability to store data using Silverlight Application Storage. To learn how to manage or block such storage, visit the Silverlight Privacy Statement
When you use Bing and MSN services, Microsoft may collect many kinds of information in order to operate effectively and provide you the best products, services and experiences we can. We collect information when you register, sign in and use our sites and services. We may also get information from other companies. We collect this information in a variety of ways, including from web forms, technologies like cookies, web logging and software on your computer or other device.
When you conduct a search, Microsoft collects the following:
We store search terms (and the cookie IDs associated with search terms) separately from any account information that directly identifies the user, such as name, email address and phone numbers. We have technological safeguards in place designed to prevent the unauthorised correlation of this data and we remove the entirety of the IP address after 6 months, and cookies and other cross session identifiers, after 18 months.
Bing provides search services to select partners and its users. Some examples include Yahoo! and Nokia. In order to provide these services, Bing services receive certain search related information from these partners that may include date, time, IP address, a unique identifier and other search related data.
Microsoft collects many kinds of information in order to operate effectively and provide you with the best products, services and experiences we can. Some of this information you provide directly to us. Some of it we get by observing how you interact with our products and services. Some of it is available from other sources that we may combine with the data we collect directly. Regardless of the source, we believe that it is important to treat that information with care and to help you maintain your privacy.
What we collect:
How we collect:
We use a number of methods and technologies to gather information about how you use our sites and services, such as:
Storage and Retention:
We store search terms (and the cookie IDs associated with search terms) separately from any account information that directly identifies the user, such as name, email address and phone numbers. Furthermore, we have built-in technological and procedural safeguards designed to prevent the unauthorised correlation of this data. We take additional steps to protect the privacy of stored search information by removing the entirety of the IP address after 6 months, and cookies and other cross session identifiers, after 18 months.
Microsoft uses the information we collect to operate, improve and personalise the products and services we offer. We also may use the information to communicate with you, for example, informing you about your account and security updates.
For Bing services, we use this information to provide you with relevant search results. We also use the information we collect to maintain and improve the quality, security and integrity of our services. For example we may use this information for research purposes and to improve the relevancy of Bing search results. This information is also necessary in order to detect and protect against security threats such as botnet attacks, click fraud, worms and other threats.
Finally, as described in the Display of Advertising section of this document, we may use search query data for the purpose of personalising the ads we display to you as you use our services or those of our advertising partners.
How we use your personal information.
Microsoft uses the information we collect to operate, improve and personalise the products and services we offer. Information collected through one Microsoft service may be combined with information collected via other Microsoft services to give you a more consistent and personalised experience in your interactions with us. We may also supplement this with information from other companies. For example, we may use services from other companies to help us derive a general geographical area based on your IP address in order to customise certain services specific to your geographical area.
For Bing services, we use this information to provide you with relevant search results. We also use the information we collect to maintain and improve the quality, security and integrity of our services. For example we may use this information for research purposes and to improve the relevancy of search results. This information is also necessary in order to detect and protect against security threats such as botnet attacks, click fraud, worms and other threats.
We also may use the information to communicate with you, for example, informing you when a subscription is ending, letting you know when security updates are available or letting you know when you need to take action to keep your account active.
Microsoft provides many of our sites and services free of charge because they are supported by advertising. In order to make these services widely available, the information we collect may be used to help improve the advertisements you see by making them more relevant to you. For example, we may use search query data for the purpose of personalising the ads we display to you as you use our services or those of our advertising partners. The search terms you enter in Bing are categorised and certain user segments are inferred based on those terms. For example, if you search on terms associated with sports, we may associate a “sports segment” with the unique identifier contained in your cookie, and you will then be more likely to see ads related to sports.
We will share your personal information with your consent. We may also share or disclose information with Microsoft affiliates and vendors; when required by law or to respond to legal process; to protect our customers; to protect lives; to maintain the security of our services; and to protect the rights or property of Microsoft.
We may share some anonymised search query data with selected third parties for research purposes.
When you click on a link from a Bing search results page, the destination website will receive the standard information your browser sends to every website you visit, including the URL of the site you came from. Because the URL of the Bing search results page contains the text of the search query you entered, the destination website will be able to determine the search term you entered.
If your browser is enabled to allow pages to pre-load in the background for faster performance, Bing may use this functionality and your browser may preload page(s) in the background for faster results. When your browser loads a page in the background, it will have the same effect as if you visited that page, including sending the Bing results page URL (which may contain your search query) and downloading any cookie files that page may set. You can delete cookies using your browser settings. Click here for more information on how to delete cookies and to control pre-loading pages in Internet Explorer 11.
We may share some anonymised search query data with selected third parties for research purposes. Before we do so, we remove all unique identifiers such as IP addresses and cookie IDs from the data. We also run the data through a process designed to remove identifiable information that users may have included in the search terms themselves (such as national insurance numbers or credit card numbers). Additionally, we require these third parties to keep the data secure and to not use the data for any other purposes.
When you click on a search result or advertisement from a Bing search results page, the destination website will receive the standard information your browser sends to every website you visit - such as your IP address, browser type and language, and the URL of the site you came from (in this case, the Bing search results page). Because the URL of the Bing search results page contains the text of the search query you entered (which could include names, addresses or other identifying information that you entered), the destination website will be able to determine the search term you entered.
If your browser is enabled to allow pages to pre-load in the background for faster performance, Bing may use this function and your browser may preload page(s) in the background for faster results. When your browser loads a page in the background, it will have the same effect as if you visited that page, including sending the Bing results page URL (which may contain your search query) and downloading any cookie files that page may set. You can delete cookies using your browser settings. Click here for more information on how to delete cookies and to control pre-loading pages in Internet Explorer 11.
We may share or disclose personal information with other Microsoft controlled subsidiaries and affiliates, and with vendors or agents working on our behalf. For example, companies we've hired to provide customer service support or assist in protecting and securing our systems and services may need access to personal information in order to provide those functions. In such cases, these companies must abide by our data privacy requirements and are not allowed to use the information for any other purpose. We may also disclose personal information as part of a corporate transaction such as a merger or sale of assets.
Finally, we may access, disclose and preserve your personal information, including your private content (such as the content of your emails, other private communications or files in private folders), when we have a good faith belief that doing so is necessary to:
Please note that some of our sites and services include links to sites or services of third parties that have privacy practices different from those of Microsoft. If you submit personal information to any of those sites or services, your information is governed by the privacy statements of those third parties.
When using a web browser, the Bing preferences page allows you to manage your search preferences such as search history, search language settings and saved interests or favourites that may be used in Microsoft services when signed in using your Microsoft account. These settings allow you to customise your search experience and provide features that are most relevant to you and your interests.
For Bing Search in your browser, using the search terms you enter and the results you click, search history provides an easy way to revisit the sites and searches you've used before. You may clear your search history from appearing on the site by following the steps provided here or by going to the Bing preferences page noted above. Clearing your history removes it from the Search History service and prevents that history from being displayed on the site, but does not delete information from our standard search logs, which are retained and anonymised as described in the Collecting Your Information Section.
Managing Search History
For Bing Search in your browser, using the search terms you enter and the results you click, search history provides an easy way to revisit the sites and searches you've used before. You may clear your search history from appearing on the site by following the steps provided here. Clearing your history removes it from the Search History service and prevents that history from being displayed on the site, but does not delete information from our standard search logs, which are retained and anonymised as described in the Collecting Your Information Section.
Managing Interests and Personalisation settings
When you are signed in to your Microsoft account, the Interests page allows you to view, manage and clear topics and favourites, such as news topics or sports teams you configure in your Bing and MSN apps, or interests you confirm when using other Microsoft Services such as Cortana. You may also clear these interests and other information used for personalisation in the Personalisation tab on the Settings page. Because these interests and personalisation settings are used across Microsoft Services that are powered by Bing (as described in the Microsoft Services Powered by Bing section), clearing these settings may impact your personalisation in other Bing-powered services such as Cortana and MSN apps. Clearing these settings may also not prevent new interests or personalisation settings from being created if you continue to use personalisation features across these Microsoft services and apps.
To control personalisation features in these services and apps, either sign out of your Microsoft account or disconnect your Microsoft account from the specific service or application in the Settings options. To stop Cortana personalisation on applicable Windows devices, you can disable Cortana by going to Settings->Applications->Cortana on your Windows device.
Contacting Microsoft to Access Other Information
You may also contact Microsoft using the web form. We will make reasonable efforts to respond to your web request to access or delete your personal information within 30 days.
Microsoft services and apps that are powered by Bing services, such as MSN and Bing apps, Cortana and Microsoft mapping services use Bing search to provide you with enhanced features and convenient ways to access information such as weather forecasts, traffic reports and internet search results (not all Microsoft applications or Bing features are available in every country). These Bing-powered services are available on a variety of platforms including apps preinstalled with Windows, apps created for the iOS, apps in the Microsoft Store and available as browser plug-ins and toolbars.
When you conduct a search in a Bing-powered service or app, that information will be sent to Microsoft to provide you with the search results you are requesting. We use and protect this information as described in the Collecting Your Information section of this statement.
Some Bing-powered services, such as Cortana and MSN apps, provide you with an enhanced experience when you connect these services to your Microsoft account. When you log in and connect these Bing-powered services to your Microsoft account, Microsoft may use your information to personalise these and other Microsoft services and apps. Personalisation provides you with a customised experience to provide features that are most relevant to you and your interests.
Microsoft services and apps that are powered by Bing services, such as MSN apps, Cortana and Microsoft mapping services, use Bing search to provide you with enhanced features and convenient ways to access information such as weather forecasts, traffic reports and internet search results (not all Microsoft applications or Bing features are available in every country). These Bing-powered services are available on a variety of platforms including apps preinstalled with Windows, apps created for the iOS, apps in the Microsoft Store and available as browser plug-ins and toolbars.
For the Autosuggest feature, the characters that you type into a Bing-powered service or app to conduct a search will be sent to Microsoft in order to provide you with real-time search suggestions.
MSN and Bing Apps
When you install MSN and Bing apps, such as the MSN Sports app and MSN Weather app, we collect information that tells us if the app was installed properly, the installation date, the app version and other information about your computer such as the operating system and browser. This information will be collected on a regular basis to help us determine the number of users of the application, and issues associated with different versions of the application and different operating systems and browsers.
In addition, when you use a MSN or Bing app we collect information about how you interact with each app such as what buttons you click, which is used by Microsoft in order to operate the Bing services and to help improve Bing and other Microsoft products and services.
In MSN and Bing apps, the Settings charm also has a Microsoft Advertising option that allows you to enable or disable the use of your information collected from MSN and Bing apps for the purpose of personalised advertising.
Cortana, a personal assistant available on Windows phone 8.1 versions, is powered by Bing. Cortana can track things that interest you to provide a personalised experience, such as personalised reminders, suggestions, search results and app recommendations. Your Bing search queries that are made using Cortana are treated like any other Bing search queries and combined with other information about you to improve your Bing search results and the relevance of personalised ads. These searches are subject to the Bing Services policies outlined in this statement. When you are signed in with your Microsoft account, your Cortana Interests may sync and be used by other Microsoft apps and services, such as MSN or Bing apps, to customise your profile interests, preferences and favourites in those apps as well. For more information on how Cortana collects and uses your information, please see the Cortana privacy statement.
Personalisation and Syncing
Some Bing-powered services, such as Cortana and MSN apps, provide you with an enhanced experience when you connect these services to your Microsoft account. When you log in and connect these Bing-powered services to your Microsoft account, Microsoft may use your information to personalise these and other Microsoft services and apps. Personalisation provides you with a customised experience to provide features that are most relevant to you and your interests. These features use information from the searches you make in these Bing-powered services or apps (as described in the “Collecting Your Information” and “Using your Information” sections above) and information associated with your Microsoft account.
All information used for personalisation and syncing is stored on Microsoft servers, and for security purposes, is transmitted using SSL. Some information used to customise your apps on a specific PC will not be synced on that PC and your devices until you add that PC to your Microsoft account as a trusted PC.
For MSN and Bing apps, such as the MSN Weather app and the MSN Sports app, if you are signed in to Windows or a Windows Phone with a Microsoft account (or a domain account connected to a Microsoft account), the personalisation and sync features will be enabled by default. If you ever wish to stop personalisation and syncing in a MSN or Bing app, sign out of your Microsoft account using the app settings.
For some Bing-powered services or apps, you may need to connect your Microsoft account to the service or app before personalisation will be enabled, or consent to personalisation before using that application. Please see the privacy statement for the specific service or app for more information.
You may have different personalisation and sync settings depending on the version of your Bing-powered service or app. For more information on how to manage personalisation settings, please see the "Accessing your Information" section.
Personalisation and syncing in older Bing Apps and Bing apps on non-Microsoft Devices
Other Bing apps on Microsoft and non-Microsoft devices, such as older iOS versions of the Bing app, do not offer personalisation/syncing because they do not have functionality to allow you to use your Microsoft account to sign in or sign out of the app.
Older versions of Bing apps for Windows do not offer personalisation and rely on the Sync Your Settings option in PC settings to determine whether to sync your customised app settings. If you do not want to sync your customised app settings, you can turn off this function in PC settings -> Sync your settings. You can also turn off syncing by not signing in to Windows with a Microsoft account (or a domain account connected to a Microsoft account).
For the Bing app on your iOS device, personalisation and syncing can be turned on or off by signing in or out of your Microsoft account.
Configuring Bing-powered services and apps to use other data sources:
Some Bing-powered services and apps provide you with the option to configure the service or app to use additional information from other Microsoft products and services, or from third parties. For example:
Bing Experience Improvement Program for Bing Toolbar and Bing Desktop
If you are using Bing Desktop or Bing Toolbar and choose to participate in the Bing Experience Improvement Program, we also collect additional information about how you use these specific Bing apps, including information about your searches within these apps. Additionally, when you opt in to the Bing Experience program on the Bing Toolbar, we collect information about the addresses of the websites you visit to help improve search ranking and relevance. The information collected through the Bing Experience Improvement Program helps us to improve the quality and performance of our products and services.
To help protect your privacy, we do not use any of the information collected through the Bing Experience Improvement Program to identify or contact you, or target advertising to you. Also, we take steps to store such information separately from any account information we may have that directly identifies you such as name, email address or phone numbers. Finally, we delete the information collected through the Bing Experience Improvement Program after eighteen months. You may stop participating in the Bing Experience Improvement Program by following the instructions here.
Bing search and Microsoft Services Powered by Bing also have features available that permit you to connect to Facebook to further personalise your experience with Bing search and to personalise your experience in Microsoft Services powered by Bing. An example of these additional personalisation features is Local Scout on Windows Phone. You can turn off these additional personalisation features by going to https://www.facebook.com/settings?tab=applications and removing the Bing app.
If you’ve allowed a Microsoft service or application that uses Bing services to access your location, the location of your device will be sent to Microsoft along with the search terms, time and date of your search and a unique identifier generated by the Microsoft service or application. Mapping features in Microsoft's services and apps also use Bing services, and when you submit information such as an address to be viewed on a map, that service or application passes it to Bing services for processing.
Also, if you connect a Bing Service or app to another service that has “Check-in” or “Reminder” features, such as Facebook or Foursquare, when you use these features Microsoft will store the location of your device along with your Microsoft account information.
You can stop sending location information either through the Windows privacy setting or through the specific app settings, depending on your Windows version or device. For example, in Windows 8.1 you have the option to update this either in the Windows privacy menu or by using the app’s setting charm. For older versions of Windows or devices running other operating systems, refer to the help information about how to turn off location for that operating system or device.
When using Microsoft mapping features, we keep track of all requests the application you are using makes to the Bing service. Location-related information in the request or derived from the request, may be used for calculating payments to our vendors that provide mapping data, so that we may operate the service. We will occasionally capture all information in the request for use in testing and maintenance of the service. This information includes the date and time of the request and location-related information you may have provided to the application such as latitude and longitude, address, place name or the start and end address of a route.
When a Microsoft site or service collects age information, it will block users under 13 or obtain consent from a parent or guardian before their child can use it.
When consent is granted, the child's account is treated much like any other account, including letting the account holder communicate with other users.
Parents can change or revoke consent as described in this privacy statement.
When a Microsoft site or service collects age information, it will either block users under 13 or will ask them to provide consent from a parent or guardian before they can use it. We will not knowingly ask children under 13 to provide more information than is necessary to provide the service.
When consent is granted, the child's account is treated much like any other account. The child may have access to communication services like email, instant messaging and online message boards and may be able to communicate freely with other users of all ages.
Parents can change or revoke the consent choices previously made, and review, edit or request the deletion of their children's personal information. For example, parents can visit their Microsoft account and click on "Permissions".
Most of the online advertisements on Microsoft sites and services are displayed by Microsoft Advertising. When we display online advertisements to you, we will place one or more cookies in order to recognise your computer when we display an ad to you. Over time, we may gather information from the sites where we serve ads and use the information to help provide more relevant ads.
Many of our websites and online services are supported by advertising.
Most of the online advertisements on Microsoft sites and services are displayed by Microsoft Advertising. When we display online advertisements to you, we will place one or more persistent cookies on your computer in order to recognise your computer each time we display an ad to you. Because we serve advertisements on our own websites as well as those of our advertising and publisher partners, we are able to compile information over time about the types of pages, content and ads that you, or others who are using your computer, visited or viewed. This information is used for many purposes, for example, it helps us try to ensure that you do not see the same advertisements over and over again. We also use this information to help select and display targeted advertisements that we believe may be of interest to you.
You may opt out of receiving targeted ads from Microsoft Advertising by visiting our Your privacy and Microsoft personalised ads. For more information about how Microsoft Advertising collects and uses information, please see the Microsoft Advertising Privacy Statement.
We also allow third-party ad companies, including other ad networks, to display advertisements on our sites. In some cases, these third parties may also place cookies on your computer and may collect information about your online activities across websites or online services. These companies currently include, but are not limited to: 24/7 Real Media, AdBlade, AdConion, AdFusion, Advertising.com, AppNexus, Bane Media, Brand.net, CasaleMedia, Collective Media, InMobi,Interclick, Jumptap, Millennial Media, Mobclix, Mojiva, ROI Media, SpecificMedia, Tribal Fusion, ValueClick, Yahoo!, YuMe and Zumobi. These companies may offer you a way to opt out of ad targeting based on their cookies. You can find more information by clicking on the company names above and following the links to the websites of each company. Many of them are also members of the Network Advertising Initiativeor the Digital Advertising Alliance, which all provide a simple way to opt out of ad targeting from participating companies.
You should also be aware that some browsers have incorporated “Do Not Track” (DNT) features that, when turned on, send a signal in the browser header to websites and online services indicating that you do not wish to be tracked. It is up to the website or online service you visit (and any third parties providing advertising, content or other functionality on the website or online service) to decide how it will interpret and treat the signal. However, there is not yet a common understanding of how to interpret the DNT signal. As a result, Microsoft does not currently respond to the browser DNT signals on its own websites or online services, or on third-party websites or online services where Microsoft provides advertisements or content, or is otherwise able to collect information. We continue to work with the online industry to define a common understanding of how to treat DNT signals. In the meantime, users may continue to opt out of targeted ads from Microsoft as set forth above.
You can stop the delivery of future promotional emails from Microsoft sites and services by following the specific instructions in the emails you receive.You also have the option of proactively making choices about the receipt of promotional email, telephone calls and postal mail from Microsoft by visiting and signing in to the Promotional Communications Manager.
If you receive promotional emails from us and would like to stop getting them in the future, you can do so by following the directions in that message.
You also have the option of proactively making choices about the receipt of promotional emails, telephone calls and postal mail from Microsoft by visiting and signing into the Promotional Communications Managerallows you to update contact information, manage Microsoft-wide contact preferences, opt out of subscriptions, and choose whether to share your contact information with Microsoft partners. If you do not have a Microsoft account, you can manage your Microsoft email communication preferences by using this web form. These choices do not apply to the display of online advertising: please refer to the section "Display of Advertising (Opt-out)" for information on this matter. Nor do they apply to the receipt of mandatory service communications that are considered part of certain Microsoft services, which you may receive periodically unless you cancel the service.
Payment Data is the information that you provide when you make online purchases. This may include your payment instrument number (e.g., credit card, PayPal), your name and billing address, and the security code associated with your payment instrument (e.g., the CSV or CVV). This section provides additional information regarding the collection and use of your payment information.
Payment Data is the information that you provide when you make online purchases. This may include your payment instrument number (e.g., credit card, PayPal), your name and billing address, and the security code associated with your payment instrument (e.g., the CSV or CVV). This section provides additional information regarding the collection and use of your payment information.
Payment Data is used to complete your transaction, as well as for the detection and prevention of fraud. In support of these uses, Microsoft may share your Payment Data with banks and other entities that process payment transactions or other financial services, and for fraud prevention and credit risk reduction.
When you provide Payment Data while logged in with your Microsoft or organizational account we will store that data to help you complete future transactions.
You may update or remove the payment instrument information associated with your Microsoft account by logging in at https://commerce.microsoft.com. You may remove the payment instrument information associated with your organizational account by contacting Customer Support. After you close your account or remove a payment instrument, however, Microsoft may retain your payment instrument data for as long as reasonably necessary to complete your existing transaction, to comply with Microsoft’s legal and reporting requirements, and for the detection and prevention of fraud.
Microsoft account is a service that lets you sign in to Microsoft products, web sites and services, as well as those of select Microsoft partners. When you create a Microsoft account, we ask you to provide certain information. When you sign in to a site or service using your Microsoft account, we collect certain information in order to verify your identity on behalf of the site or service, to protect you from malicious account usage and to protect the efficiency and security of the Microsoft account service. We also send some of this information to sites and services that you sign in to with your Microsoft account.
We use demographic information – gender, country, age and postal code but not your name or contact information – from your Microsoft account to provide personalized ads to you. You may opt out of receiving targeted ads from Microsoft Advertising by visiting our opt-out page.
To view additional details about Microsoft account, including how to create and use a Microsoft account, how to edit account information, and how we collect and use information relating to a Microsoft account, please click on Learn More.
Microsoft account (formerly known as Windows Live ID and Microsoft Passport) is a service that allows you to sign in to Microsoft products, web sites and services, as well as those of select Microsoft partners.
Creating a Microsoft account
You can create a Microsoft account here by providing an email address, a password and other security information, such as an alternate email address and a phone number. We will use your security information for security purposes only - for instance, to verify your identity or to reset your password if you cannot access your Microsoft account. Some services may require added security, and in those cases, you may be asked to provide additional information. The email address and password that you use to sign up for your Microsoft account are your "credentials" that you will use to authenticate with our network. We assign a unique ID number to your credentials to identify your credentials and associated information.
You can use an email address provided by Microsoft (such as those ending in outlook.com, live.com, hotmail.com or msn.com) or an email address provided by a third party (such as those ending in gmail.com or yahoo.com) when signing up for your Microsoft account. You must use an email address that you own on an email service that you have access to.
When you create a Microsoft account, we will also ask you to provide the following demographic information: gender, country, birthdate and postal code. We may use birthdate to verify that children obtain appropriate consent from a parent or guardian to use a Microsoft account, as required by local law. We use this demographic information for market research. This demographic information also is used by our online advertising systems to provide you with personalized advertisements about products and services you might find useful, but our advertising systems do not receive or use any information that can personally and directly identify you (such as your name, email address or phone number). If you prefer not to receive personalized ads, you may register your preference with your Microsoft account by visiting our opt-out page so that whenever you sign in to web sites or services with your Microsoft account, our advertising systems will not serve you personalized ads. For more information about how Microsoft uses information for advertising, please see the Microsoft Advertising Privacy Statement.
Upon creating a Microsoft account using an email address provided by a third party, we will send you an email asking you to verify that you are the owner of the email address associated with your Microsoft account. This is designed to verify the validity of the email address and help prevent email addresses from being used without the permission of their owners.
We will use the email address you used to create your Microsoft account to send you communications relating to your use of Microsoft products and services and to the security of your account. We may also send you promotional emails about Microsoft products and services as permitted by local law. For information about managing your receipt of promotional communications, please visit Communications.
Signing into software, sites or services with your Microsoft account
When you sign in to a site or service using your Microsoft account, we collect certain information in order to verify your identity on behalf of the site or service, to protect you from malicious account usage and to protect the efficiency and security of the Microsoft account service. For instance, when you sign in, the Microsoft account service receives your credentials and logs your sign-in name and other information, such as the unique number assigned to your credentials, your IP address, your operating system and web browser version and a time and date. If you use a Microsoft account to sign in to a device or software that is installed on a device, a random unique ID is assigned to the device; this random unique ID will be sent as part of your credentials to the Microsoft account service when you sign in to a site or service with your Microsoft account and will be used to help protect your account. The Microsoft account service sends the following limited verification information to the site or service that you have signed in to: the unique ID number assigned to your credentials that permits the site or service to determine whether you are the same person from one sign-in session to the next; the version number assigned to your account (a new number is assigned each time you change your sign-in information); whether your email address has been confirmed; and whether your account has been deactivated.
When you sign in to Windows with a Microsoft account, Windows will send standard computer information to Microsoft as well as your device’s manufacturer, model name and version. We may use this to personalize certain communications to you, such as emails intended to help you get started with your device. If you sign in to your Windows 8.1 device with your Microsoft account, Windows uses your Microsoft account information to sign you in to Microsoft applications, web sites and services. To learn more about signing in to Windows with a Microsoft account, please see the Windows 8.1 Privacy Statement.
Some third-party sites and services that permit you to sign in with your Microsoft account require your email address in order to provide you with their services. In those cases, when you sign in, Microsoft will provide your email address but not your password to the site or service. If you created your Microsoft account credentials with the site or service, it may have limited access to information associated with your credentials and profile as noted during account creation.
Please note that sites and services that permit you to sign in with your Microsoft account can use or share your email address or other personal information that you provide to them as described in their privacy statements. They can share the unique ID number the Microsoft account service provides them only in order to fulfill a service or transaction that you may have requested. All sites or services that use the Microsoft account are required to have a posted privacy statement, but we do not control or monitor the privacy practices of those sites, and their privacy practices will vary. You should carefully review the privacy statement for each site you sign in to in order to determine how each site or service will use the information it collects.
Connecting your Microsoft account to your social network accounts
You may connect your Microsoft account to your account on a social network such as Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn in order to access information from that social network in your Microsoft account. For example, connecting your Microsoft account to your social network account lets you see status updates or messages from people you have friended or are following on the social network in your Outlook.com inbox; include them in your Microsoft account address book; and view their birthdays in your Microsoft account calendar. If you choose to connect your Microsoft account to your account on a social network, we will cache certain information about your social network account on our servers so that we can display updated information from your social network account.
You can see a list of the social networks that offer accounts to which you can connect your Microsoft account, as well as the social network accounts that you’ve actually connected to your Microsoft account, by signing in and going to profile.live.com/services. You can disconnect a social network account from your Microsoft account at any time at profile.live.com/services. If you disconnect a social network account, we will no longer cache information from that account.
Microsoft is not responsible for content originating from non-Microsoft services or for information you share with or send to those services. If you use a third-party service, its use of your information is subject to its privacy practices. You should carefully review the privacy statement for each social network account you connect to your Microsoft account to determine how it will use the information it collects.
Accessing your personal information and closing your account
You can access the personal information in your Microsoft account by going to the Microsoft account summary page. You can change your username if your Microsoft account does not belong to a managed domain. And you can change your password, alternate email address and phone number. You may also close your Microsoft account by going to account and then "Close your account." If your Microsoft account is within a managed domain, there may be a special process for closing your Microsoft account. Please note that if you are an Outlook.com user or have a billing account with Microsoft, if you go to account, you may be redirected to your account page for those services.
If you use an email address provided by Microsoft (such as those ending in outlook.com, live.com, hotmail.com or msn.com) when signing up for your Microsoft account, that email address will be unique to you for as long as your Microsoft account is active. If you or Microsoft close your Microsoft account as provided in the Microsoft Services Agreement, that email address or username (but not the Microsoft account itself) may be recycled into our system and assigned to another user. More information about Microsoft account is available at the Microsoft account web site.
Learn more about
Below you will find additional privacy information you may find important. Much of this describes practices that are common across the industry, but we want to make sure you are aware of them. Please keep in mind that this information is not a complete description of our practices – this is all in addition to the other, more specific information contained in the privacy statements for every Microsoft product and service you use.
On this page:
Non-Microsoft Services that Use Bing Search
Protecting the Security of Personal Information
Microsoft is committed to protecting the security of your personal information. We use a variety of security technologies and procedures to help protect your personal information from unauthorised access, use or disclosure. For example, we store the personal information you provide on computer systems that have limited access and are in controlled facilities. When we transmit highly confidential information (such as a credit card number or password) over the internet, we protect it via the use of encryption, such as the Secure Socket Layer (SSL) protocol.
If a password is used to help protect your accounts and personal information, it is your responsibility to keep your password confidential. Do not share it. If you are sharing a computer, you should always log out before leaving a site or service to protect access to your information from subsequent users.
Where Information is Stored and Processed
Personal information collected on Microsoft sites and services may be stored and processed in the United States or any other country where Microsoft or its affiliates, subsidiaries or service providers maintain facilities. Microsoft abides by the US-EU Safe Harbour Framework and the US-Swiss Safe Harbour Framework as set forth by the US Department of Commerce regarding the collection, use, and retention of data from the European Economic Area, and Switzerland. To learn more about the Safe Harbour program, and to view our certification, please visit www.export.gov/safeharbor/.
Microsoft may retain your personal information for a variety of reasons, such as to comply with our legal obligations, resolve disputes, enforce our agreements, and for as long as necessary to provide services. To learn how to access your personal information, visit Accessing Your Information.
Changes to Our Privacy Statements
We will occasionally update our privacy statements to reflect customer feedback and changes in our services. When we post changes to a statement, we will revise the "last updated" date at the top of the statement. If there are material changes to the statement or in how Microsoft will use your personal information, we will notify you either by prominently posting a notice of such changes before they take effect or by directly sending you a notification. We encourage you to periodically review the privacy statements for the products and services you use to learn how Microsoft is protecting your information.
To find the Microsoft subsidiary in your country or region, see http://www.microsoft.com/worldwide/.
Microsoft Privacy, Microsoft Corporation, One Microsoft Way, Redmond, Washington 98052 USA • 425-882-8080.
Privacy at Microsoft
Controlling your online privacy
Security at Home
FTC Privacy Initiatives