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Polygence Privacy Policy

Effective: August 24, 2020

This Privacy Policy ("Policy") describes how Polygence Inc. ("Polygence," "we," "our," "us") collects, uses, and discloses certain personal information obtained through our website (the "Site"), which is located at https://www.polygence.org/. By visiting our Site and/or using the features made available to you on the Site (the "Services"), you are agreeing to the terms of this Policy.

What Information We Collect and Maintain About You

We collect information from you directly when you provide it to us through the website. We may also automatically collect certain information about you and your computer, smartphone, or other device when you use, access, or interact with our Site.

_ Personal information you provide. _ You can visit the Site without submitting any information that we can use to identify you personally. However, if you use certain features on the Site, such as the "Contact Us" feature, or if you sign up for our newsletter, you will be required to provide personal information. Such information includes, for example, your name, telephone number, and email address. Our online contact form also contains a "Your Message" field through which you may submit additional personal information.

If you are a student and you apply to the online academy available through our Services, we may collect information, including your name, age, contact information, information about your parent/guardian (if the student is under 18), and information about your school. Similarly, if you are a parent of a student, we may collect information such as your name, contact information, and interest in our program. Similarly, if you apply to be a mentor through our Services, we may collect information such as your name, contact information, education information, and work experience. Additionally, if you are a student, parent or a mentor and you use our online messaging service or write a blog post for us, we may collect any information that you provide through those functions.

By providing your phone number and submitting this form, you agree to receive telemarketing calls or texts at this number using an automated telephone dialing system from Polygence. Polygence may also communicate with you by phone or text for other non-marketing purposes at the number you provide. Consent is not required as a condition of purchase and there is no obligation to provide us with your number. Reply HELP for help and STOP to cancel. Msg frequency varies. Msg and data rates may apply.

We also collect information automatically from you when you access our Services, as described below.

_ Video sessions _. We integrate video conferencing services provided by Zoom in order to connect students and mentors through our Services. As part of this function, Zoom and Polygence collect any information that you share through these videos, as well as information about your usage of Zoom through the Services (such as the day/time and length of your Zoom sessions). This information is governed by both this Policy and Zoom's privacy policy and terms of service.

Unless either party opts-out, Polygence records all video sessions and makes them available to both students and mentors. Mentors and Students may opt-out if a formal request to the program director has been approved and the appropriate waiver is signed. Mentors must also prevent inadvertent or inappropriate distractions, either by situating themselves close to a plain wall or using a virtual background. Polygence further uses the information it obtains from these recordings and about these recordings (in a non-identifiable manner) for its own research and development purposes. Students or mentors may also contact us through the information provided below if they wish to opt out of us using the videos for research and development purposes.

Transcripts from recorded sessions may be algorithmically analyzed (without human involvement) to aggregate insights about the mentor's teaching methodology, for example, the total time the mentor and student(s) spent talking in the given session. This information will be automatically sent to the mentor to provide feedback on the interactiveness of their teaching.

By using the Services and connecting with a student or mentor through Zoom, you expressly consent to our use of Zoom and to us recording your Zoom video sessions (unless you opt out) through our Services.

_ Server logs. _ Server logs automatically record information and details about your online interactions with us. For example, server logs may record information about your visit to our Site on a particular time and day and collect information such as your IP address or your device ID.

_ Cookies. _ We also use cookies on the Site. Cookies are small files that are stored on your computer by your web browser. A cookie allows the Site to recognize whether you have visited before and may store user preferences and other information. For example, cookies can be used to collect or store information about your use of the Site during your current session and over time (including the pages you view and the files you download), your computer's operating system and browser type, your Internet service provider, your domain name and IP address, your general geographic location, the website that you visited before the Site, and the link you used to leave the Site. If you are concerned about having cookies on your computer, you can set your browser to refuse all cookies or to indicate when a cookie is being set, allowing you to decide whether to accept it. You can also delete cookies from your computer. However, if you choose to block or delete cookies, certain features of the Site may not operate correctly.

_ Pixel tags. _ A pixel tag (also known as a web beacon, clear GIF, pixel, or tag) is an image or a small string of code that may be placed in a website, advertisement, or email. It allows companies to set or read cookies or transfer information to their servers when you load a webpage or interact with online content. For example, we or our service providers may use pixel tags to determine whether you have interacted with a specific part of our Site, viewed a particular advertisement, or opened a specific email.

_ SDKs and mobile advertising IDs _. Our Services may include third-party software development kits ("SDKs") that allow us and our service providers to collect information about your activity. In addition, some mobile devices come with a resettable advertising ID (such as Apple's IDFA and Google's Advertising ID) that, like cookies and pixel tags, allow us and our service providers to identify your mobile device over time for advertising purposes.

_ Third-party plugins _. Our Services may include plugins from other companies, including social media companies (e.g., the Facebook "Like" button). These plugins may collect information, such as information about the pages you visit, and share it with the company that created the plugin even if you do not click on the plugin. These third-party plugins are governed by the privacy policies and terms of the companies that created them.

_ Third-party online tracking and behavioral advertising _. We also may partner with certain third parties to collect, analyze, and use some of the personal and other information described in this section. For example, we may allow third parties to set cookies or use web beacons on the Site or in email communications from us. This information may be used for a variety of purposes, including online interest-based advertising, as discussed below (see the section entitled "With whom we share your information").

How We Use and Process Your Information

Polygence uses the information that we collect for a variety of purposes. Our legal bases for processing your personal information are: 1) our legitimate interest in running and maintaining our business; 2) performance and fulfillment of our contracts; 3) your consent; and 4) compliance with our legal obligations. In many instances, more than one of these legal bases apply to the processing of your personal information.

The primary purpose for which we use your information is to offer our Services to you by providing an online academy for students to connect with top academics regarding cutting-edge research projects.

Other purposes for which we use your information include to:

  • Respond to your questions or requests concerning the Services offered by us;

  • Fulfill the terms of any agreement you have with us;

  • Fulfill your requests for our Services or otherwise complete a transaction that you initiate;

  • Communicate with you about our Services and other topics that are likely to be of interest to you, including newsletters, updates, or other communications, including promotional emails and advertising;

  • Deliver confirmations, account information, notifications, and similar operational communications;

  • Improve your user experience and the quality of our products and services;

  • Comply with legal and/or regulatory requirements;

  • Count and recognize visitors to the Site;

  • Analyze how visitors use the Site and various Site features;

  • Improve the Site and enhance users' experiences with the Site;

  • Create new products and services or improve our existing products and Services;

  • Enable additional website analytics and research concerning the Site;

  • Engage in interest-based advertising (as described below); and

  • Manage our business.

Polygence may link information gathered through the Site with information that we collect in other contexts. But in that event, we will handle the combined information in a manner consistent with this Policy.

With Whom and Why We Share Your Information

We share your information with other parties for a variety of purposes, as described below.

_ To provide our Services _. If you are a student and are selected to participate in our online learning academy, we will share the information that you provide in your application (including your contact information) with the mentor that you are assigned to. Additionally, with your consent, we will also share your information with any consulting firms, consultants, schools, or teachers that may have referred you to our program. This information could include the information you provide on your application, your payment status, and your interactions with your mentor.

If you are a student that is under the age of 18, we may share any information that you provide to us or your mentor with your parent or guardian.

_ Third-party service providers. _ Polygence uses third-party service providers that perform services on our behalf, including web-hosting companies, mailing vendors, and analytics providers. These service providers may collect and/or use your information, including information that identifies you personally, to assist us in achieving the purposes discussed above.

If you make a payment through the Services, we use a third-party vendor, Stripe, to process that payment. Any information you provide to make a payment using Stripe is governed by Stripe's Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

_Business partners. _ We may share your information with companies we have partnered with so that they can market products and services that might be of interest to you. For example, we may share your contact information with college admissions counselors so that they can offer you their services and help you with the college admissions process.

_ Analytics _. We partner with certain third parties to obtain the automatically collected information discussed above and to engage in analysis, auditing, research, and reporting. These third parties may use web logs or web beacons, and they may set and access cookies on your computer or other device. In particular, the Site uses Matomo Analytics to help collect and analyze certain information for the purposes discussed above. You may opt out of the use of cookies by Matomo Analytics here.

_ Interest-based Advertising. _ The Site also enables third-party tracking mechanisms to collect information about you and your computing devices for use in online interest-based advertising. For example, third parties, such as Facebook, may use the fact that you visited our Site to target online ads to you. In addition, our third-party advertising networks might use information about your use of our Site to help target advertisements based on your online activity in general. For information about interest-based advertising practices, including privacy and confidentiality, visit the Network Advertising Initiative website or the Digital Advertising Alliance website.

The use of online tracking mechanisms by third parties is subject to those third parties' own privacy policies, and not this Policy. If you prefer to prevent third parties from setting and accessing cookies on your computer or other device, you may set your browser to block cookies. Additionally, you may remove yourself from the targeted advertising of companies within the Network Advertising Initiative by opting out here, or of companies participating in the Digital Advertising Alliance by opting out here. Although our Site currently does not respond to "do not track" browser headers, you can limit tracking through these third-party programs and by taking the other steps discussed above.

Legal purposes. We also may use or share your information with third parties when we believe, in our sole discretion, that doing so is necessary:

  • To comply with applicable law or a court order, subpoena, or other legal process;
  • To investigate, prevent, or take action regarding illegal activities, suspected fraud, violations of our terms and conditions, or situations involving threats to our property or the property or physical safety of any person or third party;
  • To establish, protect, or exercise our legal rights or defend against legal claims; or
  • To facilitate the financing, securitization, insuring, sale, assignment, bankruptcy, or other disposal of all or part of our business or assets.

_ Other purposes. _ We may share your information with other third parties when necessary to fulfill your requests for services; to complete a transaction that you initiate; to meet the terms of any agreement that you have with us or our partners; or to manage our business.

_ Aggregated or deidentified information _. From time to time, we may also share aggregated or deidentified information about users of the Services, such as by publishing a report on trends in the usage of the Site or collaborating with Stanford University for research purposes. Such aggregated or deidentified information will not identify you personally.

Your Choices

If you want to learn more about the personal information that Polygence has about you or you would like to update or change that information, please contact us by email at [email protected]. If you are a student or a mentor, you may also contact us to delete your account and the personal information we have associated with it.

You may also opt out of receiving marketing emails from us by following the instructions in those emails or by emailing us at [email protected].

EU Residents

If you are an EU resident, you have certain rights available to you under the General Data Protection Regulation. These rights are:

  • The right to be informed about our data collection practices;
  • The right to access and rectify your data;
  • The right to erase your data;
  • The right to data portability;
  • The right to restrict and object to the processing of your data (including for direct marketing purposes); and
  • The right to withdraw your consent (to the extent applicable).

To exercise any of the rights listed above, please contact us via email at [email protected]. We will respond to your request within thirty (30) days of receiving it.

External links

This Site may contain links to third-party websites. If you use these links, you will leave the Site. We have not reviewed these third-party sites and do not control and are not responsible for any of these sites, their content, or their privacy policy. Thus, we do not endorse or make any representations about them, or any information, software, or other products or materials found there, or any results that may be obtained from using them. If you decide to access any of the third-party sites listed on our website, you do so at your own risk.

Data Security

We employ physical, technical, and administrative procedures to safeguard the personal information we collect online. However, no website is 100% secure, and we cannot ensure or warrant the security of any information you transmit to the Site or to us, and you transmit such information at your own risk.

Data Retention

We retain personal information about you necessary to fulfill the purpose for which that information was collected or as required or permitted by law. We do not retain information longer than is necessary for us to achieve the purposes for which we collected it. When we destroy your personal information, we do so in a way that prevents that information from being restored or reconstructed.

International Users

The information that we collect through or in connection with the Site is transferred to and processed in the United States for the purposes described above. Polygence may also subcontract the processing of your data to, or otherwise share your data with, affiliates or third parties in the United States or countries other than your country of residence. The data-protection laws in these countries may be different from, and less stringent than, those in your country of residence. By using the Site or by providing any personal or other information to us, you expressly consent to such transfer and processing.


Students that are at least 13 years of age but under the age of 18 may fill out an application and sign up for our online learning academy with the consent of their parent or guardian. We do not knowingly collect personally information from children under the age of 13.

Changes to this Policy

Polygence may make changes to the Site in the future and as a consequence will need to revise this Policy to reflect those changes. Polygence will post all such changes on the Site, so you should review this page periodically.

How to Contact Us

Should you have any questions or concerns about this Policy, you can contact us by email at [email protected] or by postal mail at Polygence - Building B South, 333 Ravenswood Ave, Menlo Park, CA 94025