At Earnest, we believe fairness and transparency are values that are fundamental to finance. That value powers all of the decisions we make, including how we gather and respect your personal information. We’ve written our policy to be as clear and straightforward as possible to empower and inform you about your privacy while on Earnest’s website.
Your Data is private
The login details of your linked accounts, such as usernames and passwords, are not accessible to anyone at Earnest. The financial and personal data we use to process your loan is stored securely by a trusted third-party partner.
Your data is not a product
We do not sell your information. To process loan applications we may need to share information provided by you with our partners so that they can perform requested services – but your information is never for sale.
Your data is protected
All data entered into the Earnest site is encrypted using industry-standard SHA-256 SSL technology before being sent to our servers in an off-site data center. Our servers are supported by multiple levels of protection including firewalls, private subnets and multi-factor authentication.
Privacy & Security Policy
We believe that you deserve the utmost respect when it comes to the privacy of your personal information. As you use our services, we want you to be clear how we are using information and the ways in which you can protect your privacy. The terms “we,” “us,” and “Earnest” refer to Earnest Inc., a Delaware corporation, its subsidiaries, and affiliates.
Information We Collect
Information we collect while you use our site helps us improve our services. During the loan application process we also request and collect personal and financial information from you, such as your name and address.
We may collect information from you when you use the Earnest site. We also collect personal and financial information during the registration and loan approval process. Additional information may be gathered during your future use of the site. Information that we collect may include personally identifying information, such as your name, address, email address, telephone number, or social security number. We may also collect financial information such as your income, account balance, payment history, credit history, or credit scores.
We and/or our service providers may also collect information that is about you. We and/or our service providers may use this aggregated information in the administration of our Site to improve its usability, evaluate the success of particular marketing/advertising campaigns, and help optimize our Site based on your needs. This may include your internet protocol (IP) address, geographical location, browser type, referral source, length of visit, number of page views, or cookies and anonymous identifiers.
How we use information we collect
We use this information to help us verify your identity, communicate with you during and after the approval process, and underwrite your loan. We also use some of this information to improve our loan offerings, our site and advertisements, and to let you know when we have new services available. You can update the personal information you give us any time by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We may also use this information to ensure that any content we display are relevant based on information you included in your profile and your use of the Earnest site.
Earnest may also use your personal information to facilitate activities and transactions that need to occur during the lending process, such as:
- To establish that you are over the age of 18;
- To verify your identity and guard against potential fraud;
- To pull a credit report from a credit bureau, such as Experian, to help determine your creditworthiness;
- To determine your eligibility for an Earnest loan;
- To enable our financial services partners to implement automatic payments and fund transfers;
- To contact you if there is a problem completing a transaction you requested or to discuss a problem with your account;
- To implement collection activities as needed; and/or
- To maintain regular communications with you concerning transactions you initiate, including but not limited to requesting information or assistance, submitting a loan request, and making payments.
More generally, we may use information that we collect from you or that you provide to us:
- To provide, maintain, protect and improve our services, to develop new ones, and to protect Earnest and our users;
- To notify you about changes to the Earnest site or any products or services we offer or provide though it;
- To keep a record of your communication to help solve any issues you might be facing;
- For our marketing purposes to offer our products and services to you, such as advertisements, by us through third parties;
- To offer you tailored content giving you more relevant search results and ads;
- To fulfill any other purpose for which you provide it or otherwise give your consent; and/or
- To comply with any court order, law, or legal process, including retaining personal data or responding to any government or regulatory request.
Information You Share
Your information is available to be reviewed and updated on your account profile page at any time. You can also send a request to email@example.com. Some information regarding your loan application cannot be changed due to laws or legal requirements, and in those cases we may not be able to accommodate your request.
You can review and change your personal information by logging into the Earnest site and visiting your account profile page. You may also email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to request access to, correct, or delete any personal information that you have provided to us. We may not accommodate a request to change information if we believe the change would violate any law or legal requirement or cause the information to be incorrect.
Information We Share
Earnest may share information with third parties as described below.
Earnest may also use certain remarketing services to advertise on third-party websites to previous visitors to our site. This means that we may advertise to previous visitors who haven’t completed a task on our site (like completing a loan application). This could be in the form of an advertisement on a search results page, or a site in the network of our remarketing partners.
Partners & Service Providers
Some of the services that are offered through the Earnest site may be provided by third-party partners, like Experian. We may also outsource some of Earnest’s functions to third-party providers, such as data storage providers, platform administrators, credit bureaus, collection agencies, loan servicers, payment processing functions, and/or other services. We may share information from or about you with these third-party providers so that they can perform the requested services or complete your requests.
You can connect your loan application to your accounts on third-party services, like LinkedIn, in which case we may collect and store information identifying your account with the third-party service. We may use the information to inform your application.
When you connect an account with us, you are requesting our third-party financial aggregator, Intuit, to create a new ‘token’ for Earnest. That token gives access to view account information without giving permissions to perform any other action inside that account.
We may share aggregated, non-identifiable user information with third parties, such as advertisers and content distributors. For example, we may disclose the number of users that have been exposed to or clicked on advertisements.
The Earnest site may contain links to unaffiliated third-party websites. Except as described in this policy, we do not share your personal information with them, and are not responsible for their privacy practices. We suggest you read the privacy policies on all such third-party websites.
We may disclose information from or about you if we have a good faith belief that such investigation or disclosure is (a) reasonably necessary to comply with legal process and law enforcement instructions and orders, such as a search warrant, subpoena, statute, judicial proceeding, or other legal process served on us; (b) helpful to prevent, investigate, or identify possible wrongdoing in connection with the Site; or (c) protect our rights, reputation, property, or that of our users, affiliates, or the public.
Cookies help us protect your account’s security, and allow us to personalize your Earnest experience.
Most importantly, cookies help us protect your account’s security. Cookies may be stored only during an individual session (“Session ID cookies”) or have long-term expiration dates (“persistent cookies”). Session ID cookies follow your activities on our site so that we can ensure that no one is making changes to your profile or applying for loans, and expire when you close your browser. Persistent cookies that remain on your hard drive for an extended period of time so that we can recognize you when you return to our Site.
The following is a list of the types of cookies that Earnest and its third-party partners use:
These Cookies make the Earnest site work in the way you expect it to.
Authentication, Security, and Compliance
We use these to prevent fraud, protect your data from unauthorized parties, and comply with legal requirements.
These Cookies help the Earnest site remember information about how you prefer the site to behave and look.
We use these Cookies to give us notice of information or options that we think could improve your use of the Earnest site.
These Cookies make advertising more relevant to you and more valuable to advertisers.
These Cookies help us understand how visitors use the Earnest site.
It may be possible to disable some Cookies through your device or browser settings, but doing so may affect your ability to use the Site. The method for disabling cookies may vary by device and browser, but can usually be found in preferences or security settings.
Protecting Your Information
Earnest takes your privacy and security seriously. We have enabled HTTPS access to our site, in addition to SSL technology, and your login information of your financial accounts is not accessible to anyone at Earnest. This data is stored offsite. Additionally, there are a number of precautions you can take to protect the security of your computer, including selecting a strong Earnest password and not sharing it with anyone.
Earnest takes steps to safeguard your personal information through vigorous physical, electronic, and operational policies and practices:
- Session Time-Outs: We employ session time-outs to protect your account. You will be logged out of the site after thirty minutes. This reduces the risk of others being able to access your account if you leave your computer unattended.
- Protection of Account Numbers: After you have entered your account numbers, we will never display your account number.
- Passwords: At a minimum, we require the use of both numbers and letters in your password. We have also instituted secure steps by which you can regain access to your account should you forget your password, including email reset. Your password is not known to any employee or third party with whom we may partner, and we will never ask you for your passwords as a means of identifying yourself. If you ever receive an email purporting to come from Earnest that asks for your password, you should immediately report this to email@example.com.
- Secure, Off-Site Hosting: We store your personal and sensitive financial data such as Social Security numbers and bank accounts in a virtual private cloud hosted by Amazon Web Services.
- Defined Service Access points: Data can only be read or written through defined service access points, the use of which is password-protected and limited to only those employees or third parties who have a need to know.
- Secure Socket Layer certificate technology: We equip our servers with SSL certificate technology to provide a safe and secure channel to visit the Earnest site.
- Data encryption: SSL also ensures that all data entered into the Earnest site is encrypted. For further encryption protection, we require a 128-bit secure browser for logins and transactions.
- Network firewalls: There is no inbound communication allowed between data and application servers and the Internet.
Communications from Earnest
Earnest may send you notifications regarding your account. You cannot opt out of these notifications as they are in place to help protect your privacy and security, but you can opt out of any additional marketing communications. You can do this by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of any marketing communications you receive.
To protect your account, Earnest may send you notifications that confirm actions taken on your account. These notifications are typically sent to notify you of a change in status, or for legal or security purposes. For example, you may receive notifications confirming your registration and the successful submission of loan requests, as well as requests from us for additional information and reminders to sign your loan agreement.
You cannot opt out of these notifications as they are in place to protect the security of your account and personal information. We do this for your own protection so that you can be sure no one else is making changes to your account without your knowledge. However, the security offered by these notifications can be undermined if other people have access to your email account.
Although we do our best to protect your personal information, we cannot guarantee the security of your personal information transmitted to our Site. Even under the best of circumstances, the transmission of information via the internet is not completely secure. Any transmission of personal information is done at your own risk. In the event of a data breach, we will comply with the notification guidelines required by federal law as well as the laws of each state in which we do business.
What Can I Do To Protect My Security?
Use a strong password, do not share it, and only log onto your Earnest account from a secured computer with virus protection.
You can take several precautions to protect the security of your computer and personal information.
- Use a unique password that you do not use for any other service.
- To choose a strong password, avoid using any information that others can easily learn about you, such as a family member’s name or birthday, and use special characters in place of letters.
- Change your Earnest password frequently.
- Do not share your Earnest password with anyone.
- Restrict access to the email account you registered with on the Earnest site.
- Install and regularly update antivirus and firewall software to protect your computer from external attacks by malicious users.
- Do not log onto your Earnest account in public areas where the internet is unsecured.
- Logout and close the browser window when you are finished with a session on the Earnest site.
Compliance With State And Federal Laws
For more information regarding your personal privacy rights and how they may differ in certain states, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
To be certain of your privacy rights, you may wish to contact the agency in your state that is charged with overseeing consumer privacy rights.
This policy was last updated on .
For additional information, or if you have any questions regarding this policy or the privacy practices at Earnest, please submit your questions or comments directly at: email@example.com.
1455 Market Street, 18th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94103