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Updated April 18, 2018

Bloomz

  • Privacy polices do indicate a version or effective date.
  • Data are not sold or rented to third parties.
  • Data are shared for advertising or marketing.
  • Behavioral or contextual advertising is not displayed.
  • Data are collected by third-party advertising or tracking services.
  • Data are used to track and target advertisements on other third-party websites or services.
  • Unclear whether this product allows third parties to use data to create ad profiles, data enhancement, and/or targeted advertisements.
The criteria for "Use with Caution" are narrowly focused around data uses related to creating profiles that aren't related to any educational purpose, and using data to target ads. We include both first party (ie, the vendor that builds the service) and third party (any company given access by the vendor) data use. It's worth highlighting that using data to profile students violates multiple state laws, and in some cases also violates federal law.

A service can be designated "Use with Caution" for either a lack of transparency around data use -- which creates the potential for profiling and behavioral targeting -- or for clearly stating that they use data to target advertisements and/or create profiles. As with any application being considered for use within schools, school and/or district staff should review the privacy policies and terms of service to ensure that they meet the legal and practical requirements of their state laws and school policies.

As with the "Not Recommended" criteria, a "Use with Caution" designation is NOT a sign that a vendor is necessarily doing anything unethical or illegal. It is a sign that, based on publicly available policies,  we do not have adequate guarantees that data will not be used by first or third parties to create non-educational profiles or to target behavioral ads.
Use with Caution
Full evaluation
51
Overall Scoreinfo-bubble

This overall score represents how the service addressed all our evaluation questions. A higher score (up to 100) means the service provides more transparent and comprehensive policies.

Overview

Bloomz provides an application to communicate with parents, and to share class photos and updates. The terms of Bloomz state they do not provide any social interactions between students, but the terms specify that any information a user voluntarily chooses to include in a publicly accessible area, such as a public profile page, will be available to anyone who has access to that content, including other users. Bloomz's terms state they collect personal information from a user when they create an account, or automatically while using the service, or from other third party sources. Bloomz's terms do not specify details about its data security practices or whether personally identifiable information is encrypted while in transit or while stored. Bloomz specifies in their terms that they will never use a student’s personally identifiable information, or collect, use, or share that information for any purposes beyond the authorized educational or school purposes..

Bloomz can be accessed through its website, and is available for download at the iOS App Store, and the Google Play Store. The Privacy Policy and Terms of Use accessed for this evaluation can be found on Bloomz’s website, iOS App Store, and the Google Play Store.This evaluation only considers policies that have been made publicly available prior to an individual using the application or service.

Read the Common Sense standard privacy report (SPR)arrow
The standard privacy report (SPR) displays the most important privacy practices from a product’s polices in a single easy-to-read outline. The report displays an alert when a particular privacy practice is risky, unclear, or not evaluated. This alert indicates more time should be focused on these particular details prior to use.
SafetyPromoting responsible use
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Evaluating safety takes into consideration best practices that protect a user's physical and emotional health. A higher score (up to 100) means the service provides more transparent and comprehensive responses related to safety.
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The terms of Bloomz state they do not provide any social interactions between students, but the terms specify that any information a user voluntarily chooses to include in a publicly accessible area, such as a public profile page, will be available to anyone who has access to that content, including other users. The terms also specify that users have the ability to store significant dates and details about family members (like birthdays) in a calendar in order to get email reminders.

PrivacyProtecting collected information
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Evaluating privacy takes into consideration best practices that protect the disclosure of a user's personal information. A higher score (up to 100) means the service provides more transparent and comprehensive responses related to privacy.
53

The terms of Bloomz state they collect personal information from a user when they create an account, or automatically while using the service, or from other third party sources. Bloomz's terms state they will never sell a student’s personally identifiable information to third parties for any purpose, but Bloomz allows third party service providers to use cookies and/or other monitoring technologies to compile anonymous statistics about their visitors. The terms state that Bloomz may use third-party service providers to serve advertisements on their behalf to users across the Internet and on their Apps. However, the terms state Bloomz does not directly target advertisements to students, but may behaviorally target advertising to parents. The terms also specify that Bloomz can receive personally identifiable information from trusted partners and other third-party sources.

SecurityProtecting against unauthorized access
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Evaluating security takes into consideration best practices that protect the integrity and confidentiality of a user's data. A higher score (up to 100) means the service provides more transparent and comprehensive responses related to security.
66

The terms of Bloomz state they use certain physical, managerial, and technical safeguards that are designed to improve the integrity and security of a user’s information. If Bloomz learns of a security systems breach, they may post a notice through its Apps and may attempt to notify a user electronically so they can take appropriate protective steps. However, Bloomz's terms do not specify any additional details about its data security practices or whether personally identifiable information is encrypted while in transit or while stored.

ComplianceFollowing statutory laws and regulations
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Evaluating compliance takes into consideration best practices of companies that collect personal information from children or students and the legal obligations for the privacy and security of that information. A higher score (up to 100) means the service provides more transparent and comprehensive responses related to compliance.
57

The terms of Bloomz state the Service is not intended for use by children under the age of 13, and Bloomz does not knowingly collect personally identifiable information from visitors under the age of 13. In addition, Bloomz's terms state the Service is intended for teacher-parent communication only, and a teacher may request an individual student to input content that was created by that student. However, in no circumstances does Bloomz allow that information to become part of the student's profile without teacher approval and parental consent.

The terms state Information may be provided to Bloomz by teachers, teacher aides, or other personnel at an Educational Institution that is directly related to a student and maintained by the Institution, and may be considered an education record under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act ("FERPA"). Bloomz's terms state information provided about a student, such as student name and grade level, may be considered directory information under FERPA and not an education record.

Lastly, Bloomz specifies in their terms they will never use a student’s personally identifiable information, or collect, use, or share that information for any purposes beyond the authorized educational or school purposes, or as explicitly authorized by the student or parent. The terms state if Bloomz learns that personally identifiable information has been collected on its service from children under the age of 13, and without verifiable parental or teacher consent, then Bloomz will take appropriate steps to delete that information.

About Privacy Evaluations

The privacy evaluations have been designed with the help and support of a consortium of schools and districts across the United States. These evaluations are designed to streamline making an informed decision about the potential privacy implications of educational technology used to support teaching and learning.

Our core evaluation criteria are freely available and will remain freely available. People are encouraged to read the questions we use and the information security primer we released. Vendors are encouraged to use our questions and the information security primer to self-evaluate. You can also learn more about our evaluation process.

Please be in touch with any questions or feedback.