Privacy Policy

This document represents a detailed version of our Privacy Policy, as outlined in the Terms of Service, which you have to agree to, in order to play Paw'D. It aims to give a comprehensive understanding of what is collected, why it is collected, and what is done with it.

Layout of the privacy policy:

  • What is stored, and why
    • Basic information
    • Computer-related information
    • Cookies
    • In-Game Content
  • Who can access the information
  • COPPA Compliance
  • Contact
  • Deleting information

What is stored, and why

Basic information: In order for us to offer you service, you need to choose an account name (which can be any screen name), and a password. These are your credentials that you use to identify yourself towards us. With them, you can access the game itself, and also the forums. Your account name is not visible by default, and we make an effort to hide it in our forum software. Thus, you can assume that the account name you choose is not readily visible to anyone, except our staff.

We also store certain non-personally identifiable 'computer' information: the version of your Flash player, what operating system your computer uses (Windows, MacOS, Linux, ...), its screen resolution, and your computer's internet protocol address. This is done to improve service: for example, if we see that a lot of our players have a certain screen resolution, or use a certain operating system, we may adapt our game client to better suit them, and do extra testing in order to make sure everything works in that particular popular configuration. A computer's internet protocol address can be used to estimate the state and country that players are from. If, for example, we notice that a lot of players are in a particular location, we can use this information to move the server to a location closer to them, and improve the response time.

Cookies: This website uses cookies. There are enough bad things on the Internet that you should worry about; cookies are not one of them. Cookies are small pieces of text that websites can ask your browser to store, and recite on subsequent requests. This is done because the protocol used to access websites is stateless: if you, for example, log in to the forums, and then access the next page, it can not express that you have just logged in. If your browser recites the cookie that the website asks it to store, the website knows that you have logged in before.
The game client itself stores Flash cookies in a similar spirit, namely to remember your settings (such as, whether you want to have sound enabled or not, or what display quality you prefer). Most of these settings are best stored on your computer and not the server: for example, you might want a slower laptop to always use a low quality setting, whereas your fast desktop PC would be fine with high quality.
We also use Google Analytics to get some basic information about how long our visitors stay on certain page, whether they come again, or what browser they use. This helps us identify pages that are popular (and thus should receive extra effort), and pages that need improvement. Google Analytics also stores cookies on your computer (their names start with _ga and __utm), which follow Google's Privacy Policy. We use Google Analytics' Demographics and Interest Reporting to get aggregate information which age groups visit our site, which we use to get a better idea what visitors may be expecting (but of course, we would love to hear from you directly!). Google lets you opt out from that on their Ads Settings page, and they also developed an add-on for that.
You can set your browser and Flash to block cookies, however keep in mind that many of our services will no longer function in this case. For example, our website will no longer be able to remember that you have logged in.

In-Game Content: Within the Paw'D game itself, as accessed through the game client, we store information required for the internal operation of the game, to play the game as is. Namely, we need to store the name you give your character, what other characters you added to your friends and ignore lists, the name you give your guild (if you create one), what you named your pets, the letters you sent using the in-game mail boxes, and so on. This is required so that when you log in the next time, we can show you your friends list again, your pet displays the proper name, and the players you sent letters to can retrieve them. When playing the game, you have the option to type "/tag title" to instruct the server to save a video of your playing session (from when you logged in, to logging out), which you can replay again at a later time. In this case, everything the server sent to or received from you is stored until you delete the video. Beyond that, we store a log of chat and mailbox messages for fourteen days before they are deleted. This is done to protect our players: in case someone says something that makes you feel uncomfortable, you can report it to us, and we are able to check what they did. To help you do this, we added a report tool with which you can bring those situations to our attention. To report a player, either on their name in the chatbox, or right-click their character in game, and select "Report Player". You can also type "/report name" (replace "name" with their name) for the same effect. We may store any information involved in serious reports indefinitely to judge the severity of repeated offenders.

Who can access the information

Generally, any information stored on our server can only be seen by select staff who works on Paw'D. The names that you give your character and your pets can be seen by anyone, if they go to http://www.pawdgame.com/adventurers/your-character-name (replace "your-character-name" with the name of your character) once you have made a bit of progress in-game (specifically, once you reached level 5). When you run into another player in Paw'D, they can see the names you gave your character and your pet, if they hover them with their mouse. If you use the public in-game chat, keep in mind that any player that is in the general location of your own character can see what you typed (certain classes, such as mages or hunters have invisibility and stealth spells, so they can be hidden from sight). If you want to talk to someone, and make sure no other players see it, you can either whisper them (enter their name in the box on the right side, next to the chat box), or you can invite them to a group (right click their character, and select "invite to group"), and then start typing "/p " in your chatbox to talk only to players in your group. If you send in-game mail to another player, that other player can access it. Remember that nothing you say on the Internet is truly private: anyone can take photos of their screens, and what they do with that is outside our control.

With any service, there is always a possibility that someone illegitimately gains access. We take several precautions to limit the damage of such a case. Most importantly, we delete information that is no longer needed: log files are removed after fourteen days. We keep backups to protect ourselves against hard- and software failures, which are stored (in an encrypted fashion) offline, and are destroyed after six months. One-way cryptographic hashes are used so that passwords are not stored in plain-text.

COPPA Compliance

We do not knowledgably store information of any child younger than 13 years without parental consent. If you obtained knowledge that one of the players is younger than 13 years, please contact our staff using either the contact form, or the report tool, including verifyable information how you know that they are younger than 13 years (this may include, for example, the player themselves stating their age within the game, or on another site, and the player admitting that other site belongs to them, or because you are one of their parents or legal guardians). That information needs to be verifyable by us. If you cannot prove their age, please alert that child's parents, and have them contact us.

Parents of children younger than 13 years may give explicit consent, allowing their child to fully interact with the community. Please contact us for further information. When requesting parental consent, we ask for additional information, namely (i) the parent's name, (ii) the parent's e-mail address, and (iii) the child's birthdate. This is done (i) for verification purposes (to verify any person contacting us about the child in future is indeed their parent), and (ii) for possible situations in which the consent form is challenged (to show we could reasonably assume that we were indeed dealing with the child's parent). We realize the additional information is sensitive, and therefore take additional precautions to keep it secure. Each form is stored digitally (using the air-gap principle) on a device not connected to the Internet, protected by industry standard encryption algorithms against physical theft, and is promptly destroyed when it is no longer needed. After giving consent, the parent may contact us at any time to request a copy of any information stored about their child, or to withdraw their consent again. In both cases, that parent should use the e-mail address they gave on the consent form, and include their child's name and birthdate for verification purposes. If consent is withdrawn, all information collected under consent is deleted.

Contact

Please direct any questions or concerns to our support e-mail address, which is composed like this: first, type 'support' without the quotes, then the at-sign, and then add 'pawdgame', then press the period . and then add 'com'..

Deleting Information

In addition to the above, you can also delete your information without our help by deleting all your characters, so that after the 24-hour grace period, your account is empty. Once your account is empty, it will be included in the next clean-up sweep that occurs every fourteen days.