Clearer Mozilla Privacy Website & Policies

Denelle Dixon-Thayer

**APRIL 16 UPDATE: the privacy policies are now updated, and you can view them here. Thanks to everyone who provided input on draft policies. We have updated the post below to remove links that are now out of date.**

Over the last year, a group of Mozillians have been exploring how to make our privacy website and policies better.  For example, the Firefox Privacy Policy (Update: link now points to an archived version of previous policy) is over 14 pages long and can be hard to parse – we don’t like that.  Given our focus on transparency and privacy, we wanted to create a framework that:

  1. Is easy to understand yet detailed enough to provide transparency.
  2. Gives users an opportunity to dive deeper into the technical aspects of our policy for specific products.
  3. Does not modify our practices but clarifies how we communicate them.
  4. Allows each product to have its own notice that is simple, clear and usable.

We now have an approach that we want to share and gather input on before implementing. I want to make it clear that although we’re rewriting the text of our privacy notices, we are NOT changing our practices. Our goal is only to make the notices easier to digest and provide users with the information they care about most, including new ways to access more detail if they are interested.

Here’s an overview of the new approach:

  • We’ve consolidated the parts of our products’ various privacy policies that are the same into a “Mozilla Privacy Policy.” Because we believe our approach to user data should be consistent regardless of the product, we’ve centralized as much as we can.
  • We’ve created an individual “Privacy Notice” for any policy that’s specific to an individual product.  We’ll be rewriting all our product notices to fit this mold, but are starting with Firefox and Mozilla websites.
  • We believe there are a group of users who want a more detailed explanation of how features work at a technical level. To provide this detail, we’re also creating new SUMO articles for features (like our Firefox Health Report page) that give users a deeper understanding of those products and will link to those explanations within each Product Privacy Notice.
  • As always, we make all the code that we’ve created in our projects available in source code and under open and permissive licenses so you can see how each feature works in the code itself. We’d like to encourage people to get involved in one of our dev channels such as mozilla.dev.privacy and mozilla.dev.planning, or by looking at the code for each project.

We welcome any questions or input you have through our Governance mailing list.  Our current plan is to implement these changes on April 15.

Our new privacy hub layout features our Privacy Policy on the center of the page and lists our Product Privacy Notices along the right.

Our new privacy hub layout features our Privacy Policy on the center of the page and lists our Product Privacy Notices along the right.

 

We added "learn more" options with bullet points and headings for users to more easily learn about issues.

We added “learn more” / “show less” options for users to more easily find information.