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Privacy policy

Valid from 8 February 2016

Your privacy matters to us. This policy outlines the information we collect from you — and what we do with it.

Canonical collects personal information from you in a number of different ways. For example, when you download one of our products, receive services from us or use one of our websites (including and

At Canonical, we consider your privacy to be extremely important to us. These are the fundamental principles that we follow in relation to your personal information:

  • We don't ask you for personal information unless we truly need it.
  • We don't share your personal information with anyone except to provide you with services, products, to comply with the law, or to protect our rights.
  • We don't store personal information unless required for the on-going operation of services to you, to provide you with products, to comply with law or to protect our rights.
  • We will use personal information that you provide to us in accordance with this privacy policy.

Latest version

This is a previous version of this document, please refer to the latest version.

What we collect

We may collect the following types of personal information from you:


When you register to use certain parts of our websites, such as wikis or message boards, or register for free accounts, we may ask for personal information such as your full name, email address and a password.

Chat rooms, forums and newsgroups

These are available to our community. Any information that you disclose in these areas becomes public information and may be recorded, archived and republished by anyone. Please exercise caution when deciding to disclose any personal information in such areas.

Canonical products

When you register for services or purchase any product from Canonical, we may ask for information such as your email address, billing address, and credit card information. Credit card information is only used in processing your transaction. Please note that we may use a third party payment processing merchant to process your payments.

Non-personally identifying information

Canonical may collect non-personally-identifying information of the sort that web browsers and servers typically make available, such as the browser type, referring site, and the date and time of each visitor's request. Our purpose in collecting non-personally identifying information is to better understand how visitors use our websites and services. For further information about how we use cookies, see the "cookie" section below.

Error reports

When you chose to send an error report, it includes a unique identifier for your computer. This identifier does not identify you, unless you (or someone acting on your behalf) discloses it separately. An error report may include personal information such as the state of programs that were running at the time. You can block future error reports from the privacy panel of System Settings.

Ubuntu online accounts

When you use Ubuntu online accounts, your personal information is stored on your PC and it can be accessed by some applications. View the legal notice explaining how we use this personal information.


If you contact us and provide us with information, we may keep a record of that correspondence and information

Searching in the dash

When you enter a search term into the dash Ubuntu will search your Ubuntu computer and will record the search terms locally. Depending on whether you have opted in or out (see the "Online Search" section below), we may also send your keystrokes as a search term to and selected third parties so that we may complement your search results with online search results from such third parties including: Facebook, Twitter, BBC and Amazon. Canonical and these selected third parties will collect your search terms and use them to provide you with search results while using Ubuntu.

By searching in the dash you consent to:

  1. the collection and use of your search terms and IP address in this way; and
  2. the storage of your search terms and IP address by Canonical and such selected third parties (if applicable).

Canonical will only use your search terms and IP address in accordance with this Privacy Policy. For information on how our selected third parties may use your information, please see their privacy policies.

You may restrict your dash so that we don't send searches to third parties and you don't receive online search results. To do this go to the Privacy panel and toggle the 'Include online search results' option. The Privacy panel can be found in your System Settings or via a dash search.

What do we do with the information we collect?

We may use your information in the following ways:

  • To authenticate access to certain features of our websites.
  • To contact you to respond to enquiries or to provide notices to you regarding your use of our websites or the provision of our services.
  • To provide services, products, process payment, and authenticate access (where required).
  • To analyse the performance or the appropriateness of products or services.
  • To comply with legal and regulatory requirements (including responding to court orders, subpoenas and to prevent crime). These special circumstances may require us to disclose personal information.
  • To contact you if your actions violate your agreement with us (if any).
  • To fix errors and analyse trends.
  • To study how anonymous users interact with our websites and services.
  • To market our products or services to you.

Unless you have notified us otherwise, Canonical may occasionally send you email to tell you about new features, solicit feedback, or just to keep you up to date with what's going on. We may use various community websites (Launchpad Answers, Ubuntu Forums, blogs etc.) to communicate this type of information, so we expect to keep this type of information to a minimum. If you no longer wish to receive such communications from us, please follow the unsubscribe instructions provided in any of the communications, modify the communications preferences in your account or contact us using the contact details provided below.


The information you provide to us will be held on computers and may be accessed by or given to our staff working inside and outside of the UK and to third parties, including contractors and companies within Canonical's group, for the purposes set out in this Privacy Policy, i.e. to provide you with products or services, or as otherwise agreed with you.

You acknowledge that it may be necessary for your information to be processed by such parties and that it may be transferred to someone who provides a service to us in another country, including some outside of the European Economic Area, and you consent to such processing and transfer. If it is necessary to transfer your personal information outside of the European Economic Area we will make every effort to ensure that the person to whom we pass the personal information agrees to treat it with the same level of protection as we do.

If we are sold or merge with another business entity your personal information may be disclosed to our new business partners or owners.

Unless required by law, we will not otherwise share, sell or distribute any personal information you provide to us without your consent.


We use persistent cookies to support a smooth user experience. This cookie remains on your computer after you close your browser and may be used by your browser on subsequent visits to our websites. We also use cookies to better understand how you interact with our websites and services and to improve our websites and services overall.

Cookies we use:

site cookie acceptance


This cookie is used to record if a user has accepted the use of cookies on our website. To withdraw your consent after accepting this cookie, delete the _cookies_accepted cookie.

More about cookies

Google Analytics

_utma, _utmb, _utmc, _utmz

These cookies are used to collect information about how visitors use our website, which we use to help improve it. The cookies collect information in an anonymous form, including the number of visitors to the site, where visitors have come to the site from and the pages they visited.

Google Analytics privacy



Crazyegg tracks javascript on some pages of our site to understand what links our visitors are clicking on. This helps us optimise our content for the best user experience. The Crazyegg script may store a cookie on your computer. This cookie may contain a session ID, a visitor ID and a few other dynamically created parameters that allow Crazyegg to track our site's traffic accurately. No personal information is stored within the cookie.

Crazy Egg's complete Privacy Policy

Marketo Munchkin


Marketo's cookie allows us to track repeated visits to the website, and link each visit to the information voluntarily provided by the visitor. For example, if the visitor is asked to provide us with their name, company name and email address, we will know the identity of the visitor when they visit the site at a later date, or when we send them email.

Marketo's complete Privacy Policy

If you do not wish to have cookies placed on your computers, please set your browsers to refuse cookies before visiting our websites and using our services.

How do we protect the information we collect

Canonical is very concerned about protecting the confidentiality of your personal information. We have security measures, including administrative, physical and electronic measures, to protect against the loss, exposure, misuse or alteration of information that we have collected from you in the use of the services. These measures include SSL data encryption to transmit your personal information as well as technical architectures and systems to prevent unauthorised third parties from accessing your personal information.