Privacy Policy (v7, rev 8/28/13)

BCBSA AskBlue® Program

Your privacy is important to us. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association ("BCBSA" or "we") protects your privacy at the AskBlue® program and on this Web site ("Site"). Here is what you ("End User" or "you") can expect when you visit this Site:

PLEASE REMEMBER that this Privacy Policy covers only the data collection and use practices for this Site, which is an official Web site of BCBSA. BCBSA's privacy policies may differ at other of its Web sites or in BCBSA’s off-line data collection and reporting practices. Information that you provide to us on this Site is not protected by the HIPAA Privacy Rule, 45 CFR Part 164. You should address any questions regarding the privacy policy of any of the independent, local Blue Cross and/or Blue Shield Companies (each, a"Blue Company") directly to that Blue Company. Your authorization for BCBSA’s use and disclosure of information, and how to revoke that authorization, appear separately in this Site’s Terms of Use.

The Information We Collect

No personally identifiable information ("Personally Identifiable Information" or "PII") collected at the Site will be used by any Blue Company to affect your health insurance coverage or premiums.

While using the Site, you may, among other things, gather information, receive information from third parties, provide personal information, or download content. In doing so, we will collect certain information about you in order to assist your use of the Site and to monitor, manage and assist the other Blue Companies, as well as third party contractors, consultants, and vendors who may be involved or assist with the Site, and to improve, revise and expand this Site. The Site’s Web servers automatically capture your domain name, the IP address of the Web page from which you enter the Site, the pages you visit on the Site and the amount of time you spend here, and the number of end users and frequency and manner of your use of the Site. We may also collect information regarding the use of other features of the Site, such as the extent to which certain features are used, and what you access. Some of this information is statistical information that reflects the scope of the Site’s end user base, use patterns, and related information. We use this information to better understand how the Site is used, and to improve and expand the Site and experience of end users. In addition, certain information is collected by BCBSA and its third-party vendors and other third parties to enable proper operation of certain tools that may be located on or linked to this Site (including, but not limited to, such information that may be collected during the course of calculating estimates for the federal premium assistance, etc.). We use this information for purposes including, but not limited to, the following: to help you calculate the estimated federal premium assistance (also known as the federal premium subsidy); to understand consumer health coverage needs and enhance the site accordingly; and to provide Blue Companies with consumer information for Blue Companies to provide updates on information related to healthcare reform and to reach out to consumers for general marketing and communications purposes. Such information also is used to facilitate and monitor any activity on this Site.

Use of the Information this Site Gathers/Tracks

PII refers to information that lets us know the specifics of who you are, and can be used to identify, contact, or locate you and to manage your activity on or use of the Site. PII is requested when you visit the Site, fill out surveys, participate in contests or sweepstakes, correspond with us or otherwise volunteer information (for example, and not by way of exclusion, through the use of the estimator for federal premium assistance or when you have us send emails or to provide you with information). PII might include, among other things, your name, zip code, mailing address, telephone number, mobile phone number, email address, gender, birth year, household income, Blue Company affiliation, referring URL, IP address, and other identification and contact information, as well as similar information on anyone to whom you may share or forward information from this Site. With this information, we can fill your requests, improve and expand the Site, and better provide you with personalized and useful tools and information. You also may have the option of importing information into certain Web sites (including, but not limited to, this Site) from third-party software. This information may include the types of information described above, as well as other types of information that you have entered into these third-party programs. This information may be used to fulfill your requests, to communicate with you, to support your online activities, to respond to your questions, to customize your experience and to customize the content or features of the Site and the services available thereon. We may use your PII to notify you of changes to the Site and/or services, the Terms of Use, and/or this Privacy Policy. We may also use your PII to personalize your interactive experience on the Site. For example, if you have given us permission, we may use your information to inform you of other products or services that you may find valuable. We may also use the PII you provide to make improvements that better serve end users' needs, and we may share this PII with third parties who assist us in operating and managing the Site, offering you additional information, products or services, and in fulfilling and monitoring your activities.

If you prefer not to receive information about additional products and services that we think you may be interested in, click here to send an email indicating that you no longer wish to receive such information and provide us with your name and email address(es) at which you received such unwanted communications.

Disclosure of Information

We may share your PII among BCBSA divisions and business groups, Blue Companies and its and their affiliates, consultants and contractors. Additionally, we may share your PII with third parties, including third parties: who perform services for us in operating and marketing the products and services available on the Site (including but not limited to the monitoring of user behavior on the Site); as necessary to provide marketing, data, and other information related to user PII for measuring information of audiences responding to public advertisement and offers; special situations, including responding to governmental officers and agencies and in response to legal process such as a court order or subpoena; to prevent or combat fraud; as required by federal or state law; enforcement of the Terms of Use; and in connection with the protection of the rights, property, or safety of BCBSA, a Blue Company, end users, or others; and in connection with a merger, acquisition, or liquidation of BCBSA, its subsidiaries or affiliates.


BCBSA is committed to taking appropriate measures to protect your privacy against unauthorized disclosures. BCBSA’s third party web vendor uses a variety of secure techniques designed to protect your information. While safeguards have been implemented, you should be aware that Internet security technology changes rapidly. As such, we cannot guarantee that the safeguards employed today can protect your PII from the threats of tomorrow, or that the Site’s security measures are failsafe and not subject to circumvention or unauthorized intrusion. You should also be aware that, despite our reasonable efforts, factors beyond our control may result in disclosure of data.

Third-Party Links

Portions of the services and functionality available on the Site may contain links to other third party Web sites that you may access. These other Web sites have their own privacy policies, and you should review those policies before following those links. We cannot control the information disclosed at these third-party Web sites or how that information is used.

Young Children

We do not knowingly collect or use information from children under the age of 18 without the consent of a parent or guardian. To best protect your child’s privacy, please supervise your child’s access to the Internet, and this Site’s content, carefully. For more information on how to protect your child’s privacy, you can visit the Federal Trade Commission's Kids privacy page, accessible via

Making Changes to the Information You Provide to Us

Information that you provide voluntarily will be maintained as long as BCBSA deems appropriate to fulfill the purpose for which you provided the information, the AskBlue® program, the intents of this Site, or other purposes in accordance with this Privacy Policy or until you ask us to remove it. PII provided voluntarily by you may be retained indefinitely for the purposes described in this Privacy Policy.


When you visit this Site, we may place a temporary "session" or a persistent cookie on your computer that will allow us to customize and enhance your experience at the Site, to make improvements to the Site, or to report Site activity. Persistent cookies are stored and also used to track visitor activity on or between Blue Company and other Web sites, and to enable login functionality, and to identify Blue Company affiliation and residence (zip code) in order to present national and local information to the applicable members of Blue Companies. You may use your browser controls to refuse to allow cookies to be placed on your computer. Refusing cookies disables our ability to include information about your visit in regular monitoring of Site traffic, and may impact the way the Site functions on your computer.

Changes to this Privacy Policy

Your use of this Site constitutes your acceptance of the terms of this Privacy Policy, as may be amended or revised by us from time to time. We may update this Privacy Policy, from time to time. We may advise you that changes have been made by posting a notice on this Site or otherwise. The date of the latest revisions will be noted above at the beginning of this Privacy Policy. Please consult this Site and the Privacy Policy regularly for any changes.

Notice for End Users Outside of the United States

You should be aware that the United States and other countries have not harmonized their privacy regulations. Because the Site is intended specifically for end users in the United States, we have written this Privacy Policy to satisfy United States regulations. By using the Site and the services available on this Site, you agree to the level of privacy protection set out in this Privacy Policy.

If you have any questions or comments or if you receive any unwanted e-mail from this Site, please contact the Webmaster via e-mail at

Copyright © 2016 Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. All Rights Reserved.

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