Stories of the Unsolved is a true crime blog that works to raise awareness about unsolved criminal cases. As is discussed more in-depth on our About page, the site is dedicated to highlighting cases under a variety of categories, including missing persons, murder, heists and more. Occasionally, cases that have been solved or have seen a resolution to are also covered.
- WordPress, through which Stories of the Unsolved is hosted. As such, this also includes any websites associated with WordPress and its parent company, Automattic.
- The WordPress mobile app, which is available for iOS and Android.
- Automattic products and services that may be used when accessing Stories of the Unsolved, including Gravatar links and images when a visitor “likes” an article.
Information We Collect
Stories of the Unsolved only collects information about those who visit the site when we have a reason to do so. All information is collected by our Editor and may be stored indefinitely at their discretion. We collect information in the following ways:
- When a visitor specifically provides us with information.
- Through analytics collected via WordPress.
- Any information a visitor has provided to WordPress and its associated services that appears when they interact with an article.
Information a Visitor Provides to Us
The amount and type of information Stories of the Unsolved collects upon it being provided depends on the context and how we use said information. Examples include:
- Use of Contact Form: Those who wish to contact us via our on-site contact form are required to provide their name and email address, along with the comment they wish to submit. In order to submit a comment, visitors must press the “Submit” button at the bottom of the contact form.
- Contact via Email: If one wishes to contact us via our email address, it should be known that we will be aware of one’s name, their email address and any other information they provide, including but not limited to email signatures and the content of the email. It should be noted that Stories of the Unsolved uses Google‘s Gmail service.
Stories of the Unsolved is hosted through WordPress and, as such, we have access to the information provided via the site’s analytics features. The following is tracked:
- Views: We are able to access how many views the site receives each day. The views are logged, as is the amount of visitors. Through this, we are also able to see which countries those viewing the site are from. However, we do not have access to exact location information, meaning cities, addresses or postal codes.
- Search Terms: We are able to view which search terms are used to direct people to the site, as well as terms used while visitors are utilizing our search bar.
- In-Article Link Clicks: Each of the articles on Stories of the Unsolved features links to outside websites, often when citing sources used during the research phase. WordPress offers us the opportunity to see which links are clicked by those visiting the site.
- Referrers: We are able to view how our visitors are referred to the site, including various search engines and specific social media websites.
Interactions via WordPress
In order for someone to “like” an article on Stories of the Unsolved or post a comment, they must first be signed in to their WordPress account. The type of information provided depends on the interaction:
- “Likes”: Those who “like” an article on the site give us access to their Gravatar account and the public information and images associated with it.
- Comments: When a user comments on an article, their comment is submitted for moderation before being posted to the site. We are allowed to approve or delete comments at our own discretion. When someone submits a comment, we are given access to certain information, which includes their WordPress site address, their email address, their IP address, and the time and date at which the comment was submitted.
How and Why We Use Information
There are numerous reasons as to why we collect the information of those who visit Stories of the Unsolved. They are listed below:
- To help develop new content and improve existing articles on the site. By recording user engagement and interaction, we are able to see what is working. We are also able to develop an idea of what future content or articles our visitors will enjoy.
- To learn more about who is visiting Stories of the Unsolved. This information allows us to better understand what our readers are interested in and how they consume the content we’re publishing.
- To communicate with those who frequent the site. Those who follow us or submit their email when subscribing to our content automatically receive word of when we publish a new article, whether it be via email or through their home feed.
We do not sell our visitors’ private and personal information. We only share information in the limited circumstances spelled out below and with appropriate safeguards on your privacy. It should be noted that since Stories of the Unsolved is run by a single person, there will be no sharing of information between employees, as there are none.
- Legal and Regulatory Requirements: We may disclose information about you in response to a subpoena, court order or other governmental requests.
- To Protect Rights, Property and Others: We may disclose information about our users when we believe in good faith that disclosure is necessary to protect the property rights of ourselves or others, third parties or the public. This includes any tips we may receive regarding cases. We discourage sending Stories of the Unsolved tips regarding the cases we cover, and we advocate contacting the relevant authorities directly. However, if we do receive an email we feel could be of use to an ongoing investigation, we will contact you directly to ask you share said information with the relevant authorities. If you wish, we will forward on the information on your behalf, but we cannot guarantee your name or any personal information provided to us will not be shared.
- With User Consent: We may share and disclose any information with the consent of our visitors themselves and at their direction. For example, we may share one’s information with third parties which they authorize us to do so.
Information Shared Publicly
Information that you choose to make public is disclosed publicly. This means that information, such as your public profiles, posts and other content you make available through commenting or interacting with Stories of the Unsolved is available to those who also visit the site.
Public information may also be indexed by search engines or used by third parties.
How Long We Keep Information
While the Editor of Stories of the Unsolved reserves the right to keep information at their discretion, they generally discard information when it’s no longer needed for the purposes for which it’s collected and used, as we are not legally required to keep it.
In terms of WordPress analytics, the information is kept for as long as WordPress itself decides to keep the information on its servers.
While no online service is completely secure, Automattic works hard to protect information about users against unauthorized access, use, alteration or destruction, and takes reasonable measures to do so. For example, Automattic monitors its services for potential vulnerabilities and attacks, and is frequently encouraging its users to enable advanced security settings, which Stories of the Unsolved has taken advantage of.
Linked External Content
Since WordPress places cookies on its users’ devices, Stories of the Unsolved will ask you if you’d like to opt in or out to use it each time you visit the site from a new browser or device.
As a visitor to Stories of the Unsolved, you have several choices available to you when it comes to your information:
- Limit Access to Information on Your Mobile Device: Your mobile device or smartphone should provide you with the ability to discontinue WordPress‘ ability to collect stored information or location information via Automattic‘s mobile apps.
- Set Your Browser to Reject Cookies: You can choose to set your browser to remove or reject browser cookies, with the drawback being that certain features of the website may not function properly without the aid of cookies.
If you are located in certain countries, including those under the scope of the European General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”), data protection laws give you rights with respect to your personal data, subject to exemptions provided by the law, including the rights to:
- Request access to your personal data.
- Request the correction or deletion of your personal data.
- Object to Stories of the Unsolved‘s use and processing of your personal data.
- Request that we limit our use and processing of your personal data.
- Request portability of your personal data.
How to Reach Us