Privacy Policy

Last updated 02/16/2021

1. Scope

1.1. We respect your privacy and want you to understand how we collect, use, and share data about you. This Privacy Policy covers our data collection practices and describes your rights to access, correct, or restrict our use of your personal data.

1.2. This Privacy Policy applies when you visit or use the Walnut website, mobile applications, APIs or related services (the “Services”).

1.3. By using the Services, you agree to the terms of this Privacy Policy. You shouldn’t use the Services if you don’t agree with this Privacy Policy or any other agreement that governs your use of the Services.

2. What Data We Collect and How We Share

2.1. Summary. We collect certain data from you directly, like information you enter yourself, your updates on orders, and data from third-party platforms you connect with Walnut. We also collect some data automatically, like information about your device and what parts of our Services you interact with or spend time using. Student’s profile information is kept private and only visible to the contacts of the student. Consultant’s profile information is visible to the public.

2.2. Student information

2.2.1. Basic profile. We collect the following information from students to enable using the chatting app to message other platform members.

  • Account information. Such as your email.
  • Contact information, account, profile information. Such as your first name, last name, email address, location, date of birth, profile picture, etc.

2.2.2. Student’s profile. When you Find The Best Match Consultant from a consultant, the consultant will need this information to decide whether to accept, add additional terms or decline your order.

  • Academic background. Your current and past enrollment schools with the start date and end date, your majors and/or minor, and GPA.
  • Standardized test results. The tests you have taken and the test results.
  • Activities. Your role, organization, start date and end date.

2.2.3. Preferences. The following information is optional and you can choose to enter to facilitate your communication with consultants.

  • Preferences. Your preferred schools, school categories, course and course categories.

2.2.4. Sharing of student’s information. The basic profile, student’s profile and preferences of students are hidden from the public and only visible to the consultants in your contacts.

2.2.5. Adding a contact. There are two ways to add a consultant as a contact, one is by clicking the message button and the other one is by clicking the order button on a package. A pop-up window will show up to allow you to confirm adding the consultant as your contact.

2.2.6. Other information. Other information is created when you interact with the platform, such as when you message with consultants, our customer service team, update an order status, share your service and application experience with us.

2.3. Consultant information

2.3.1. Basic profile. We collect the following information from consultants to allow you to publish your service packages to students.

  • Account information: such as your email.
  • Profile information: such as your first name, last name, email address, location, date of birth, profile picture, etc.

2.3.2. Consultant’s profile

  • Academic background: your current and past enrollment schools with the start date and end date, your majors and/or minor.
  • Work experience: your past and current companies, role, start date, end date.
  • Specialties: languages, specialized schools, specialized school categories, specialized course, specialized course categories.

2.3.3. Service packages: package name, target term, target degree, enrollment type, service item, fee, delivery time and delivery conditions.

2.3.4. Consultant’s optional profile. The following information is optional and however it’s recommended to enter as much as you can to make your profile stand out.

  • Certificates: certificate type, date received
  • Multimedia: introduction, video link, slide images
  • Q&A: questions and answers
  • 2.3.5. Sharing of consultant’s information. The information from consultants are made visible to the public in order for students to search for your package, know about you and order a package from you.

    2.3.6. Payout information. The following information is collected by our third-party payment processor in order to process your payout.

  • Payout information, such as bank account, phone number and stripe account
  • 2.3.7. Other information. Other information is created when you interact with the platform, such as when you message with students, our customer service team, update an order status, share your service and application experience with us.

    3. Order-Related Information

    3.1. Summary. Order acts as a contract between students and consultants. Consultants can interact with students in orders to communicate the progress of service. During the process, information is shared between the consultant and student in the order. Review, student’s profile and received accepted applications in the order are published on the profile of the consultant. Student’s identity information is still kept private from the public.

    3.2. Information before making the payment

    • After an order is requested from students. Consultant can review the order and update the order conditions, such as retainer ratio, target minimum school ranking, ranking categories, and additional conditions.
    • Students will then be able to review these additional conditions and make a payment.
    • The following information is collected by our third-party payment processor in order to process your payment for an order, including credit card information, zip code and CVS code.

    3.3. Information after making the payment

    • Order item status update
    • Order program status update
    • Order status update

    3.4. Review information. Students can leave a review for the consultant after completing an order. The following information will be posted on the consultant’s public profile page to assist future students for their selection.

    • Review: overall rating, knowledge rating, communication rating, and review content.
    • Students’ profile: academic background, standardized test results and accepted applications received in the order.
    • Student’s basic profile: to protect students’ privacy, in the review posted by the student, identity related information including profile picture and full name will be hidden from the public, only name initials are displayed. Students should be careful of personal identity information when writing a review content.

    4. How We Use Information We Collect

    4.1. Provide, improve, and develop the Walnut platform services

    • enable students to create orders and help consultants to decide if he or she can provide the services the students are looking for.
    • enable you to access the Walnut Platform and make and receive payments,
    • enable you to communicate with other Members,
    • perform analytics, debug and conduct research,
    • provide customer service,
    • send you messages, updates, security alerts, and account notifications.

    4.2. Create and maintain a trusted and safer environment

    • detect and prevent fraud, spam, abuse, security and safety incidents, and other harmful activities.
    • study and combat discrimination consistent,
    • verify or authenticate information provided by you,
    • comply with our legal obligations,
    • resolve disputes with our Members,
    • enforce our agreements with third parties,
    • comply with law, respond to legal requests, prevent harm and protect our rights,
    • enforce our Terms and other policies.

    4.3. Provide, personalize, measure, and improve our advertising and marketing

    • personalize, measure, and improve our advertising,

    5. Sharing & Disclosure to Legal Requests

    We may disclose your information to courts, law enforcement, governmental or public authorities, tax authorities, or authorized third parties, if and to the extent we are required or permitted to do so by law or where disclosure is reasonably necessary: (i) to comply with our legal obligations, (ii) to comply with a valid legal request or to respond to claims asserted against Walnut, (iii) to enforce and administer our agreements with Members, or (iv) to protect the rights, property or personal safety of Walnut, its employees, its Members, or members of the public.

    Where appropriate, we may notify Members about legal requests unless: (i) providing notice is prohibited by the legal process itself, by court order we receive, or by applicable law, or (ii) we believe that providing notice would be futile, ineffective, create a risk of injury or bodily harm to an individual or group, or create or increase a risk of fraud upon or harm to Walnut, our Members, or expose Walnut to a claim of obstruction of justice.

    For jurisdictions where Walnut facilitates the collection and remittance of Taxes where legally permissible according to applicable law, we may disclose Consultants’ and Students’ information about transactions, orderings, and Taxes to the applicable tax authority.

    6. Your Rights

    You can exercise any of the rights described in this section consistent with applicable law. Please note that we may ask you to verify your identity and request before taking further action on your request.

    6.1. Managing your information

    You can access and update some of your personal information through your Account settings. If you connect your Walnut Account to a third-party service, like Facebook or Google, you can change your settings and unlink from that service in your Account settings. You are responsible for keeping your personal information up to date.

    6.2. Data access and portability

    In some jurisdictions, applicable law may entitle you to request certain copies of your personal information or information about how we handle your personal information, request copies of personal information that you have provided to us in a structured, commonly used, and machine-readable format, and/or request that we transmit this information to another service provider (where technically feasible).

    6.3. Data erasure

    In certain jurisdictions, you can request that your personal information be deleted. Please note that if you request the erasure of your personal information:

    • We may retain your personal information as necessary for our legitimate business interests, such as prevention of money laundering, fraud detection and prevention, and enhancing safety.
    • We may retain and use your personal information to the extent necessary to comply with our legal obligations. For example, Walnut may keep information for tax, legal reporting and auditing obligations.
    • Information you have shared with others (e.g., Reviews) will continue to be publicly visible on Walnut, even after your Walnut Account is cancelled. However, attribution of such information to you will be removed. Some copies of your information (e.g., log records) will remain in our database, but are disassociated from personal identifiers.
    • Because we take measures to protect data from accidental or malicious loss and destruction, residual copies of your personal information may not be removed from our backup systems for a limited period of time.

    7. Security

    While no organization can guarantee perfect security, we are continuously implementing and updating administrative, technical, and physical security measures to help protect your information against unauthorized access, loss, destruction, or alteration.

    8. Changes to This Privacy Policy

    We reserve the right to modify this Privacy Policy at any time in accordance with applicable law. If we do so, we will post the revised Privacy Policy and update the “Last Updated” date at the top. In case of material changes, we will also provide you with notice of the modification by email at least thirty (30) days before the effective date. If you disagree with the revised Privacy Policy, you can cancel your Account. If you do not cancel your Account before the date the revised Privacy Policy becomes effective, your continued access to or use of the Walnut Platform will be subject to the revised Privacy Policy.

    9. How to Contact Us

    The best way to get in touch with us is to contact our customer service. We’d love to hear your questions, concerns, and feedback about our Services. Thanks for consulting and applying with us!