APRO’s Code of Ethics was created alongside the association in 1980, written by APRO’s first members to establish a set of guidelines consistent with what they felt should be ingrained in the industry’s values, priorities, and ethical standards.
Today, this 14-point Code of Ethics endures as the defining guidance that APRO members agree upon in order to maintain a healthy business environment for the rent-to-own industry. As our Code of Ethics continues to be not just relevant but essential to our association and our membership four decades later, we offer this series of newsletter articles to recap and reconfirm each of these ethical standards with you.
Members Shall Respect the Privacy of Their Customers.
Personal information can be more easily collected in today’s internet-centric world than ever before – basic personal data is frequently volunteered by a rent-to-own customer and gathered directly from a company website.
Even more sophisticated data – such as a customer’s page views and shopping tendencies – can be collected and used without the customer’s knowledge or consent. From a business marketing perspective, this is an invaluable tool that is broadly used in many industries; businesses use this information to customize products or services according to the customer’s proclivities – and many customers enjoy this more “personal” experience as they browse online.
The fourth article of APRO’s Code of Ethics requires all members to respect the privacy of their customers, i.e., be careful of how far their data collection goes to ensure they don’t violate a customer’s rights.
The main federal consumer protection law used to apply to most privacy violations is the Federal Trade Commission Act (15 U.S.C. §§41-58) (FTC Act), and state privacy laws vary widely – so if you ever question whether a policy you’re implementing may be in violation of federal or state privacy laws, please contact APRO immediately for consultation.