Privacy Notice

Talking Stick Privacy Notice

Last updated: March 2024

1. Purpose of this privacy notice

This Privacy Notice pertains to the collection, use and disclosure of your Personal Information, as defined below, in the custody and control of TryCycle Data Systems Inc. (“TryCycle”/“we”/“us”/“our”) in connection with your use of the Talking Stick mobile application (“Talking Stick”, “App”, or “Web App”).

Talking Stick is an anonymous peer support platform for Indigenous Canadians and as such, we have designed the App to avoid any collection of Personal Information about our users and you don’t have to set up an account to use the App. While we always make efforts to avoid identifying a specific user and we automatically delete chat history, this Privacy Notice applies in the rare cases in which we may collect information that qualifies as Personal Information (such as information about your device), as discussed below.

Talking Stick also offers an emergency response and support system. By signing up to the First Alerts service from the Talking Stick App, you will receive notifications on your phone, but we will never ask you to share your phone number, email address, or identity.

By using the Talking Stick App, you consent to the collection, use and disclosure of your Personal Information in accordance with this notice. We strongly recommend that you read this notice carefully and retain it for future reference. This notice may change from time to time (see Section 6 “Changes to this Privacy Notice” below) so please check this notice periodically for updates. Your continued use of our App after we make changes to this notice indicates that you accept and consent to those changes. We will notify you in advance of any material changes to this notice and obtain your consent to any new ways that we collect, use and disclose your Personal Information.

The application of this notice is subject to applicable laws, including legislation, regulations and the orders or lawful requests of any courts or legal authorities.

2. Information we collect about you, how we collect it and how we use it

For the purposes of this notice, “Personal Information” includes any information about an identifiable individual, or an individual whose identity may be inferred or determined from such information, that can be used on its own or with other information to identify a single person, but does not include names, titles or other information that is publicly available, such as business contact information or information found in a telephone directory.

We will only collect information that may qualify as Personal Information in the following circumstances:

Technical information about your device. We collect technical information about your device, including information about your device type, device identifier, operating system, language, duration of use, number of notification messages sent or received, and times and dates at which our App was accessed and utilized. While we make efforts not to associate device information with any identifiable user, such information may in certain cases qualify as Personal Information under applicable privacy laws.

We use technical information about your device for the following purposes:

  • To provide our App and deliver our services to our users;
  • To understand how users access and utilize features and services on our App;
  • To troubleshoot, enhance, improve and optimize our products and services;
  • To send essential push notifications required to provide the features and services relevant to the Talking Stick system;
  • To deliver any First Alerts notifications that you have signed up to;
  • Recognize when you return to our App;
  • In case of violation of our rules relating to harassment and abuse, we may also use this information to block a device from accessing our App;
  • To comply with our legal obligations.

Chat history. As disclosed in the App, we reserve the right to save chat history in cases of harassment, abuse, or if personal safety is considered at risk. We may therefore collect any Personal Information you have inputted in the chat. We may use this information to protect the safety or security of individuals and to enforce our Terms and Conditions.

Non-confidential information. Unless otherwise explicitly stated herein or in our Terms & Conditions, any non-personal information or material, including but not limited to any submissions or posts in public areas of a Website or App (“User Submissions”) or suggestions, reviews, comments or feedback sent to TryCycle related to any aspect of a Website or App (“Feedback”), will be deemed not to be confidential.

As you navigate through and interact with our Website and Apps, we may use automated technologies, such as “cookies”, small files placed on your devices, to collect certain information about you, your device, and how you interact with our Website and Apps. You can learn more about how we use cookies by consulting our Cookies Notice.

3. When and to whom we disclose your Personal Information

TryCycle will never sell your Personal Information.

To the extent we collect Personal Information, we will only disclose it in exceptional cases, namely:

  • As required or as authorized by law or by order or requirement of a court, administrative agency or other governmental tribunal;
  • As required to enforce or apply our Terms and Conditions and other agreements;
  • Where we believe, upon reasonable grounds, that it is necessary because of an emergency that threatens the life, health or security of an individual; or
  • Where it is necessary to permit us to pursue available remedies or limit any damages that we may sustain.

TryCycle uses third-party service providers, such as Microsoft, PostHog and Raygun to host servers in Canada and the United States and to track and prevent errors in our software. These third-party service providers may have access to Personal Information as an incidental result of the services provided by such third parties to TryCycle, but the access of such third parties to such information is strictly controlled by our agreements with these service providers.

4. How we protect your Personal Information

To the extent we collect Personal Information, keeping it safe and secure is very important to us. While we cannot guarantee complete protection of your Personal Information, we follow commercially reasonable practices to protect Personal Information collected from you against accidental loss and unauthorized access, use, alteration, disclosure and destruction.

We store all Personal Information with Microsoft Azure at a data centre in Canada. Microsoft Azure is responsible for the hosting and security of all servers, databases and applications in a secure cloud and are certified as compliant with ISO Standard 27018 Code of Practice for personal identifiable information (PII) protection in public clouds acting as PII processors. In addition to the independent certification process under ISO27018, the ISO Standard also includes the right to audit Microsoft for compliance.

Because the transmission of information via the Internet is not completely secure, any transmission of Personal Information is at your own risk. Although we maintain security measures to maintain the integrity of the data in our care, including the encryption of all Personal Information, while in transit or at rest, we are not responsible for circumvention of any of our privacy settings or security measures. Your Personal Information may be transmitted over various networks and may be subject to changes to confirm and adapt to technical requirements of connected networks or devices.

Access to private, sensitive and confidential information, including your Personal Information, is restricted to authorized TryCycle employees who are required to abide by our privacy standards. Our employees are bound by a confidentiality agreement, which strictly prohibits access to or disclosure of your information without authorization. Our employees are subject to appropriate disciplinary measures, including dismissal, if they fail to abide by our confidentiality agreement or privacy standards.

Our App may contain links or references to other websites and services owned or operated by third parties. These third-party platforms and websites are not governed by this notice. This notice does not extend to the collection of information by third parties, and we are not responsible for the privacy practices, policies or actions of third parties. When visiting third party websites or platforms, you do so at your own risk, and you assume all responsibility associated with the same. We encourage you to review the privacy policies and terms and conditions of each website and platform visited prior to using them or disclosing information to third parties.

5. Retention of your Personal Information

To the extent we collect Personal Information, we will only retain it for as long as is necessary to fulfill the purposes for which we collected it, including for the purposes of satisfying any legal, accounting or reporting requirements or to protect us from liability in the event of a dispute.

All text messages sent through Talking Stick will be automatically deleted upon the termination of the chat session during which said text messages were sent, except where we need to retain the chat in cases where personal safety is considered at risk.

6. Changes to this Privacy Notice

We reserve the right to modify this notice at any time. The notice posted on our App shall be deemed to be the notice in effect. A current notice can also be obtained by contacting us. If we make any material changes to this notice regarding how we treat your Personal Information, we will notify you through a notice on our App and will obtain your express consent as required under applicable privacy laws. We also include the date this notice was last revised at the top of the notice.

7. Governing law

This notice shall, in all respects, be governed by and interpreted, construed and enforced in accordance with applicable provincial and federal laws of Canada.

For users in First Nations Communities, TryCycle works with community leaders to ensure compliance with the First Nations Principles of ownership, control, access and possession (OCAP) of First Nations data.

8. Correcting or updating information and withdrawing consent

You have the right to request access to and to correct any Personal Information we hold about you. You may contact us if you would like to review, verify, correct or withdraw consent to the use of your Personal Information. We may request certain Personal Information for the purposes of verifying the identity of the individual seeking access to their Personal Information records.

We may not accommodate a request to view or change information if we believe that:

  • The identity of the person requesting access cannot be confirmed;
  • The information is not readily retrievable, and the burden or cost of providing it would be disproportionate to the nature or value of the information;
  • The requested information does not exist, is not held or cannot be found;
  • Disclosure of the information would compromise the confidentiality of another individual or threaten the safety of another person; and/or
  • Non-disclosure of the information is required or permitted by law.

Where a request for access to information is made, to protect vulnerable populations, TryCycle reserves the right to verify communications before taking action. Where a request for access or alteration of Personal Information is declined, the individual making the request will be provided with the reason(s) for declining the request, subject to any legal or regulatory restrictions.

9. Contacting us

TryCycle has appointed a designated privacy contact who acts as Chief Privacy Officer (“CPO”) responsible for information system monitoring and information security notice and procedure management by:

  • Undertaking privacy impact assessment and threat and risk assessments on a regular basis; and
  • Adopting policies and procedures based on privacy impact assessment and threat and risk assessments to mitigate all identified risks, updated as necessary.

If you have questions about this notice or would like to submit a request or complaint, you may contact our CPO, Geoff Schaadt, by e-mail at or by regular mail using the details provided below:

TryCycle Data Systems Inc
1525 Carling Ave
Suite 408
Ottawa, ON K1Z 8R9