Privacy and Security

Privacy - Billing Information

When you purchase software directly from us, your order information will be processed by our third-party vendor, eSellerate (which is in turn owned by DigitalRiver - We do not store any of your purchasing information on our web server, and eSellerate does not store your payment details once the transaction has completed. They are in full compliance with privacy laws in the U.S. in that regard. What will be stored is your billing address, e-mail and the user name that you selected when filling out the purchase form. This is used for verification purposes. Should you lose your key in the future, we will verify this information with you to ensure you are the rightful owner.

Scrivener "Phones Home", Why?

If you have set Scrivener to check for updates in the General preference pane, then when it is scheduled to do so, it will contact on port 80, to retrieve a file which contains information on the latest version of Scrivener. This is what provides you with the notification of an update, and its release notes. No information is sent to our web server during this process.

For the direct-sale version of our software, an initial activation request will be made over the Internet and is necessary (though it can be bypassed by using another computer or device to make the connection) to unlock the software. Additionally, a periodic activation check will be performed, and sent to the eSellerate servers. This operation sends only your serial number, no personal data will be sent to the server.


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Note On Java Usage on Mac OS X

The security of Java has recently been called into question after the news of several breaches were made public. In most cases home computer usage does not require Java. There are two primary components of Java, only one of which has the potential to expose your computer to risks.

The Java system itself is what allows software written for Java to run on your computer, and this is as safe as any other software. The other component is the "online" aspect of Java - a plug-in that sits in your web browser, and allows websites to execute Java code when you visit the website. This is designed to be safe, but in the past has been attacked.

Fortunately it is easy to disable the plug-in component in your browser. You should consult your browser documentation for instructions on how to do so. Once this has been done, you are effectively safe. In this way you can protect your computer from hacks, without having to compromise your usage of Java software entirely.

Scrivener optionally uses Java for improved conversion from RTF to Microsoft's DOC and DOCX formats, as well as the Open Document Format (ODT). If you produce documents to these formats, it is highly recommended you install Java and use the improved converters. It is important to note, however, that in most cases the need for these formats are scarce. Word,, and most other word processors open RTF files just as well as, or even better than, .doc/x and .odt files. Java is not required to produce an RTF document. So if you are concerned about security but still need a genuine .doc/x or .odt file, you will need to compile to RTF and then use another program to do the final conversion, for the best results.