Keybase Terms of Service
Effective: September 12, 2023 (Updated September 12, 2023)
Please note that Keybase doesn’t provide warranties for the Services. This contract also limits our liability to you and contains an arbitration provision and a class action waiver.
Welcome to Keybase
Our Business Model and Approach to Privacy
Our mission is to help you protect your privacy and your data. Eventually, we plan to offer a paid service for corporate teams, but for now Keybase is free for everyone. You can read more about our business model and our approach to privacy here.
Note: When you publicly announce some of your account information, you can’t delete or alter it
We use a public blockchain to protect our users from misbehaving servers. Because of that, you can’t delete your publicly announced account information and account activity once you post it.
Our Services allow you to upload, submit, store, send or receive both encrypted and unencrypted content. You retain ownership of your rights in that content. In other words, if it’s yours, it stays yours.
We only have limited rights to use your content so that we can provide and improve our Services. In legal terms (sorry, but we have to say it this way): you give us rights to your content to the extent necessary to operate, promote, and improve our Services, and to develop new ones. We don’t have (and can’t) access your encrypted content and these rights you’re granting us doesn’t change that fact.
Content from Our Users
Much of the content available in the Services isn’t from Keybase. This content is the sole responsibility of the person or entity that makes it available. To the extent content is unencrypted, we may review content to determine whether it is illegal or violates our policies, and we may remove or refuse to display content that we reasonably believe violates our policies or the law. But that does not necessarily mean that we review content, so please don’t assume that we do.
Our Services are not directed to children, and you may not use our Services if you are under the age of 13. You must also be old enough to consent to the processing of your personal data in your country (in some countries we may allow your parent or guardian to do so on your behalf).
Your Promise to Us When You Use Our Services
You agree that you will not misuse the Services. For example, don’t interfere with our Services or try to access them using methods we don’t provide to you. You may use our Services only as permitted by law, including applicable export and re-export control laws and regulations. We may suspend or stop providing our Services to you if you do not comply with our terms or policies, including our Acceptable Use Policy, or if we are investigating suspected misconduct.
Our Intellectual Property Rights
You agree that your intellectual property rights in our Services are limited to your limited right to use our Services in accordance with these Terms and the licenses listed in our GitHub repositories. Using our Services does not give you ownership of any intellectual property rights in our Services or the content you access. Open source software is important to us. Some software used in our Services may be offered under an open source license that we will make available to you. There may be provisions in the open source license that expressly override some of these terms. The Services contains the open source packages listed here.
Your Keybase Account
To protect your Keybase account, keep your password confidential, install Keybase on more than one device, and write down your paper key and keep it somewhere safe. You are responsible for the activity that happens on or through your Keybase account. Don’t reuse your Keybase account password anywhere else.
We strongly encourage you to install the Keybase app on more than one device and to keep a hard copy of your paper key. If all of your devices provisioned with Keybase are lost or damaged and you do not have a hard copy of your paper key, your Keybase account and all of your content associated with the Services will be lost forever. All of Keybase is end-to-end encrypted (other than files that you store in your public folder and chat messages in public chats), which means that Keybase is unable to access any of your messages or content. You are responsible for keeping your Keybase account and your devices secure.
In connection with your use of the Services, we may send you service announcements, administrative messages, and other information. You can opt out of some of those communications.
We respond to notices of alleged copyright infringement and terminate accounts of repeat infringers according to the process set out in the U.S. Digital Millennium Copyright Act.
We provide information to help copyright holders manage their intellectual property online. If you think somebody is violating your copyrights and want to notify us, you can find information about submitting notices and Keybase’s policy about responding to notices.
Modifying and Terminating our Services
We are constantly changing and improving our Services. We may add or remove functionalities or features, and we may suspend or stop a Service altogether. Some of our software may update automatically on your devices.
You can stop using our Services at any time, although we’ll be sorry to see you go. Keybase may also stop providing Services to you, or add or create new limits to our Services at any time.
We believe that you own your data and preserving your access to such data is important. If we discontinue a Service, where reasonably possible, we will give you reasonable advance notice and a chance to get information out of that Service.
Updates to these Terms
We may modify these terms or any additional terms that apply to a Service to, for example, reflect changes to the law or changes to our Services. Changes will not apply retroactively and will become effective no sooner than fourteen days after they are posted. However, changes addressing new functions for a Service or changes made for legal reasons will be effective immediately. If you do not agree to the modified terms for a Service, you should discontinue your use of that Service.
You should look at the terms regularly. We’ll post notice of modifications to these terms on this page. We’ll post notice of modified additional terms in the applicable Service.
Business uses of our Services
If you are using our Services on behalf of a business, that business accepts these terms. It will hold harmless and indemnify Keybase and its affiliates, officers, agents, and employees from any claim, suit or action arising from or related to the use of the Services or violation of these terms, including any liability or expense arising from claims, losses, damages, suits, judgments, litigation costs and attorneys’ fees.
Joining a Keybase Team
When you join a team, the team administrators are able to read and delete any information you post into any chat channels in the team. They can read, edit and delete any information you put into the team KBFS folder (this is also true for any other members in the team, except "reader"s). They can also change your role in the team and subscribe you to chat channels within that team.
KEYBASE PROVIDES THE SERVICE “AS IS”, “WITH ALL FAULTS” AND “AS AVAILABLE”. TO THE MAXIMUM EXTENT PERMITTED BY APPLICABLE LAW, KEYBASE, ALONG WITH ITS SERVICE PROVIDERS AND REPRESENTATIVES, MAKE NO (AND SPECIFICALLY DISCLAIMS ALL) REPRESENTATIONS OR WARRANTIES OF ANY KIND, WHETHER EXPRESS, IMPLIED, STATUTORY OR OTHERWISE, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, ANY WARRANTY THAT THE SERVICE WILL BE UNINTERRUPTED, ERROR-FREE OR FREE OF HARMFUL COMPONENTS, THAT YOUR CONTENT WILL BE SECURE OR NOT OTHERWISE LOST OR DAMAGED, OR ANY IMPLIED WARRANTY OF MERCHANTABILITY, SATISFACTORY QUALITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, OR NON-INFRINGEMENT, AND ANY WARRANTY ARISING OUT OF ANY COURSE OF PERFORMANCE, COURSE OF DEALING OR USAGE OF TRADE. SOME JURISDICTIONS DO NOT ALLOW THE FOREGOING EXCLUSIONS. IN SUCH AN EVENT SUCH EXCLUSION WILL NOT APPLY SOLELY TO THE EXTENT PROHIBITED BY APPLICABLE LAW.
Limitation of Liability
TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW, IN NO EVENT WILL KEYBASE, ITS AFFILIATES, OFFICERS, EMPLOYEES, AGENTS, SUPPLIERS OR LICENSORS BE LIABLE FOR: ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, PUNITIVE, COVER OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES, OR DAMAGES FOR LOST PROFITS, REVENUE, GOODWILL, USE OR CONTENT, HOWEVER CAUSED, UNDER ANY THEORY OF LIABILITY, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, CONTRACT, TORT, WARRANTY, NEGLIGENCE OR OTHERWISE, EVEN IF KEYBASE HAS BEEN ADVISED AS TO THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. TO THE MAXIMUM EXTENT PERMITTED BY APPLICABLE LAW, THE AGGREGATE LIABILITY OF KEYBASE AND ITS AFFILIATES, OFFICERS, EMPLOYEES, AGENTS, SUPPLIERS OR LICENSORS, RELATING TO THE SERVICES WILL BE LIMITED TO FIFTY DOLLARS ($50.00). THE LIMITATIONS AND EXCLUSIONS ALSO APPLY IF THIS REMEDY DOES NOT FULLY COMPENSATE YOU FOR ANY LOSSES OR FAILS OF ITS ESSENTIAL PURPOSE. SOME JURISDICTIONS DO NOT ALLOW THE LIMITATION OF INCIDENTAL, CONSEQUENTIAL OR OTHER DAMAGES. IN SUCH AN EVENT THIS LIMITATION WILL NOT APPLY TO YOU TO THE EXTENT PROHIBITED BY LAW.
You acknowledge that the foregoing limitations are an essential element of the agreement between you and Keybase and that in the absence of such limitations the terms and conditions set forth in these Terms would be substantially different.
These Arbitration and Class Action Waiver sections includes an arbitration agreement and an agreement that all claims will be brought only in an individual capacity (and not as a class action or other representative proceeding). Please read them carefully. You may opt out of the arbitration agreement by following the opt out procedure described below.
You agree that in the event of any dispute between you and Keybase, you will first contact Keybase and make a good faith sustained effort to resolve the dispute before resorting to more formal means of resolution, including without limitation any court action.
After the informal dispute resolution process any remaining dispute, controversy, or claim (collectively, “Claim”) relating in any way to your use of Keybase’s services and/or products, including the Service, or relating in any way to the communications between you and Keybase or any other user of the Service, will be finally resolved by binding arbitration. This mandatory arbitration agreement applies equally to you and Keybase. However, this arbitration agreement does not (a) govern any Claim by Keybase for infringement of its intellectual property or access to the Service that is unauthorized or exceeds authorization granted in these Terms or (b) bar you from making use of applicable small claims court procedures in appropriate cases. If you are an individual you may opt out of this arbitration agreement within thirty (30) days of the first date you access or use this Service by following the procedure described below.
Arbitration is more informal than a lawsuit in court. There is no judge or jury in arbitration. Instead, the dispute is resolve by a neutral arbitrator. Court review of an arbitration award is limited. Except to the extent the parties agree otherwise, arbitrators can award the same damages and relief that a court can award. You agree that the U.S. Federal Arbitration Act governs the interpretation and enforcement of this provision, and that you and Keybase are each waiving the right to a trial by jury or to participate in a class action. This arbitration provision will survive any termination of these Terms.
If you wish to begin an arbitration proceeding, after following the informal dispute resolution procedure, you must send a letter requesting arbitration and describing your claim to Keybase, Inc., Attn: President, 85 Broad St., 28th Floor - NY, NY 10004. The arbitration will be administered by the American Arbitration Association (AAA) under its rules including, if you are an individual, the AAA's Supplementary Procedures for Consumer-Related Disputes. If you are not an individual or have used the Services on behalf of an entity, the AAA's Supplementary Procedures for Consumer-Related Disputes will not be used. The AAA's rules are available at www.adr.org or by calling 1-800-778-7879.
The number of arbitrators will be one. You may choose to have the arbitration conducted by telephone, based on written submissions, or in person in the county where you live or at another mutually agreed location. The arbitration will be conducted in the English language and New York law will apply. Judgment on the award rendered by the arbitrator may be entered in any court having jurisdiction thereof.
Payment of all filing, administration and arbitrator fees will be governed by the AAA's rules. If you are an individual and have not accessed or used the Service on behalf of an entity, we will reimburse those fees for claims totaling less than $10,000, unless the arbitrator determines the claims are frivolous, and we will not seek attorneys’ fees and costs in arbitration unless the arbitrator determines the claims are frivolous.
The arbitrator, and not any federal, state, or local court, will have exclusive authority to resolve any dispute relating to the interpretation, applicability, unconscionability, arbitrability, enforceability, or formation of this arbitration agreement, including any claim that all or any part of this arbitration agreement is void or voidable. However, the preceding sentence will not apply to the “Class Action Waiver” section below.
If you do not want to arbitrate disputes with Keybase and you are an individual, you may opt out of this arbitration agreement by sending an email to email@example.com within thirty (30) days of the first date you access or use the Service.
Class Action Waiver
Any Claim must be brought in the respective party’s individual capacity, and not as a plaintiff or class member in any purported class, collective, representative, multiple plaintiff, or similar proceeding (“Class Action”). The parties expressly waive any ability to maintain any Class Action in any forum. If the Claim is subject to arbitration, the arbitrator will not have authority to combine or aggregate similar claims or conduct any Class Action nor make an award to any person or entity not a party to the arbitration. Any claim that all or part of this Class Action Waiver is unenforceable, unconscionable, void, or voidable may be determined only by a court of competent jurisdiction and not by an arbitrator. The parties understand that any right to litigate in court, to have a judge or jury decide their case, or to be a party to a class or representative action, is waived, and that any claims must be decided individually, through arbitration.
If this class action waiver is found to be unenforceable, then the entirety of the Arbitration Agreement, if otherwise effective, will be null and void. The arbitrator may award declaratory or injunctive relief only in favor of the individual party seeking relief and only to the extent necessary to provide relief warranted by that party's individual claim. If for any reason a claim proceeds in court rather than in arbitration, you and Keybase each waive any right to a jury trial and each submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the federal courts located in New York, New York.
Miscellaneous Legal Terms
When we refer to “Keybase” and “we” or “us” we mean Keybase, Inc., a Delaware corporation.
If we need to provide notice to you, we will do so via your Keybase account or the email address we have on file for you.
If a court holds that we cannot enforce a part of these Terms as written, you and we will replace those terms with similar terms to the extent enforceable under the relevant law, but the rest of these Terms will remain in effect. This is the entire contract between you and us regarding the Service. It supersedes any prior contract or oral or written statements regarding your use of the Service.
You may not assign these Terms or transfer any rights to use the Service. We may assign our rights to any of its affiliates or subsidiaries, or to any successor in interest of any business associated with the Services.
Keybase and you are not legal partners or agents. These Terms are solely for your and our benefit. It is not for the benefit of any other person, except for permitted successors.
You must bring any claim related to these Terms or the Service within one year of the date you could first bring the claim, unless your local law requires a longer time to file claims. If it isn’t filed in time, the claim is permanently barred.
The Terms are governed by the laws of the State of New York without regard to conflict of laws rules.
The failure of you or Keybase to insist upon or enforce strict performance of any of the provisions of these Terms or to exercise any rights or remedies under these Terms will not be construed as a waiver or relinquishment to any extent of your right or Keybase’s right to assert or rely upon any such provision, right or remedy in that or any other instance; rather, the same will remain in full force and effect.
Keybase SMS Terms of Service
By adding your phone number to your Keybase profile, you opt in to receiving text messages from Keybase to confirm your phone number. You will also receive text messages from Keybase when you try to reset your account.
You can cancel the SMS service at any time. Just text "STOP" to the sending number. After you send the SMS message "STOP" to us, we will send you an SMS message to confirm that you have been unsubscribed. After this, you will no longer receive SMS messages from us. If you want to be able to receive messages from us again, text "START" to the sending number.
If you are experiencing issues with the messaging program you can reply with the keyword HELP for more assistance, or you can get help directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Carriers are not liable for delayed or undelivered messages.
As always, message and data rates may apply for any messages sent to you from us and to us from you. You will receive a message when you first add your phone number. You will receive text messages when you try to reset your account. If you have any questions about your text plan or data plan, it is best to contact your wireless provider.