This policy applies to all users of the Office of Financial Research’s (OFR) website, FinancialResearch.gov unless a separate privacy notice is prominently displayed.
- Our privacy practices, including your rights under the Privacy Act
- Cookies, web analysis tools, and other third-party services
- External links, social media, and other 3rd party sites
- Security features, notice of and consent to monitoring, and service provider controls
Our Privacy Practices
Information Provided Voluntarily
We collect information that directly identifies you only with your explicit consent. For example, you can provide us with your contact information — e-mail address and name — to sign up for e-mail alerts or submit inquiries to us. If you provide it to us, we only use it for the primary purpose of communicating with you as requested. You can choose to unsubscribe from such communications at any point or access, amend, and update this information.
Information Collected And Stored Automatically
We also collect certain information about you from your visit to our website. This information is collected automatically to secure the site and improve its usability. This collection includes information about you or your use of FinancialResearch.gov that is not directly identifying. For example, we may know what website you came from to reach FinancialResearch.gov, or which specific pages you visited while here, and for how long, but we don’t know who you are.
Each time you visit FinancialResearch.gov, we automatically collect and store only the following information:
- Internet domain and Internet Protocol (IP) address;
- Geographic region and internet service provider (ISP) associated with an IP address;
- Type of browser used to access FinancialResearch.gov;
- Date and time of access and pages visited; and
- The IP address of that website or search term used to find FinancialResearch.gov if you linked to the website from another website.
We use the information to help us make FinancialResearch.gov more useful to visitors, including understanding what information is of most and least interest, ensuring that the website can interface with the types of technology our visitors use, and alerting us to any site performance problems or unauthorized attempts to upload or change information, or otherwise damage the website.
Except for certain authorized website monitoring activities and law enforcement investigations, no attempts are made to use this information to identify specific individual users or their usage habits on this site. You can read more about our monitoring of this site for security purposes in the Security section.
Your Rights Under The Privacy Act
The OFR follows the requirements of the Privacy Act of 1974 (5 U.S.C 552(a), as amended). The Privacy Act provides comprehensive protections for your information, including how information is collected, used, disclosed, stored, and discarded.
When the Privacy Act applies, we may share your information in the ways outlined in the Routine Uses section of the applicable System of Records Notice (SORN); as required by law; or with your consent. Likewise, you may have additional rights to request access to, or amendment of, your information using the procedures outlined in the applicable SORN. For more information on the Privacy Act visit Publications.usa.gov.
In general, your interactions with us through FinancialResearch.gov are not subject to the Privacy Act. When we collect and maintain information through FinancialResearch.gov that is subject to the Privacy Act, we will provide explicit notice in the form of a Privacy Act Statement at the point of collection.
Cookies, Web Analysis Tools, And Third-Party Services
Like many websites, the OFR website uses Web technologies that improve the user experience or analyze how visitors are using FinancialResearch.gov. These tools may include cookies, Web analysis tools, third-party services, and other Web-based technologies. Although these types of tools help improve the FinancialResearch.gov experience, we understand that you may have concerns about their impact on your privacy. The types of tools and services we use are explained below.
Cookies are small text files placed on your computer by a website so that it can either maintain your online session (called “session cookies”) as you browse pages, or so the site can remember you (called “persistent cookies”) when you show up again later. None of these cookies store any directly identifying information. We use persistent cookies to enhance your experience on this website by reducing redundant information input or allowing you to move back and forth between pages on this website.
Most Internet browsers automatically accept persistent cookies. However, if you don’t want to accept cookies, you can change your browser’s options to not accept them or to prompt you before accepting them. Here’s how to disable cookies. Please note that if you choose to disable all cookies, certain features of this website may not work as well or may be unavailable to you.
Web Analysis Tools
This website uses Google Analytics to generate summary demographic data about website visitors and visits to FinancialResearch.gov, such as gender, age range, and areas of interest for adults over the age of 18. Please refer to the following policies on Google’s website for more information or to prevent your data from being collected and used by Google Analytics:
- Cookies & Google Analytics on Websites
- Google Analytics Opt-out Browser Add-on
Third-party services are Web-based technologies that are not exclusively operated or controlled by a government entity, or that involve significant participation of a nongovernment entity. These services may be separate websites or may be applications embedded within FinancialResearch.gov.
The OFR uses GovDelivery to handle its e-mail subscription management and deliver e-mail updates about the OFR to those who elect to receive them. Only e-mail addresses will be collected and maintained from users who sign up for OFR e-mail alerts through FinancialResearch.gov. Your information will only be used for the purpose of fulfilling your request and access will be limited to personnel responsible for managing those communications. Users may update their subscription preferences at any time. Please see http://www.govdelivery.com/privacy and https://subscriberhelp.govdelivery.com for more information.
The OFR has embedded videos into FinancialResearch.gov from outside websites, such as YouTube and C-SPAN. When clicking on such a video, you may be redirected to these sites to view the videos. The OFR does not receive any information about your use of these websites or video-delivery services. Please see the websites’ privacy policies for more information.
The OFR has included social share links on its page to allow you to like, tweet, or otherwise share OFR stories and updates through your social networks. When clicking these links, you will be redirected to the site you have chosen to login and confirm your choice to social share. The OFR does not receive any information about your use of any of these sites. When you leave FinancialResearch.gov, you are subject to the privacy, security, and other policies of the owners/sponsors of the outside website. Please see the following privacy policies for more information:
Finally, the OFR maintains an official presence on Twitter for outreach and engagement purposes only. The OFR does not collect information about you or your use of Twitter if you choose to engage with the OFR, for example, “tweeting at” or “following” the OFR, or re-tweeting materials posted by the OFR on its official Twitter account. Although the OFR has access to PII presented on the accounts of users who have chosen to “follow” the OFR on Twitter, it does not ingest, maintain, or share that information. By using Twitter and similar social media sites, you may be providing nongovernment third parties access to PII. When engaging OFR through Twitter, your use of Twitter is subject to the privacy, security, and other policies of Twitter. You are encouraged to familiarize yourself with each of these policies before engaging. The OFR will make comparable information and services available through its website, FinancialResearch.gov, and individuals are not required to have or create a Twitter account to access comparable information and services. The Treasury Department has published a Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA), which covers OFR’s use of social media; you can read it here.
Data Derived From Cookies And Other Web Analysis Tools
We are careful to safeguard any data derived from cookies, Web analysis tools, or third-party services. No data derived from session cookies are retained. Data derived from other cookies, Web analysis tools, and third-party services are retained within the OFR’s secure network or a secure network of our service provider.
External Links, Social Media, And Other 3rd Party Sites
FinancialResearch.gov includes links to federal and nonfederal external sites. Nonfederal websites do not necessarily operate under the same laws, regulations, and policies as federal websites. If you click a link to an outside website, such as Facebook, Twitter, or other external sites, including other federal websites, such as NSF.gov or Grants.gov, you will leave FinancialResearch.gov and are subject to the privacy and security policies of the owners/sponsors of the outside website. When possible, before being redirected, the OFR will provide notice of the redirect to nonfederal websites.
With the exception of those outlined in this policy, the OFR does not use, maintain, or share any of your information made available through external links, social media, or other third-party sites.
Website Security And Consent To Monitoring
For website security purposes and to ensure that this service remains available to all users, the OFR monitors use of FinancialResearch.gov. We employ software that monitors network traffic to identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information, or otherwise cause damage to the website. By using FinancialResearch.gov you expressly consent to such monitoring. If our monitoring reveals evidence of possible abuse or criminal activity, we may provide such evidence to appropriate law enforcement officials. Unauthorized attempts to upload information or change information on this website, or unauthorized modification or misuse of information stored in this system is strictly prohibited and will be investigated and may result in criminal prosecution.
Service Providers And Contractors
The OFR may enter into relationships with service providers and other contractors to provide certain services, such as this website. Service providers that collect, process, or otherwise have access to OFR information are also subject to privacy and security reviews.