Privacy Policy

Protecting your privacy is very important to us. We do not collect any personally identifiable information (PII) about you during your visit to the CIT website, unless you choose to provide it to us. We do, however, collect some data about your visit to our website to help us better understand how the public uses the site and how to make it more helpful.

We collect information from visitors who read, browse and/or download information from our website. CIT never collects information for commercial marketing or any purpose unrelated to the CIT mission and goals.

When visitors send email messages or send information via the “Contact Us” page containing personal information, CIT staff responds to the messages and files them. Only designated staff members requiring access to the emails to respond may view or answer them.

 

Types of Information the CIT Website Collects

When you browse through any website, certain information about your visit can be collected. We automatically collect and temporarily store the following information about your visit:

  • Domain from which you access the Internet
  • IP address (an IP address is a number that is automatically assigned to a computer when surfing the web)
  • Operating system and information about the browser you used when visiting the site
  • Date and time of your visit
  • Pages you visited or items downloaded
  • Address of the website that connected you to a CIT website (such as google.com or bing.com)
  • Demographic and interest data

We use this information to measure the number of visitors to our website and to help make our site more useful to visitors. This information cannot be used to identify you as an individual.

 

How the CIT Website Collects Information

The cit.nih.gov site uses Google Analytics to collect the information in the bulleted list in the “Types of Information the CIT Website Collects” section above. Google Analytics collects information automatically and continuously; no PII is collected. The CIT staff conducts analyses and reports on the aggregated data from Google Analytics. The reports are only available to cit.nih.gov managers, members of the cit.nih.gov communications and web teams and other designated staff who require this information to perform their duties.

Additionally, cit.nih.gov participates in the Digital Analytics Program (DAP), in which Google Analytics data is collected from websites across the U.S. Government. For more information on DAP, please visit the DigitalGov website.

CIT retains the data from Google Analytics and its Content Management System (CMS) as long as needed to support the mission of the cit.nih.gov website.

 

How the CIT Website Uses Cookies

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Memo M-10-22, Guidance for Online Use of Web Measurement and Customization Technologies allows Federal agencies to use session and persistent cookies.

When you visit any website, its server may generate a piece of text known as a "cookie" to place on your computer. The cookie allows the server to "remember" specific information about your visit while you are connected.

The cookie makes it easier for you to use the dynamic features of webpages. Cookies from CIT webpages only collect information about your browser’s visit to the site; they do not collect personal information about you.

There are two types of cookies, single session (temporary) and multi-session (persistent). Session cookies last only as long as your web browser is open. Once you close your browser, the cookie disappears. Persistent cookies are stored on your computer for longer periods.

Session Cookies: We use session cookies for technical purposes such as to enable better navigation through our site. These cookies let our server know that you are continuing a visit to our site. The OMB Memo 10-22 Guidance defines our use of session cookies as “Usage Tier 1—Single Session.” The policy states: “This tier encompasses any use of single session web measurement and customization technologies.”

 

How to Opt Out of or Disable Cookies

If you do not wish to have session or persistent cookies placed on your computer, you can disable them using your web browser. If you opt out of cookies, you will still have access to all information and resources at cit.nih.gov. Instructions for disabling or opting out of cookies in the most popular browsers are located at USA.gov's Opt-Out Instructions.  Please note that by following the instructions to opt-out of cookies, you will disable cookies from all sources, not just those from cit.nih.gov.

 

How Personally Identifiable Information is Protected

You do not have to give us personal information to visit the CIT websites. However, if you choose to receive alerts or e-newsletters, we collect your email address to complete the subscription process.

If you choose to provide us with PII, we will maintain the information you provide only as long as needed to respond to your question or to fulfill the stated purpose of the communication. If we store your personal information in a record system designed to retrieve information about you by personal identifier (name, personal email address, home mailing address, personal or mobile phone number, etc.), so that we may contact you, we will safeguard the information you provide to us in accordance with the Privacy Act of 1974, as amended (5 U.S.C. Section 552a).

 

Third-Party Websites and Applications, including Social Media Sites

As part of the OMB Memo M-10-06, Open Government Directive, CIT uses a variety of new technologies and social media options to communicate and interact with citizens. These sites and applications include popular social networking and media sites, open-source software communities and more. Third-party websites and applications (TPWAs) are web-based technologies that are not exclusively operated or controlled by NIH or CIT such as applications not hosted on a .gov domain or those that are embedded on CIT webpages. Users of TPWAs often share information with the general public, user community and/or the third-party operating the website. These actors may use this information in a variety of ways. TPWAs could cause PII to become available or accessible to CIT and the public, regardless of whether the information is explicitly solicited or collected by CIT.

The following list includes some of the TPWAs CIT uses and their purpose. CIT sometimes collects and uses PII made available through third-party websites. However, we do not share PII made available through third-party websites. Your activity on the third-party websites we use is governed by the security and privacy policy of those sites, which we have linked below. You should review the third-party privacy policies before using the sites and ensure that you understand how your information may be used. If you have an account with a third-party website, and choose to follow, like, friend or comment, certain PII associated with your account may be made available to CIT based on the privacy policy of the third-party website and your privacy settings within that third-party website. Therefore, you should also adjust privacy settings on your account to match your preferences.

For any CIT TPWA that collects PII, the list below also includes details on the information CIT collects and how we will protect your private information.

AddThis:  CIT uses the AddThis service to allow visitors to bookmark and share cit.nih.gov website content on a variety of social media sites. Visitors who use the AddThis service to share content do not need to register or provide any personal information. The AddThis service providers collect non-personal data, including the aggregate and summary statistics on browsers and usage patterns. AddThis also uses non-personal data to manage the service efficiently and diagnose server problems. Although AddThis offers some analytics and usage data to CIT, these reports do not include any PII. The reports are password-protected and only available to cit.nih.gov managers, members of the cit.nih.gov communications and web teams and other designated staff requiring this information to perform their duties. You can view the AddThis privacy policy at http://www.addthis.com/privacy.

Parts of CIT use Twitter to send short messages known as “tweets” to share information about CIT with visitors and respond to comments and inquiries sent via Twitter to CIT. While visitors may read the CIT Twitter feeds without subscribing to them, visitors who want to subscribe to (or follow) CIT Twitter feeds must create a Twitter account at www.twitter.com. To create an account, you must provide some personal information, such as your name, user name, password and email address. Visitors have the option to provide additional personal information including a short biography, location, or a picture. Most information you provide for a Twitter account is available to the public, but you can modify how much of your information is visible by changing your Twitter privacy settings. CIT staff members never take possession of the personal information belonging to you as a Twitter follower. However, as a practice, comment moderator policy requires the removal from the CIT Twitter pages of any comments that contain spam or are improper, inflammatory or offensive. The information is then saved on a password-protected shared drive accessible to CIT managers, system owners, communications staff, web teams and other designated staff who require this information to perform their duties. The Twitter privacy policy is available at http://twitter.com/privacy.

Widgets: CIT offers a variety of widgets that deliver small versions of selected cit.nih.gov site content to other online locations outside of the site where the content originated. Widgets are portable pieces of code. They deliver information and links to any site or application where the widget is installed. You can install the widgets on any webpage without requiring additional coding or configuration. If you choose to install cit.nih.gov widgets, they will not collect any type of PII. The WidgetBox.com privacy policy is available at http://www.widgetbox.com/info/legal/privacy-policy. Note: This is the privacy policy for the website www.widgetbox.com (the widget program creator), and not the widgets themselves.

YouTube: CIT posts videos on YouTube to make them available to all cit.nih.gov visitors. You do not need to register with either YouTube or Google (the owner of YouTube) to watch CIT videos. When visitors watch videos, YouTube may record non-PII about its site usage, such as channels used, videos watched and data transfer details to improve its services. If you log on to the YouTube site before watching CIT videos, YouTube may associate information about your site use with your YouTube account. If you log on to YouTube and comment on a CIT video, any personal information you included when registering for your account will be visible to visitors who click on the comment. If you do not log in before watching CIT videos posted on YouTube, you cannot comment on CIT videos and your site use will not be associated with you or a YouTube account. YouTube’s privacy policy is the same as Google's privacy policy and is available at http://www.google.com/intl/en/policies/privacy.

CIT conducts and publishes a Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA) for each use of a third-party website as they may have a different functionality or practice. To learn more, visit the published PIAs at http://www.hhs.gov/pia/#Third-Party.

For more information on the uses of social and new media for which the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) has negotiated a federally-friendly Terms of Service Agreement, visit DigitalGov at Negotiated Terms of Service Agreements.

 

For More Information

For more information about the CIT privacy policy, please contact the CIT Privacy Act Liaison:

Erica Williams

willieri@mail.nih.gov

301-402-1775


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