In the State of Rhode Island, laws exist to ensure that government is open and that the public has access to appropriate information obtained and held by the government. At the same time, the State recognizes that personal information collected by the State should be used only for the purpose for which it is collected. Except as authorized by law, such information will not be disclosed to other persons or organizations. Therefore, it is the policy of the State of Rhode Island that all personal information collected by state government Web sites shall be subject to the following principles:
- Electronic information – information collected and held electronically shall be afforded the same protection as non-electronic information;
- Collection of personal information – the collection of personal information shall be limited to and consistent with the requirements of the government program or activity;
- Use of personal information – individuals shall be informed as to why information is being collected and how it will be used;
- Disclosure of personal information – disclosure of information shall be limited to the purpose for which it was collected unless otherwise authorized by law; when practical and provided by law, information may be obtained from other government entities;
- Access to personal information – individuals shall be allowed a reasonable opportunity to obtain access to their personal information and to ensure that it is correct; and
- Security precautions – reasonable precautions shall be taken to ensure the security of personal information.
What information about users does the State of Rhode Island collect through its Web sites?
What information is collected automatically?
The following information is collected and stored automatically from all users accessing State of Rhode Island Web sites:
- The Internet domain (for example, “xcompany.com” if you use a private Internet access account, or “yourschool.edu” if you connect from a university’s domain) and Internet Protocol (IP) address from which you access our site;
- The type of hardware, browser and operating system used to access our site;
- The date and time you access our site;
- The number of bytes of data transmitted during your visit;
- Transaction and routing information to and from your computer;
- The pages you visit; and
- If you linked to our site from another Web site, the address of that Web site (URL).
This information is used for purposes such as assessing what information is of most interest to users and system enhancements.
What about personal information voluntarily provided to the State?
Unless you choose to do so (i.e. sending an E-mail, participating in a survey, responding to a feedback or “contact us” form, or applying for benefits or State services), State of Rhode Island Web sites do not obtain personally identifying information.
We consider any information that could reasonably be used to identify you as “personally identifying information.” This may include, but is not limited to:
- Your name;
- Your address (excluding zip code);
- Your E-mail address;
- Your social security number;
- Your password;
- Bank account information;
- Credit card information;
- License or identification number;
- Telephone number;
- Medical or disability information;
- Any combination of data that could be used to identify you such as birth date, zip code and gender; and
- Any graphical or visual representation of you.
Government agencies may request personally identifying information from you in order to provide requested services, but such information is handled as it would be on an in-person visit to a government office.
If personal information is requested on the Web site or volunteered by the user, State law and the federal Privacy Act of 1974 may protect it. However, this information is a public record once you provide it, and may be subject to public inspection, distribution and copying if not protected by federal or State law.
How can I access and correct my personal information?
Persons concerned about information contained in their personal records should contact the custodian of the record, which typically is the State agency or other governmental entity that collects and maintains the information.
The State does not disclose any personal information except when: permission has been granted by the individual; where the information is considered public information under Rhode Island Law, and is not otherwise protected from disclosure by applicable State or federal laws; or, we are required to do so by law, subpoena, court order or legal process.
The State of Rhode Island has instituted security measures to protect the information and systems that we maintain. These measures are designed to ensure that this service remains available to all users by blocking unauthorized access to our systems and preventing corruption of data, thus providing reasonable protection of personal information in our possession.
State of Rhode Island Web sites may contain links to or data from other, non-State Web sites. When linking to another site, this State of Rhode Island Privacy Notice no longer applies. The State of Rhode Island does not endorse any products or services linked from or supplied to this site. In addition, some State agencies may have policies specific to their agency that augment or supersede this policy.
While the State of Rhode Island’s Web sites are intended to provide current and accurate information, neither the State nor any of its employees, agencies, and officers can warranty the information contained on the site and shall not be held liable for any losses caused on the reliance of information provided. Relying on information contained on these sites is done at one’s own risk.
Additional questions or concerns about this Privacy Notice should be directed to the Governor’s Office, listed below.