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Privacy Policy
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What is The Cool Spot?

The Cool Spot is a Web site for middle school students about alcohol. It is sponsored by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), the nation’s lead agency supporting research into the causes, prevention, and treatment of alcohol problems. The NIAAA is a component of the National Institutes of Health, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The Cool Spot is committed to providing an engaging, safe, and secure Web site. To show our commitment to the privacy and security of our visitors, The Cool Spot adheres to the requirements of the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) regarding personally identifiable information for children 13 years of age and under. Our policy is to create content that requires as little collection of information from our visitors as possible, and we take special measures to help kids maintain and protect their personal privacy.

Interactive Features

To fully engage The Cool Spot visitors and to enhance their experiences, there are several interactive features on the site. In some instances, users may choose to submit information about ways they avoid alcohol use or resist peer pressure. Users are discouraged from providing names, and no personally identifiable information will be retained or archived on the site.


The Cool Spot maintains an online environment that protects the security, privacy and integrity of all information collected and used within the site. Information is stored within server facilities that use the latest industry standards and practices for protecting information.

Web Cookies

When you visit some Web sites, their web servers generate pieces of information known as cookies. The Cool Spot uses only per-session cookies to serve technical purposes, such as providing seamless navigation through our site. These cookies let our server know that you are continuing a visit to our site. These cookies do not permanently record data and they are not stored on your computer's hard drive. Per-session cookies are stored in memory and are only available during an active browser session. When you close your browser, the per-session cookie disappears. Information collected from per-session cookies will not be disclosed to third parties. Under the framework of OMB M-10-22, this qualifies as a Tier 1 use of website measurement and customization technologies. For these technical purposes, per-session cookies are enabled by default.

How to Opt Out 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 The Cool Spot. Instructions for disabling or opting out of cookies in the most popular browsers are located at Please note that by following the instructions to opt-out of cookies, you may be disabling cookies from all sources, not just those from this Web site.


The Cool Spot does not accept paid advertising in any form, from any organization.

Links to other sites

The Cool Spot is dedicated to providing as safe an environment as possible for visitors while they are on our site. To enhance the information on our site, we may link to other sites for related content, but we cannot be responsible for the information contained there. If a visitor leaves our site through a link on one of our pages, a box is displayed alerting the visitor that they are no longer surfing on our site. For the online safety of kids as well as parents and teachers, we advise that users check the privacy policies of these sites as well. Parents should also review the content of the sites their children visit, to ensure that it is appropriate for them.

Aggregate Log File Data

Log data is information automatically collected from the computers of site visitors. Log data includes such things as the types of computer operating systems, the types of Internet browsers, and the names of the users' Internet Service Providers. It can be viewed only in terms of statistical data and does not include any information that is personally identifiable. This data is used to ensure that the site is accessible to all users. Log data also includes quantitative information such as which site pages and activities are accessed most often, how long a user stays on the web site, how a user gets to the web site, and what keywords a user types into a search engine to find our site. This information is used only to aid future site development by showing which features and pages users visit most and helps us to improve the site for our visitors.

  • IP Addresses.
    IP addresses, which are identification numbers assigned to your specific computer, are collected and used only to gather broad demographic information and are not shared with any outside person or group. We do not use IP addresses to personally identify users.
  • How We Collect Aggregate Log File Data.
    Aggregate log data is collected automatically. The user voluntarily provides all other information collected on the site. Cookies, which are pieces of code embedded into users' computers by web servers, are not used at The Cool Spot.

Email Inquiries

When inquiries are E-mailed to us, we store the question and the E-mail address information so that we can respond electronically. Unless otherwise required by statute, we do not identify publicly who sends questions or comments to our web site. We will not obtain information that will allow us to personally identify you when you visit our site, unless you chose to provide such information to us.
Questions about NIH privacy policies should be sent to the NIAAA Privacy Act Officer through NIAAA Webmaster.

Contact Us

The Cool Spot welcomes your suggestions, comments and concerns about privacy issues. Please contact us at NIAAA Webmaster or write to:

The Cool Spot
National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
5635 Fishers Lane, Room 3098, MSC 9304
Bethesda, MD 20892-9304

Privacy Policy