When visitors send email messages containing personal information to the general grants.nih.gov email box OERWebmaster03@od.nih.gov, staff from the NIH Office of Extramural Research (OER) respond to the letters and file them accordingly. Only designated staff members requiring access to the emails may view or answer them.
Types of Information Collected
When you browse through any Web site, certain information about your visit can be collected. We automatically collect and temporarily store the following type of 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 used when visiting the site
- Date and time of your visit
- Pages you visited
- Address of the Web site that connected you to an NIH Web site (such as google.com or bing.com)
We use this information to measure the number of visitors to our site and its various sections and to help make our site more useful to visitors.
How OER Collects Information
NIH Web sites use a variety of different Web measurement software tools, and specific information regarding information collection can be found on their respective Web sites.
Grants.nih.gov uses Webtrends and Google Analytics measurement software to collect the information in the bulleted list in the Types of Information Collected section above. Webtrends and Google Analytics collect information automatically and continuously. No personally identifiable information is collected. OER staff conducts analyses and reports on the aggregated data from Webtrends and Google Analytics. The reports are available to grants.nih.gov managers, members of the grants.nih.gov Communications and Web Teams, and other staff who may need to access this information to perform their duties.
NIH retains the data from Webtrends and Google Analytics survey results as long as needed to support the mission of the grants.nih.gov Web site.
The Office of Management and Budget 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 Web site, 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 Web pages. Cookies from OER Web pages 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 says, "This tier encompasses any use of single session web measurement and customization technologies."
Persistent Cookies: We use persistent cookies to enable Webtrends and Google Analytics to differentiate between new and returning grants.nih.gov visitors. Persistent cookies remain on your computer between visits to grants.nih.gov until they expire. The OMB Memo 10-22 Guidance defines our use of persistent cookies as "Usage Tier 2-Multi-session without Personally Identifiable Information (PII)." The policy says, "This tier encompasses any use of multi-session Web measurement and customization technologies when no PII is collected."
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 grants.nih.gov. Instructions for disabling or opting out of cookies in the most popular browsers are located at http://www.usa.gov/optout_instructions.shtml. Please note that by following the instructions to opt-out of cookies, you will disable cookies from all sources, not just those from grants.nih.gov.
How Personal Information Is Protected
You do not have to give us personal information to visit the NIH Web sites. 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 personally identifiable information, that is, information that is personal in nature and which may be used to identify you, through an e-mail message, request for information, paper or electronic form, questionnaire, etc., 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).
If OER operates a record system designed to retrieve information about you in order to accomplish its mission, a Privacy Act Notification Statement should be prominently and conspicuously displayed on the public-facing website or form which asks you to provide personally identifiable information. The notice must address the following 5 criteria:
- NIH legal authorization to collect information about you
- Purpose of the information collection
- Routine uses for disclosure of information outside of NIH
- Whether the request made of you is voluntary or mandatory under law
- Effects of non-disclosure if you choose to not provide the requested information
Third-Party Sites and Applications
How Grants.NIH.gov Uses Third-Party Websites and Applications
Third-Party Web sites and Applications (TPWA) are Web-based technologies that are not exclusively operated or controlled by NIH, such as non-.gov hosted applications and those embedded on an NIH Web pages that could cause personally identifiable information (PII) to become available or accessible to NIH, regardless of whether NIH solicits or collects it.
As part of the Open Government Directive, grants.nih.gov 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. The following list includes the Web sites and applications we use and their purposes. For any sites or applications that collect PII, this list also includes details on information collected and how NIH protects your private information.
Data Safeguarding and Privacy
- Purpose of the web measurement and/or customization technology;
- Usage Tier, session type, and technology used;
- Nature of the information collected;
- Purpose and use of the information;
- Whether and to whom the information will be disclosed;
- Privacy safeguards applied to the information;
- Data retention policy for the information;
- Whether the technology is enabled by default or not and why;
- How to opt-out of the web measurement/customization technology;
- Statement that opting-out still permits users to access comparable information or services; and,
- Identities of all third party vendors involved in the measurement and customization process.
Data Retention and Access Limits NIH will retain data collected using the following technologies long enough to achieve the specified objective for which they were collected. The data generated from these activities falls under the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) General Records Schedule (GRS) 20-item IC 'Electronic Records,' and will be handled per the requirements of that schedule (http://www.archives.gov/records-mgmt/grs/grs20.html).
Third-Party Web Sites and Applications
Facebook: OER has a Facebook page relating to the Loan Repayment Program (http://www.facebook.com/nihlrp