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Privacy Policy

The concept of online privacy includes the right to decide what personal information you choose to submit online, and how that information will be used, if at all. To protect user privacy, the U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO) follows Office of Management and Budget (OMB) recommendations and other suggestions regarding Internet privacy policy for Federal Government web sites. In doing so, we strive to make users aware of the kinds of information we collect from them, explaining why we collect that information, how we use it, and whether it will be shared with others.
Information Collected Automatically when users surf the GPO Web site or hosted Federal Web sites, GPO collects the following data for statistical purposes only:

  • the IP address from which users access our Web site;
  • the date and time of their visits;
  • the URLs of the pages that they view;
  • WAIS searches and retrievals, including search terms.

We use these statistics to make improvements to, not to identify individual users or their searches. We do not enable cookies to monitor usage or to gather users' personal information.

Information Collected via Correspondence with GPO
Personal information submitted by a user in comments or questions via phone, fax, or e-mail is not distributed to parties outside of GPO. Identifying information, such as name, e-mail address, and phone or fax number, is used only for responding to users' comments or questions, and is not made available for other purposes.

Information Collected via the U.S. Government Online Bookstore
Personal information supplied by a user when submitting an order via our U.S. Government Online Bookstore, or, phone, fax, or e-mail is used for fulfilling that order. This information may be used to notify customers of new products that may be of interest to them. GPO provides names and addresses, upon request, only to the publishing agency of the specific product purchased.

GPO is pleased to participate on open, un-moderated forums offered by commercial social networks sites in order to increase Government transparency, promote public participation, and encourage collaboration. We currently maintain official GPO accounts on Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter.  We also send out opt-in emails through our New Title by Topic email lists located at our online bookstore, and we allow comments to be posted to our Government Book Talk blog.  Please note that GPO does not control or endorse the comments or opinions provided by visitors to these sites or to our blog.

Information submitted through an order placed on the U.S. Government Online Bookstore is protected by the use of commercial encryption software. By using this software to create a secure environment for online information exchange, GPO ensures that only authorized personnel can view personal information, such as credit card numbers.

Disclaimer for GPO Information
All information provided by GPO on this U.S. Government Bookstore site is made available to provide immediate access for the convenience of interested persons. While GPO believes the information to be reliable, human or mechanical error remains a possibility. Therefore, GPO does not guarantee the accuracy, completeness, timeliness, or correct sequencing of the information. Neither GPO, nor any of the sources of the information, shall be responsible for any error or omission, or for the use of, or the results obtained from the use of, this information. 

The material available for purchase from the U.S. Government Bookstore web site is produced by the three branches of the Federal Government and trade names, trademarks,  agency seals, logos, and other symbols or insignia should be accepted as official Federal Government content and are often protected by their agency regulations.  An end user will need to request permission to use these symbols.  Most content produced by the Federal Government is in the public domain.  If specific content has any copyrighted material within its content, it shall be noted within the document and applicable Federal laws apply. Citation to the appropriate source of the originating information is appreciated, as appropriate for public domain content.

Disclaimer of Endorsement
Reference herein to any specific commercial products, processes, or services by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise, does not constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the U.S. Government.


Cookies: Cookies are small pieces of information that Web servers or pages store on a user's hard drive. There are two types of cookies: session cookies and persistent cookies. Both types of cookies allow Internet servers to "remember" specific information about a user. Web sites use them primarily to personalize their sites for individual users, to keep track of orders when users purchase products, and to target advertising toward users based on the information that they access. However, session cookies will "remember" that information for only as long as you explore a Web site during one "session", or visit to the Web site. Session cookies will not "remember" information about you when you return to the site for subsequent visits. However, persistent cookies will "remember" this information for more than one session. OMB has decided that persistent cookies should not be allowed on Government web sites, except in "the most unusual of circumstances." GPO currently follows this recommendation.

Encryption: Encryption technology ensures the protection of personal information via private, secure transactions. View encryption information for the U.S. Government Online Bookstore.

Security: Site security is the concept of monitoring network traffic to identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information on GPO's servers. In the case that suspicious activity of this sort arises, a user's personal information may be tracked to identify a possible threat. This is the only reason that GPO will ever collect personal information and/or monitor user activity without asking permission or giving prior notice.

Note: To assist users in finding official Government information, we provide links to other Web sites. Once users have left and entered another site, they are subject to the policies and legal notices on that site.

Disclaimer for Hypertext Links
Neither GPO nor its contributors are responsible for the content of any off-site pages that are referenced by or that reference to GPO’s Government Bookstore web site. The user specifically acknowledges that neither the GPO nor its contributors are responsible for any defamatory, offensive, misleading, or illegal conduct of other users, links, or third parties and that the risk of injury from the foregoing rests entirely with the user. Links from the GPO Government Bookstore web site on the World Wide Web to other sites or from other sites to the GPO Government Bookstore web site do not constitute an endorsement by GPO. These links are for convenience only and often point to where Federal Content is available for sale or to the authoring Federal agency. It is the responsibility of the user to evaluate the content and usefulness of information obtained from other sites. You are subject to that site's privacy policy when you leave our site. We are not responsible for Section 508 compliance (accessibility) on other federal or private Web sites.

Copyright Status Notice
Unless specifically stated otherwise, all information on the U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO) website is in the public domain, and may be reproduced, published or otherwise used without GPO's permission.
Some photographs in major banners and navigation headings are commercially licensed and cannot be reproduced, published or otherwise used.

Accessibility / Section 508 Compliance

In 1998, President Clinton signed the Workforce Investment Act into law. This Act amended Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 to include accessibility requirements for electronic and information technology. Section 508 now requires that electronic and information technology used by the Federal Government, including their Web sites, be made as accessible for people with disabilities as it is for people without disabilities. The U.S. Access Board has outlined specific accessibility standards for implementing Section 508, especially as it applies to Web pages.

The U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO) has always had a commitment to accessibility. In the past, we have taken time to ensure that GPO’s web sites complied with provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and other accessibility concerns, whenever feasible.

Currently, GPO is working to ensure that existing web pages are Section 508-compliant, and that future pages will be created specifically with these accessibility standards in mind.

Feel free to contact us for any reason, especially if you encounter barriers to accessibility on any of our Web pages. With your help, we can work together to ensure that all GPO public web sites remain as accessible as possible. Please direct questions, comments, or recommendations regarding the accessibility of this web site tothe GPO Contact Center.

More information about Section 508 can be found on:

Site Security

As a Government agency, the U.S. Government Printing Office is committed to the security of its information systems.

Web site security is the concept of monitoring network traffic to identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information on GPO's servers.

As this is an official United States Government System, it may be used only for authorized purposes. For site security purposes and to ensure that this service remains available to all users, we employ software that can monitor network traffic and identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information, or otherwise cause damage.

Use of this system constitutes consent to such monitoring and auditing. Except for authorized law enforcement investigations, this monitoring and auditing is not used to identify individual users or their usage habits.

Uploading or changing information, or attempting to upload or change information, on this service are strictly prohibited and may be punishable under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986 and the National Information Infrastructure Protection Act.

If you choose to transmit or receive personal information electronically (such as by e-mail), you should be aware that we cannot guarantee confidentiality across the Internet.

Many browsers support Secure Sockets Layer (SSL), a communications protocol which encrypts data transferred between your browser and a web server. The U.S. Government Bookstore web site offers SSL encryption for credit card purchases from our online bookstore.

You may also purchase our products by telephone through our GPO Customer Contact Center, 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. EST, Monday through Friday (except Federal Holidays), by calling:

  • Toll-Free: 1.866.512.1800
  • From the Washington, DC Area or International: 1.202.512.1800
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Last updated: March 9, 2012