The Harrison Public Library (HPL) is committed to protecting the privacy of patrons and maintaining the confidentiality of Library records as required by the State of New York.*
The Library does not ask Library visitors to identify themselves or reveal any personal information unless they are borrowing materials, requesting special services, registering for programs or classes, or accessing the Library’s website from outside the Library.
The Library does collect and retain limited personal information to conduct Library operations and to provide or improve Library services. The Library does not share patron information with third parties except as outlined below and only when it is necessary for the operation of the Library, required by law, or at the request of the patron.
Personal Information Collected
Individuals are required to provide this information in order to establish and maintain an active account with the Library:
- Telephone number
- Email address
- Date of birth
- Library barcode card number
- Library Personal Identification Number (PIN)
- Materials currently checked out or requested
- Unpaid fines (until paid)
The link between personal information and checkout information is broken when items are successfully returned, unless a patron exercises the option to retain a checkout history.
Information Automatically Collected on a Visit to the Library’s Website
When a visitor accesses the Library’s website, harrisonpl.org, certain information is automatically recorded, including:
- Service Provider and IP address of the accessing computer
- Type and version of browser and operating system used to access the website
- Date and time
- Pages visited, when, and for how long
- Previous Web address where the visit was initially launched.
The Library utilizes Google Analytics, a Web analysis service. This analysis is utilized by the Library to learn how its website is used and how to make improvements. Google Analytics does not collect or store any personally identifiable information. Please refer to google.com/policies/privacy/partners/ for more information.
A cookie is a small text file that a website places on a hard drive. The HPL website places cookies, but they cannot be read by other websites and do not contain any personally identifiable information. The cookies are used to verify that a user is authorized to gain access to particular Library resources, to customize content areas, or to analyze site activity. A patron may need to enable cookies in order to access a number of resources on the Library’s website.
Links to Other Websites
The Library is not responsible for the privacy practices, security, or content of any external websites to which it has provided links. It is the responsibility of users to familiarize themselves with the privacy and security policies of each external site visited.
The Harrison Public Library is very concerned about children’s privacy. Children who access services from the HPL or the Westchester Library System website should limit the amount of personal information they provide. The Library encourages all parents and guardians to learn about their children’s online activities, to participate in their children’s exploration of the Internet, and to tell their children about the importance of not revealing personal information online and of asking for a parent’s/guardian’s permission before providing their last name or contact information to any website.
The Harrison Public Library makes every effort to ensure that its contracts, licenses, and offsite computer service arrangements reflect its policies and legal obligations concerning user privacy and confidentiality. Should a third party require access to a patron’s personally identifiable information, HPL’s agreements appropriately address the use, aggregation, dissemination, and sale of that information.
The Harrison Public Library partners with reputable third-party vendors to provide certain services. These vendors are permitted to access a patron’s personal information only to verify that the patron has a valid library account at the Harrison Public Library.
With a patron’s permission, the Library may also share contact information with its affiliates: the Friends of the Harrison Public Library and/or the Harrison Public Library Foundation.
Westchester Library System
The Harrison Public Library is a member of the Westchester Library System (WLS). WLS does not collect any personal information when a user visits its websites or registers for a program unless the patron chooses to provide such information. WLS places account information on the secure portion of its computer system. For this reason, patrons are asked to input their barcode number and PIN each time they access their account information on the website.
Law Enforcement Requests for Library Records
The Library Director is solely authorized to receive court-ordered requests for Library records from law enforcement. Library staff and volunteers are required to refer any law enforcement inquiries to the Director immediately. Before complying with any such request, the Director will make every effort to consult with the Library Board of Trustees and the legal counsel of the Town/Village of Harrison.
Questions, Concerns, and Complaints
The Library only uses and shares personal information as described above. Library users who have questions, concerns, or complaints about the Library’s handling of their privacy and confidentiality rights may file written comments with the Library Director. After consultation with the Library Board of Trustees, who may conduct a privacy investigation or a review of policy and procedures as a result of such an inquiry, a response will be given to the patron.
*NY Civil Practice Law and Rules §4509: Library records, which contain names or other personally identifying details regarding the users of public, free association, school, college and university libraries and library systems of this state, including but not limited to records related to the circulation of materials, computer database searches, interlibrary loan transactions, reference queries, requests for photocopies of library materials, title reserve requests, or the use of audio-visual materials, films or records, shall be confidential and shall not be disclosed except that such records may be disclosed to the extent necessary for the proper operation of such library and shall be disclosed upon request or consent of the user or pursuant to subpoena, court order or where otherwise required by statute.
Approved by the Harrison Public Library Board of Trustees, April 1, 2016