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Privacy Notice

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, HUD User 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 HUD User Web site or associated Web sites, HUD User 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 HUD User and related Web sites, 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 HUD User
Personal information submitted by a user in comments or questions via phone, fax, or e-mail is not distributed to parties outside of HUD User. 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 HUD User Web Store
Personal information supplied by a user when submitting an order via HUD User, 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.

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

HUD User does not enable cookies to monitor usage or to gather users' personal information; however, "session cookies" are used to aid in the selection of items on the HUD User Web store. To take full advantage of the shopping cart features on the HUD User Web store, users must have session cookies enabled on their browser. Session cookies disappear from the user's computer when an Internet session ends.

Definitions of Privacy Terms

  • 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." HDU USER currently follows this recommendation.
  • Encryption: Encryption technology ensures the protection of personal information via private, secure transactions.HUD User now features an encryption service that ensures private, secure transactions for customers who submit electronic orders by credit card through the Web store.  This technology is provided by Verisign, the leading provider of Internet-based trust services and digital certificate solutions used by Web sites, electronic-commerce service providers, and individuals to conduct trusted and secure electronic commerce and communications over IP networks.

Security

Site security is the concept of monitoring network traffic to identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information on HUD User'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 HUD User will ever collect personal information and/or monitor user activity without asking permission or giving prior notice.

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