National Clearinghouse on Homeless Youth and Families

Privacy Policy

Administration for Children and Families Privacy Policy Notice

Thank you for visiting the Administration for Children and Families web site and for reviewing our Privacy Policy. Our policy is clear:

We collect no information about you, other than information automatically collected and stored, when you visit our web site unless you choose to provide that information to us.

This privacy notice applies to www.acf.hhs.gov and a number of other ACF websites with unique domains.  However, some ACF websites maintain their own privacy policy notices. You can find links to the applicable privacy notice in the footer of each ACF website.

  • We do not collect personally identifiable information (PII) about you unless you choose to provide that information to us.
  • Any personal information you chose to provide is protected by security practices.
  • Non-personal information related to your visit to our website may be automatically collected and temporarily stored.
  • ACF does not disclose, give, sell, or transfer any personal information about our visitors unless required for law enforcement or by Federal law.

Health Information Privacy
For more information on your health information privacy and security rights, or on the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules, visit the HHS Office for Civil Rights.

Privacy Act Information
You may also want to read information about the Privacy Act at HHS.  Also see the Privacy Act of 1974. Visit disclaimer page (Department of Justice).

For more detailed information on ACF privacy, see these topics below:

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Personal Information Voluntarily Submitted to ACF

You do not have to give us personal information to visit our web sites. If you choose to provide ACF with personal information -- for example by completing a “Contact Us” form, leaving a comment, sending email, or completing a survey -- we may use that information to respond to your message and/or help us get you the information or services you requested. Submitting personal information (name, address, telephone number, email address, etc.) is voluntary and is not required to access information on our website.

We retain the information only for as long as necessary to respond to your question or request, in most cases no longer than three months. Information submitted electronically is maintained and destroyed as required by the Federal Records Act and records schedules of the National Archives and Records Administration. It may be subject to disclosure in certain cases (for example, if required by a Freedom of Information Act request, court order, or Congressional access request, or if authorized by a Privacy Act System of Records Notice). It is subject to the Privacy Act if maintained in a Privacy Act system.

For more information, see:

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Interaction with Children Online

ACF will take all reasonable steps necessary to protect the privacy and safety of any child from whom information is collected, as required by the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). A child’s parent or guardian is required to provide consent before ACF collects, uses, or shares personal information from a child under age 13.

Information and instructions will be provided by the specific Web page that collects information about a child. The Web page will specify exactly what the information will be used for, who will see it, and how long it will be kept.

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Visiting an Official ACF Page on Third-Party Websites

We maintain accounts on third-party websites, such as social media sites, as tools to better interact with the public. The security and privacy policies of third-party websites apply to your activity on those sites. Users of third-party websites often share information with the general public, user community, and/or the third-party operating the website. You should review the privacy policies of all websites before using them and ensure that you understand how your information may be used. You should also adjust privacy settings on your account on any third-party website to match your preferences.

ACF Accounts

Common third-party websites in use include:

For more information on ACF/HHS maintained accounts on third-party websites, visit the ACF Center for New Media or read the ACF Privacy Policy.

Information Collected and Used from Third-Party Websites

If you have an account with a third-party website, and choose to follow, like, friend, or comment, certain PII associated with your account may be made available based on the privacy policies of the third-party website and your privacy settings within that third-party website. ACF sometimes collects and uses PII made available through third-party websites. We do not share personally identifiable information made available through these websites.

ACF conducts and publishes a Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA) for each use of a third-party website. Each use of a third-party website may have unique functionality or practices. To learn more, review the published assessments.

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Information Automatically Collected and Stored

When you browse through any web site, certain personal information about you can be collected. We automatically collect and temporarily store the following information about your visit:

  • The name of the domain you use to access the Internet (for example, aol.com, if you are using an American Online account, or stanford.edu, if you are connecting from Stanford University's domain);
  • The date and time of your visit;
  • The pages you visited;
  • Type of browser used; and
  • The address of the web site you came from when you came to visit.

We use this information for statistical purposes and to help us make our site more useful to visitors. Unless it is specifically stated otherwise, no additional information will be collected about you. ACF will record your email address in the event that you send a message by email.

Your email address will be temporarily stored and will only be used for the purpose for which you have provided it. Your email address will not be added to any mailing lists without your consent by way of a specific request in writing.

Disclosure

ACF does not disclose, give, sell or transfer any personal information about our visitors, unless required for law enforcement by statute.

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Demographic and Interest Data

On some portions of our website we have enabled Universal Analytics (UA) to provide aggregate demographic and interest data of our visitors. This information cannot be used to identify you as an individual. While these tools are used by some websites to serve advertisements, ACF only uses them to measure demographic data. ACF has no control over advertisements served on other websites.

Other Web Measurement and Customization Tools

We use the specified software and features below:

  • AddThis: ACF offers AddThis on its websites, giving visitors the option to bookmark and share ACF website content on certain social media sites. Using AddThis on ACF websites does not require registration or personally identifiable information. The AddThis Privacy policy is available at http://www.addthis.com/privacyVisit disclaimer page
  • Bit.ly: ACF uses Bit.ly to shorten long URLs for use in email and social media messages. Bit.ly provides analytics on how many people clicked on the URLs distributed by ACF. Bit.ly analytics do not provide any personally identifiable information about the visitors who click the shortened links. The Bit.ly Privacy Policy is available at http://bit.ly/pages/privacyVisit disclaimer page
  • CrazyEgg: ACF uses CrazyEgg to obtain information on how visitors are interacting with specific ACF Web pages. This allows ACF to evaluate and, if necessary or beneficial, to modify its websites to improve value and usability. The data CrazyEgg collects includes information about as how visitors navigate around a Web page and the most commonly clicked links on a specific Web page. CrazyEgg does not collect personally identifiable information. The Crazy Egg Privacy Policy is available at http://www.crazyegg.com/privacyVisit disclaimer page
  • Google AdWords: ACF occasionally uses Google AdWords to provide online advertisement delivery and tracking. ACF may employ tools provided by Google AdWords to support Display Advertising, including Remarketing, Google Display Network Impression Reporting, data collection via advertising cookies and anonymous identifiers, the DoubleClick Campaign Manager integration and/or Google Analytics Demographics and Interest Reporting. In general, this means that third-party vendors, including Google, may show ACF ads on sites across the Internet based upon visits to ACF websites. To implement these tools, ACF and third-party vendors, including Google, use first-party cookies and third- party cookies together to inform, optimize, and serve ads based on past visits to ACF websites. The Google AdWords Privacy Policy is available at https://www.google.com/intl/en/policies/privacy/Visit disclaimer page
  • Google Analytics: ACF may employ tools provided by Google Analytics to support Display Advertising, including Remarketing, Google Display Network Impression Reporting, data collection via advertising cookies and anonymous identifiers, the DoubleClick Campaign Manager integration and/or Google Analytics Demographics and Interest Reporting. In general, this means that third-party vendors, including Google, may show ACF ads on sites across the Internet based upon visits to ACF websites. To implement these tools, ACF and third-party vendors, including Google, use first-party cookies and third- party cookies together to inform, optimize, and serve ads based on past visits to ACF websites. The Google Analytics Privacy Policy is available at https://www.google.com/intl/en/policies/privacy/Visit disclaimer page
  • Widgets: ACF offers widgets that provide specific ACF site content to any website where the widget code is implemented. You can install an ACF widget on any website simply by using adding the ACF provided code to a website’s source HTML code. If you choose to install ACF widgets, they will not collect any type of Personally Identifiable Information from you.
  • Was this helpful?: ACF uses a survey tool to collect feedback from ACF website visitors. The tool is implemented on ACF websites both as on-page surveys. ACF uses survey results to measure visitor satisfaction with our websites. This survey tool does not require users to submit personally identifiable information. The survey reports are available only to ACF managers, members of the ACF Communications and Digital Teams, and other designated staff who require this information to perform their duties.

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Cookies

Websites can automatically place small text files, known as “cookies,” on the computers of their visitors. So long as they do not expire or get deleted, cookies identify the unique browser used by the visitor. On each subsequent visit to the website, the visitor’s browser will retrieve the cookie, allowing us to aggregate the number of return visitors. ACF uses “cookies” to test and optimize our website design and content. We use two types of cookies on our websites:

You can take actions to block cookies by opting outVisit disclaimer page. Blocking session cookies from your computer will not affect your access to the content and tools on our website. Blocking multi-session or persistent cookies may affect the personalization of the information on those sites.

Persistent Cookies

Consistent with the Department of Health and Human Services' policy on the Usage of Persistent Cookies, "persistent" web cookies are not used on ACF web sites, or by contractors operating web sites on behalf of ACF, unless certain conditions are met, including clear and conspicuous notice. "Persistent" web cookies are defined as web cookies that can track the activities of users over time and across different web sites.

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Website Security

This site is maintained by the U.S. Government. It is protected by federal laws. You can be arrested and prosecuted for violating these laws.

For site security purposes and to ensure that this service remains available to all users, we use software programs to monitor traffic to identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information or otherwise cause damage. In the event of law enforcement investigations and as part of any required legal process, information from these sources may be used to help identify an individual.

 

Intrusion Detection

This site is maintained by the U.S. Government. It is protected by various provisions of Title 18, U.S. Code. Violations of Title 18 are subject to criminal prosecution in federal court. For site security purposes and to ensure that this service remains available to all users, we employ software programs to monitor traffic to identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information, or otherwise cause damage. In the event of authorized law enforcement investigations, and pursuant to any required legal process, information from these sources may be used to help identify an individual.

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Last Reviewed: October 17, 2016