The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, recognizes the concerns of individuals regarding privacy and online data collection. We strive to respect and protect the privacy expectations of our website visitors.
All websites collect some information regarding visitors. Types of information collected are wide-ranging, and are collected both passively (by the web servers that host the websites) and actively (via user input through forms, surveys, etc.).
Some of the information collected allows site owners to determine who a particular visitor is and to track their behavior within and across a website domain.
However, most of the information collected cannot identify you as a particular individual and is only collected in aggregate.
Websites within the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, website domain, utk.edu, likewise collect information regarding site visitors. This policy outlines the types of information (data) collected, our methods for collecting data, and the reasons we collect data.
Gathering & Use of Information
The following are examples of information that may be collected in aggregate to provide campus communicators, site owners, content managers, designers, and IT specialists insight into visitor behavior for the purpose of improving university websites and access to university information.
- The Internet Protocol (IP) address of the computer and name of the Internet domain used to access the Internet;
- IP addresses of websites linking directly to sites within the utk.edu domain;
- The date and time a site was accessed within the utk.edu domain;
- Pages visited (“requested”) during this session;
- Web browser and operating system used to access a site within the utk.edu domain;
- Device used to access a site within the utk.edu domain.
University of Tennessee websites commonly use one of the following methods to collect this data:
Cookies are small pieces of data sent from our website(s) and stored in your web browser. Accepting cookies allows visitors to set user preferences and otherwise enable a more “personalized” experience with a website. Users may set preferences regarding the storage of cookies within their individual web browsers, which can also be used to remove stored cookies.
Third-party Tracking (e.g. Google Analytics)
Many websites within the utk.edu domain use Google Analytics to collect visitor data in aggregate. This data is also collected using cookies set by Google. See Google’s privacy and terms with regard to partner sites for more info: https://www.google.com/policies/privacy/partners/ The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, may also transmit NPII collected by third-party tracking services (cookies) to other third parties (e.g. Facebook) so that you may see messages from the university when you visit other websites outside of the utk.edu domain.
All web servers collect very basic visitor information to monitor site usage and performance.
The following are examples of personal information that visitors may choose to share with the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, via a website interface (e.g. an online form or survey):
- E-mail address
- Phone number
- Mailing address
- Subject matter interests
- Date of high school graduation
The university may also collect personal information about you from third parties, including trusted vendors, suppliers, and related companies. This is primarily done for the purpose of recruiting students to attend the university.
If you have shared personal information with UT, we may use that information to tailor services to you, to fulfill materials requests, to contact you, or to display web content that may be of particular interest to you.
The university does not share personal information with third parties except:
- As required by law,
- As necessary to protect the university’s interests,
- With trusted vendors contracted by the university who have agreed to keep this information confidential.
In these latter cases, we share relevant personal information with trusted vendors to gain insight into ways we can improve your overall experience and otherwise further your interest in our university.
We do not sell any personal information to third parties.
Policy Updates and Changes
Technology used to access the internet and build websites changes nearly every day. Likewise, the ways in which online data is generated and collected change frequently. We reserve the right to update and make changes to this policy, and we encourage site visitors to reference it periodically to familiarize themselves with its current terms.
For a broader policy on the expectation of user privacy at the University of Tennessee, please see IT0110—Acceptable Use of Information Technology Resources.
Last updated: August 2016