Privacy Statement

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Public Records Law Limits Privacy

As a general rule, personally identifiable information that may be collected by The Ohio Development Services Agency (Development) through its websites (www.development.ohio.gov and all sites ending in development.ohio.gov), including names and addresses, is not private. Development is subject to Ohio's Public Records Act, and records maintained by Development are made available for inspection and copying upon request unless a legal exception applies. For example, if you use the website to submit an inquiry, your message will be a record available for public inspection.

The Public Records Act contains exceptions that protect some records from public disclosure. If any information you submit through the website protected from disclosure by a Public Records Act exception, the page on which the information is collected will note that a Public Records Act exception applies. If a Public Records Act exception is not noted, you should assume that any information you submit to Development through the website will be publicly available upon request, and Development cannot promise to keep that information private.

Ohio law treats certain personally identifiable information as confidential. Development generally does not collect confidential personal information through pages on the website that are accessible to the public. In some cases, Development may collect confidential personal information or confidential business information through web forms. In those cases, Development implements security procedures to protect confidential personal information and confidential business information from unauthorized disclosure in the transmission of that information through the Internet. Development also takes steps, as required by Ohio law, to maintain confidential personal information and confidential business information in its systems.

Types of Information Being Collected and Use of the Information

General Usage Statistics:

Development collects general usage statistics for its websites. These statistics do not contain personally identifiable information such as a user's name, address, telephone number, email address, etc. The statistics do contain IP address information and user traffic information related to users' movement within the website. The usage statistics are used to measure traffic to our program and divisional website pages and determine the paths users take to access that information.

Incoming Inquiries via Online Forms and Email:

Unsolicited inquiries to Development are logged and then forwarded to the appropriate person within Development. The logged information includes all information the user submits and also includes the general usage statistics as described above. Personally identifiable information provided to Development through on-line forms is not private. That information is subject to disclosure under the Public Records Act. Incoming inquiries may from time to time be analyzed to provide information or to determine the volume of interest for the inquiry group to which the message is directed.

Information Solicited by the Department:

Users of certain programs or services of Development may be required to report information periodically. Some users will be directed to specially designed pages of the Department's website for reporting of the required information. In any case that a person is required to submit information to the Department, the type of information being used and the use of that information will be consistent with applicable requirements of the program or agreement between the parties, regardless of the collection mechanism.

Note: Exceptions to the Public Records Act may apply to some reporting information. Refer to reporting instructions on the applicable website page for additional information. Development will make reasonable efforts to describe on web-based reporting forms whether or not a Public Records Act exception applies to the information submitted through that form.

Cookies:

A cookie may be created which may link your computer to Development's website. Cookies may be used when necessary to complete a transaction, to process data submitted to Development online or to facilitate ongoing Internet interaction. Information collected on Development's websites, including cookies, may be subject to disclosure pursuant to a public records request.

Security:

We follow Ohio state laws that require the establishment of reasonable precautions to protect confidential personal information from unauthorized modification, destruction, use, or disclosure. We take very seriously the integrity of the information and systems that we maintain. Therefore, we have instituted security measures for all information systems under our control. These security measures are designed to identify attempts to tamper with Development's website. Information collected through these security measures or any of the measures identified above may be used in connection with criminal prosecutions or other legal proceedings.

Access and Dispute of Information Rights

Pursuant to Ohio Revised Code sections 149.43, 1347.08 and 1347.09, users have rights to their information given through Development's website. Those rights relate to inspecting, correcting and disputing the veracity of information. These rights are applicable to any information collected, used or maintained on this website. To further inquire, please contact Development's Regulatory contact, by email or by telephone at (614) 466-5017.

Contact:

Any questions concerning this Privacy Statement may be directed to Development's Legal Office. The Legal Office may be contacted by clicking here or by telephone at (614) 466-7611.

Revision Date: September 19, 2012