1. Purpose

    Winston-Salem State University (WSSU), a member of the University of North Carolina system, is committed to ensuring the information security and individual privacy are a priority. This standard discloses the privacy practices applicable to visitors to www.wssu.edu, the website for Winston-Salem State University. WSSU strives to protect the information that it collects and uses, and any information gathered is used for business purposes only.

    As used in this standard, the terms “WSSU, “the university,” “we,” “our,” and “us” refer to Winston-Salem State University. “You” and “your” refer to the individual accessing the web pages owned and controlled by the Winston-Salem State University
  2. Scope

    WSSU by and through its academic, research and administrative units and programs, owns, controls, operates and/or maintains websites under several domains (collectively, “WSSU Web”). This Web Privacy Standard applies to all domains within the WSSU Web.
  3. Standard
    1. Required Link

      Each Web application or site must contain a link titled "Privacy Statement" that links to this standard.

    2. Exceptions

      The WSSU Web consists of hundreds of Web servers. Some servers hosted by WSSU may adopt different privacy statements as their specific needs require. If a WSSU department has a privacy statement that is different from this statement, that policy must be approved by the Office of Information Technology’s Information Security, Compliance, and Services department and Office of Legal Affairs. However, those sites cannot adopt a privacy statement that in any way supersedes federal or state regulations.

      The university is not responsible for the privacy practices or the content of the external websites we link to.
    3. Information Collected, Stored and Reviewed

      The data is used in aggregate by the Office of Information Technology (OIT) and delegated custodians to tune the Public Facing Website Website for its efficiency and is not ordinarily associated with specific individuals. Raw data from the Web server logs is only shared with the custodian of each Website. Summary reports produced from the logs help Web publishers determine what Web browsers and pages are most popular. For example, if the aggregate reports show a Web page is very popular or used more by freshmen than by seniors, publishers might use this information to customize the content of that page and make it easier to find.

      WSSU Public Facing Web servers generate logs that may contain the following information:
      1. University data protected specifically by federal or state law or Winston-Salem State University rules and regulations (e.g., HIPAA; FERPA; Sarbanes-Oxley, Gramm-Leach-Bliley; the North Carolina Identity Theft Statute; specific donor and employee data).
      2. Internet address (IP address) of computer being used
      3. Web pages requested
      4. Referring Web page
      5. Browser used
      6. Date and Time
      7. Other web data are collectively known as “web headers” or “HTTP headers”
      8. WSSU NetID (unique person identifier for UserID-based services only)
    4. Cookies

      Cookies are small text files that collect information about website activity. WSSU sites use cookies for two primary purposes—to carry info about your current site visit from one page to the next and to recognize you and remember your preferences on any subsequent visits.

      You can disable cookies by changing preference settings in your web browser. You can use many WSSU websites with cookies disabled but may find that some functions require cookies.
    5. Pixel tags

      Also called web beacons, web bugs, or clear GIFs, pixel tags are tiny image files that may be used to monitor website use. Disabling cookies in your web browser preferences will prevent pixel tags from collecting any unique information.

      Pixel tags also may be used to track whether you open email messages we send. You can disable some pixel tags by turning off HTML display or images in your email software.
    6. Third-party tracking tools

      Many WSSU websites use third-party tracking tools to monitor and improve sites or to provide ads and other information that may be of interest to users. These tools may collect the following information:
      1. Internet protocol (IP) address for your computer/device
      2. Internet service provider
      3. Web site from which you arrived
      4. Operating system and web browser software
      5. Date and time of your visit
      6. Pages you visit on this site
      7. Terms you use in our site’s search engines
      8. Third-party tools like Google Analytics help website administrators track site usage, understand how users find sites, and improve website function and content.
      9. Other third-party tools show WSSU advertisements on sites across the web. Using cookies and related technologies, these tools show ads to people who’ve previously visited our websites or might be interested in our sites based on other sites they’ve visited.
    7. Tracking Options
      1. The Network Advertising Initiative offers a central site where you can opt-out of certain kinds of tracking or ad targeting by its members.
      2. The Digital Advertising Alliance (DAA) provides a consumer opt-out page for the companies participating in their Self-Regulatory Program for Online Behavioral Advertising.
      3. Some leading companies provide their own opt-out mechanisms for their registered users. For example, at these links, you can control your opt-outs for Google, for Microsoft, and for Yahoo!.
      4. You may also see WSSU ads served to web users in specific geographic areas or ads that appear to every user who visits a given website. These ads may appear regardless of your browsing behavior as there is no consensus yet on how the companies you encounter should interpret Do Not Track (DNT) headers. As a result, most sites do not currently change their practices when they receive a DNT signal. Some companies may refrain from personalizing ads they show you. Others may limit the ways they collect information about your browsing activities.
    8. Information From Other Sources

      The university may get more information about you—like name, age, gender, or social media activity—by searching the Internet or querying third parties. University units or vendors contracted by the university only collect data that’s publicly available or provided by a third party according to its terms of use. This information helps the university provide you with information tailored to your interests.
    9. Public Disclosure/Nondisclosure

      All information collected at this site becomes a public record unless an exemption in law exists. North Carolina General Statutes Chapter 132 contains the North Carolina Public Records Law.

      "Personal information" is information about a natural person that is readily identifiable to that individual, such as an individual's name, address and telephone number. Such personal information may be exempt from disclosure if disclosure would constitute an unreasonable invasion of privacy under the circumstances.
    10. Server logs

      IP addresses, page URLs, and dates and times accessed are automatically logged by our server software for visitors to our website. IP addresses may or may not be considered personally identifiable information, depending on the practices of the user's ISP. This information is used for server load analysis, debugging and security purposes. Only select Winston-Salem State University OIT personnel have access to this information.
    11. E-commerce

      Several areas of our website feature web forms for the purpose of facilitating financial transactions. It is university standard that information you input in these forms is used only for the purposes described in that transaction unless an additional use is specifically stated otherwise.
    12. Public forums

      We may offer chat rooms, blogs, message boards, bulletin boards, or similar public forums where you and other users of our website can communicate. The protections described in this Privacy Statement Standard do not apply when you provide information (including personal information) in connection with your use of these public forums. We may use personally identifiable and non-personal information about you to identify you with a posting in a public forum. Any information you share in a public forum is public information and may be seen or collected by anyone, including third parties that do not adhere to our Privacy Statement Standard. We are not responsible for events arising from the distribution of any information you choose to post or share through our website publicly.
    13. Site Disclaimer

      Notwithstanding any language to the contrary, nothing contained herein constitutes nor is intended to constitute an offer, inducement, promise, or contract of any kind. The data contained herein is for informational purposes only and is not represented to be error free. Winston-Salem State University, its units, employees, and agents shall not be liable for improper or incorrect use of information obtained through the use of WSSU websites. Any links to non-WSSU owned sites are provided as a courtesy. They are not intended to nor do they constitute an endorsement by Winston-Salem State University.
  4. Questions and concerns

    If you have any questions or concerns about this privacy statement, you should contact us by email at web-support-services@wssu.edu or security@wssu.edu.