1. Introduction

The Queens Borough Public Library is committed to protecting the privacy of our staff, donors, customers, and other contacts. The Library’s privacy policy is clear:  The Library will not collect personal information about you when you visit our website or register for a program or a library card, unless you choose to provide that information to us. 

Any information you choose to share will only be used to provide or improve Library services.  The Library requests the minimum amount of information needed to deliver the Library service you are using, and does its best to remove such information at the earliest possible opportunity.

This Privacy Policy complies fully with all applicable laws related to collection, storage, use, disclosure, and protection of personal information.

  1. How the Library Collects and Uses Information from Library Patrons
    1. Information Collected and Stored Automatically

During your visit as you browse through the web site, read pages, or download information, certain information will be automatically gathered and stored about your visit but not about you. This information does not identify you personally. The Library automatically collects and stores only the following information about the visit:

  1. The Internet domain (for example, "" if a private Internet access account, or "" if connected from a university) and IP address (an IP address is a number that is automatically assigned to a computer whenever it is surfing the Web) from which access to our web site is gained;
  2. The type of browser and operating system used to access the Library’s site;
  3. The date and time of access to the Library’s site; 
  4. The pages visited and for how long; and 
  5. The address of the website from which the initial visit to was launched, if any.

The Library uses this information to help the Library make our site more useful to visitors and to learn about the number of visitors to our site and the types of technology our visitors use.  The data that is collected is not connected to your personal information or identity.

    1. Customer Circulation Records

The Library does not use a paper process to collect and track customer circulation records.  It is done electronically.  The Library maintains information provided by our customers from the registration form they complete when they register for a library card.  When an item is checked out, that item is then tied to that customer’s record in the library’s system.  At the moment that library material is returned to the library, the link between the customer and the material is broken—that is, the Library’s system ceases to retain information on what materials were taken out by whom the moment the item is returned.

The Library’s computer system has a logger file for technical purposes that logs every transaction in the system to ensure that if there is a data corruption or a system problem, the Library can rebuild the data from the logger file.  All of that data is purged through the Library’s data processing back up process on a 60-day cycle. 

    1. Use of Computer Workstations and Connected Devices

Sign-up lists are maintained on paper locally to manage access to computer workstations.  Those lists are shredded at the end of each day.  Sign-up lists are only necessary for customer access to computer labs and in libraries where there is routinely more volume of people needing to access a workstation than workstations available, and this is decided on a local branch level.  There is no electronic tracking of workstation use that would enable the library to determine who that customer is or what they did on a library computer after the customer logs off.  Any records of browsing history and activities are removed when you log out.  The next patron cannot see any of your information.  An anonymous log is created that includes only the computer terminal number, reservation time, and duration of the session. These anonymous reservation statistics remain in the system.

 The Library does not keep a record of your activities on any Library-provided laptop or other connected device (e.g., tablet, e-reader).  All connected devices you borrow from the Library have their history manually cleared by Library staff immediately after you return the device. 

    1. Registration for Virtual Programming and Online Inquiries

You may be asked to provide personal information, such as email address, in order to register for virtual class or program offered by the Library, or to make inquiries about Library programs and services.  Personally identifying information that you provide will be used only for such purposes as are described at the point of collection (e.g. program registration, response to inquiry).

If you provide contact information, the Library may contact you to clarify your comment or question, or to learn about your level of customer satisfaction with library services

    1. Aggregated Data

The information you have provided to the Library may be de- identified and aggregated with other information collected about other users, visitors, or donors. This de-identified and aggregated information cannot be used to reasonably identify you. The information the Library compiles like this helps to administer services, analyze usage, provide security, and count the number of new people using Library services. In addition, it helps to improve your user experience and allows the Library to promote its work to stakeholders and donors, and advocate for additional support for our services and resources.

  1. Fundraising and Your Information

The Library does not rent or sell your information, whether as a customer or as a donor.  As is customary in the non-profit world, the Library may, on occasion, use customer personal information to solicit new donors for the Library.  Also, the Library may share limited information of Library donors (e.g., name, postal address, donation amount) with cooperative databases that include other non-profit organizations, and such information may be used for marketing purposes by organizations in those databases.  Sharing this information is the most cost-effective way to offer the Library’s services to new users, provide program offerings, and attract new donors. 
If you donate to the Library and would prefer that your information not be shared, you may contact the Queens Public Library Foundation at

  1. Third Party Online Providers and Privacy Policies

The Library often uses third-party service providers and technologies to help deliver some of its programs and services—including digital classes and programs, streaming media content, digital collections and databases—as well as to process payments for charitable donations.  When using such third party-service providers, you will be directed to a link to that platform.  By following these links, you may be providing information (including, but not limited to, personal information such as your name, username, email address, and password) directly to a third party, to us, or to both. 
By using these services, you acknowledge and agree that the Library is not responsible for the privacy practices of third-party service providers, which may be different from the privacy practices described in the Library’s Privacy Policy.  We encourage you to become familiar with the privacy practices of the other sites you visit, a number of which can be accessed via hyperlink on the Library’s website.
The Library may partner with third-party services to provide educational content for children.  Parents and guardians should review those services’ privacy policies before permitting their children to use them. 

  1. Security

The Library secures library account information by placing it on the secure portion of the Library’s website.  That is why customers have to enter a unique User name and Password each time they want to access their account information.

For site security purposes and to ensure that this service remains available to all users, the Library uses software programs to monitor network traffic to identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information or otherwise cause damage. 

Unauthorized attempts to upload information or change information on this service are strictly prohibited and may be punishable under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986 and 18 U.S.C. Sec. 1001 and 1030. Except for the above purposes, no other attempts are made to identify individual users or their usage habits.

The Queens Library recognizes that law enforcement agencies and officers may occasionally believe that library records contain information which may be helpful to the investigation of criminal activity.  If there is a reasonable basis to believe such records are necessary to the progress of an investigation or prosecution, the American judicial system provides the mechanism for seeking release of such confidential records.  Library records will not be made available to any agency of state, federal or local government except pursuant to such process, order or subpoena as may be authorized under the authority of, and pursuant to, federal, state, or local law relating to civil, criminal, or administrative discovery procedures or legislative investigatory power.

Any credit card information you provide the Library (e.g., fees or services) is secure and used only for its intended purpose.

  1. Your Choice and Consent

New York State law provides unequivocal privacy protection for library records that contain personally identifiable information, including records related to circulation of library materials, database searches, reference requests, and use of computer workstations by Library cardholders.  These records shall be confidential and shall not be disclosed except that such records may be disclosed upon the request or consent of the user or pursuant to subpoena, court order, or where otherwise required by law.

You can review, and, when practical, update, change, or delete information you have provided to the Library by logging into your cardholder account on the Library website or by asking a Library staff member to assist you by phone at (718) 990-0700, email at, or by visiting a Library location and speaking to staff. Donors may contact the Queens Library Foundation at to review the information collected in connection with their donation. 
If you have questions about this Privacy Policy or any issues, concerns, or complaints about collection, processing, storage, disclosure, or protection of your personal information, please contact the Library at

  1. Revisions

The Library reserves the right to change or modify this privacy statement at any time.  If the Library revises this privacy statement, changes will be posted on the Library’s homepage.