FAA Privacy and Website Policy
We respect your right to privacy and will protect it when you visit our website.
- What We Collect Automatically
- Other Information We May Collect
- Why We Collect Information
- Sharing Your Information
- Information Collected from Interactive Forms
- Information Practices for Children (COPPA)
- Securing Your Information
- Your Rights Under the Privacy Act of 1974
- Social Media and Your Comments
- Other Privacy Practices
What We Collect Automatically
We automatically collect information about your visit that does not personally identify you. We collect the computer, browser, the name of the domain of your Internet Service Provider (ISP), and the Internet Protocol (IP) address of the website from which you linked to FAA.gov. We also collect the date, time, and the pages you visit. Collecting this information helps us design the site to suit your needs. In the event of a known security or virus threat, we may collect information on the web content that you view.
Other Information We May Collect
When you visit our website, we may request and collect the following categories of personal information from you:
- Contact information
- License numbers or other official document information to verify your identity
- Aviation-related background, such as whether you are a flight instructor or mechanic
Why We Collect Information
Our principal purpose for collecting personal information online is to provide you with what you need and want, address security and virus concerns, and to ease the use of our website.
We will only use your information for the purposes you intended, to address security or virus threats, or for the purposes required under the law. See Choices on How We Use the Information You Provide.
We collect information to:
- Respond to your complaints
- Reply to your "feedback comments"
- Manage your access to restricted areas of the website
- Fulfill requests for reports and other similar information
- Register you for a member account
- Issue certificates (licenses)
Sharing Your Information
We may share personally identifiable information you provide to us online with representatives within the Department of Transportation's Operating Administrations and related entities, other federal government agencies, or other named representatives as needed to speed your request or transaction. In a government-wide effort to combat security and virus threats, we may share some information we collect automatically, such as IP address, with other federal government agencies.
Also, the law may require us to share collected information with authorized law enforcement, homeland security, and national security activities. See the Privacy Act of 1974.
Choices on How We Use the Information You Provide
Throughout our website, we will let you know whether the information we ask you to provide is voluntary or required. By providing personally identifiable information, you grant us consent to use this information, but only for the primary reason you are giving it. We will ask you to grant us consent before using your voluntarily provided information for any secondary purposes, other than those required under the law.
Information Collected from Interactive Forms
On some of our webpages we offer interactive forms that let you voluntarily submit personal information (such as your email address, name, or organization). This may occur when you are registering for conferences, workshops, or training sessions offered by FAA, ordering publications from FAA, or submitting comments to various web discussion forums. In those cases, we only use your information for the expressed purposes for which it is intended. Your information is not made available to any third party. However, if you supply your name, email address, or other personal information when you submit a comment to an FAA web discussion forum, we may post that information along with your comment.
Information Practices for Children (COPPA)
We have information for children on our education web pages. We do not intentionally collect information from children under the age of 13. If in the future we choose to collect personal information from children, we will comply with the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).
A cookie is a small text file stored on your computer that makes it easy for you to move around a website without continually re-entering your name, password, or preferences, for example.
FAA uses session and persistent cookies on our website to collect information about your activity on FAA.gov. For example, a session cookie is used to collect the number of clicks on a link on a FAA.gov page.
A session cookie is stored on your computer only during your visit to FAA.gov. After you turn off your computer or close your browser, the cookie disappears from your computer.
In contrast, a persistent cookie is stored on your computer and is re-used each time you visit FAA.gov. After you turn off your computer or close your browser, the cookie is kept on your machine for the next time you visit FAA.gov.
If you want to remove persistent cookies from your machine, you can use your browser to delete all persistent cookies. For example, in Internet Explorer, you delete cookies via Tools > Internet Options. Keep in mind that this removes all cookies from your machine, even those created by other websites. Therefore, it may affect your experience on other websites.
If you want to opt-out of the use of Web measurement and cookie technologies, see Web Measurement and Customization Opt-Out.
Securing Your Information
Properly securing the information we collect online is a primary commitment. To help us do this, we take the following steps:
- Employ internal access controls to ensure the only people who see your information are those with a need to do so to perform their official duties
- Train relevant personnel on our privacy and security measures to know requirements for compliance
- Secure the areas where we hold hard copies of information we collect online
- Perform regular backups of the information we collect online to insure against loss
- Use technical controls to secure the information we collect online including but not limited to:
- Secure Socket Layer (SSL)
- Password protections
- We periodically test our security procedures to ensure personnel and technical compliance
- We employ external access safeguards to identify and prevent unauthorized tries of outsiders to hack into, or cause harm to, the information in our systems
Tampering with FAA's website is against the law. Depending on the offense, it is punishable under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986 and the National Information Infrastructure Protection Act.
Your Rights Under the Privacy Act of 1974
The Privacy Act of 1974 protects the personal information the federal government keeps on you in systems of records (SOR). Information an agency controls recovered by name or other personal identifier. The Privacy Act regulates how the government can disclose, share, provide access to, and keep the personal information that it collects. The Privacy Act does not cover all information collected online.
The Act's major terms require agencies to:
- Publish a Privacy Act Notice in the Federal Register explaining the existence, character, and uses of a new or revised SOR.
- Keep information about you accurate, relevant, timely, and complete to assure fairness in dealing with you.
- Allow you to, on request, access and review your information held in an SOR and request amendment of the information if you disagree with it.
When FAA collects information from you online that is subject to the Privacy Act (information kept in an SOR), we will provide a Privacy Act Statement specific to that collected information. This Privacy Act Statement tells you:
- The authority for and the purpose and use of the information collected subject to the Privacy Act
- Whether providing the information is voluntary or mandatory
- The effects on you if you do not provide any or all requested information
View our Privacy Act Notices.
Social Media and Your Comments
FAA uses third-party services such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube to communicate and interact with the public. These services are controlled and operated by third parties, and are not government websites or applications. By interacting with FAA through these third-party services, you may be providing non-government third parties access to your personal information which can be used to distinguish or trace your identity. Any information collected by a third-party service is subject to the privacy policies of the third-party service provider.
Generally, FAA does not collect, disseminate, or maintain any personally identifiable information (PII) about you maintained by third party sites. However, you should be aware that FAA may read, review, or rely upon information that you make publicly available on these services (for example, comments made on the FAA's Facebook page), as authorized or required by law.
Below is the current list of official FAA social media accounts.
Our Privacy Practices
If you have comments, concerns, or need more information on our privacy practices, please contact our Privacy Division at Privacy@faa.gov or 888-PRIVAC1. Also, DOT has conducted a Privacy Impact Assessment on some systems.
View our DOT Privacy Impact Assessments.