Data stewardship is important to us at Recidiviz, especially when it comes to the privacy of our users and individuals who are described in data.
We’re guided by several key principles:
- We are conscientious about the information we ask you to provide, and the personal information that we collect about you through the operation of our services.
- We are also mindful that the criminal justice system is made up of millions of individual lives, and that the data that we’re entrusted with includes private and sensitive information about each of the individuals in it.
- We only store personal information for as long as we have a reason to keep it.
- We aim for full transparency on how we gather, use, and share your personal information.
Who We Are and What This Policy Covers
We are a group of technology folks that develop common, open source technical infrastructure to help the criminal justice system end mass incarceration and focus on iteration towards better outcomes (both for the public and the individuals in the system). We believe that data and technology can help translate our values as a society into a more equitable, open, and equitable criminal justice system. We also believe that technology is most effective when it’s free for anyone to inspect and build upon, and so the vast majority of our work is available under the General Public License (“GPL”). Unlike most other services, because our GPL code is public, you can actually download and take a look at that code to see how it works.
- Our websites (including recidiviz.org);
- Our mobile applications and mobile websites;
- Our other Recidiviz products, services, and features that are available on or through our websites (for example, our corrections leadership dashboards, tools for parole and probation officers, e-mail reports and alerts, Covid-19 projection model for jails and prisons, public criminal justice dashboards, policy modeling and related memos, downloadable tools, and more); and
- Other users’ websites that use our Services, while you are logged in to your account with us.
Creative Commons Sharealike License
Information We Collect
We only collect information about you if we have a reason to do so — for example, to provide our Services, to communicate with you, or to make our Services better. We collect this information from three sources: if and when you provide information to us, automatically through operating our Services, and from outside sources. Let’s go over the information that we collect.
Information You Provide to Us
It’s probably no surprise that we collect information that you provide to us directly. Here are some examples:
- Basic account information: We ask for basic information from you in order to set up your account. For example, we require individuals who sign up for a Recidiviz.org account to provide an email address and password, along with a name — and that’s it. You may provide us with more information in the course of using a product — like your location, timezone, company or state employer, role, and other information — but we don’t require that information to create a Recidiviz.org account.
- Content information: You might provide us with information about you or your work in draft and published content (a comment that includes information about you or your work, or any data, media, or files you upload).
- Credentials: Depending on the Services you use, you may provide us with credentials for other systems or services (like SSH, FTP, and SFTP username and password). You might provide us with this information to set up automated integration, or to allow us to troubleshoot problems more quickly.
- Communications with us: You may also provide us with information when you respond to surveys, communicate with our team about a support question, provide feedback in user experience interviews or through support channels, or sign up for alerts or a newsletters. When you communicate with us via form, email, phone, Recidiviz.org comment, video conference, or otherwise, we may store a copy of our communications (including any call recordings as permitted by applicable law).
Information We Collect Automatically
We also collect some information automatically:
- Log information: Like most online service providers, we collect information that web browsers, mobile devices, and servers typically make available, including the browser type, IP address, unique device identifiers, language preference, referring site, the date and time of access, operating system, and mobile network information. We collect log information when you use our Services — for example, when you check the leadership dashboard for your Department of Corrections.
- Usage information: We collect information about your usage of our Services. For example, we collect information about the actions that users perform on our products and sites — in other words, who did what and when (e.g., [Recidiviz username] viewed “[State] Leadership Dashboard” at [time/date]). We also collect information about what happens when you use our Services (e.g., page views, support document searches, features enabled for your dashboard, interactions with our tools and other parts of our Services) along with information about your device (e.g., screen size, name of cellular network, and mobile device manufacturer). We use this information to, for example, provide our Services to you, get insights on how people use our Services so we can make our Services better, and understand and make predictions about user retention.
- Location information: We may determine the approximate location of your device from your IP address. We collect and use this information to, for example, calculate how many people visit our Services from certain geographic regions. We may also collect information about your precise location via our mobile apps if you allow us to do so through your mobile device operating system’s permissions.
- Interactions with other users: We collect some information about your interactions with other users while you are logged in to your account with us, such as when you share a Covid-19 projection with a colleague, so that we can, for example, make better recommendations in your sharing dialog in the future.
Information We Collect from Other Sources
We may also get information about you from other sources. For example, if you create or log in to your Recidiviz.org account using a government e-mail address, we may receive information from data integrations with your employer or other government entities (e.g., your email address, role, and other basic profile information). The information we receive may depend on which services you use or authorize and what options are available. Third-party services may also give us information, like in the case of third-party collections of arrest information which include details of the arresting officer. We use this information for several purposes, such as providing the Services and tailoring your experience.
How and Why We Use Information
Purposes for Using Information
We use information about you for the purposes listed below:
- To provide our Services. For example, to set up and maintain your account, provide customer service, authenticate and authorize data access, facilitate your requests to share access, and verify user information.
- To ensure quality, maintain safety, and improve our Services. For example, by providing automatic updates and new versions of our Services. Or, for example, by monitoring and analyzing how users interact with our Services so we can create new features that we think our users will find useful and that will help them to perform their work more equitably or effectively, or to make our Services easier to use.
- To grow awareness of our Services and measure, gauge, and improve the effectiveness of our outreach. For example, by targeting messages to groups of our users (like those who have a particular role in the same state, or have been users for a certain length of time), advertising our Services, analyzing the results of our outreach (like how many people started using Services after receiving a message), and understanding and forecasting user retention.
- To protect our Services, our users, and the public. For example, by detecting security incidents; detecting and protecting against malicious, deceptive, fraudulent, or illegal activity; fighting spam; complying with our legal obligations; and protecting the rights and property of Recidiviz and others, which may result in us, for example, declining access from a particular computer or terminating Services.
- To fix problems with our Services. For example, by monitoring, debugging, repairing, and preventing issues.
- To customize the user experience. For example, to personalize your experience by serving you relevant notifications and alerts from our Services, recommending additional tools or features, and providing content more directly relevant to your role, employer, or location.
- To communicate with you. For example, by emailing you to ask for your feedback, share tips for getting the most out of our products, or keep you up to date on Recidiviz. If you don’t want to hear from us, you can opt out of marketing communications at any time. (If you opt out, we’ll still send you important updates relating to your account.)
Legal Bases for Collecting and Using Information
A note here for those in the European Union about our legal grounds for processing information about you under EU data protection laws. Recidiviz does not provide services intended for international users at this time, and our data protection guidelines enforce that data is kept within the borders of the United States. Our services are not currently set up to ensure GDPR compliance, and you should contact us with questions about use of a particular tool or service outside of the US.
Our use of your information is based on the grounds that: (1) The use is necessary in order to fulfill our commitments to you under the applicable terms of service or other agreements with you or is necessary to administer your account — for example, in order to enable access to our website on your device or charge you for a paid plan; or (2) The use is necessary for compliance with a legal obligation; or (3) The use is necessary in order to protect your vital interests or those of another person; or (4) We have a legitimate interest in using your information — for example, to provide and update our Services; to improve our Services so that we can offer you an even better user experience; to safeguard our Services; to communicate with you; to measure, gauge, and improve the effectiveness of our advertising; and to understand our user retention and attrition; to monitor and prevent any problems with our Services; and to personalize your experience; or (5) You have given us your consent.
How We Share Information
We share information about you in very limited circumstances, and with appropriate safeguards on your privacy. These are spelled out below:
- Third-party vendors: We may share information about you with third-party vendors who need the information in order to provide their services to us, or to provide their services to you. This includes vendors that help us provide our Services to you (like authentication and authorization systems, cloud storage services, postal and email delivery services that help us stay in touch with you, customer chat and email support services that help us communicate with you, registrars, registries, and others); those that help us understand and enhance our Services (like analytics providers); those that make tools to help us run our operations (like programs that help us with task management, scheduling, word processing, email and other communications, and collaboration among our teams); other third-party tools that help us manage operations; and companies that make other services available within our services, who may need information about you in order to, for example, provide technical or other support services to you. We require vendors to agree to privacy commitments in order to share information with them.
- Legal and regulatory requirements: We may disclose information about you in response to a subpoena, court order, or other governmental request.
- To protect rights, property, and others: We may disclose information about you when we believe in good faith that disclosure is reasonably necessary to protect the property or rights of Recidiviz, third parties, or the public at large. For example, if we have a good faith belief that there is an imminent danger of death or serious physical injury, we may disclose information related to the emergency without delay.
- With your consent: We may share and disclose information with your consent or at your direction. For example, we may share your information with third parties when you authorize us to do so.
- Aggregated or de-identified information: We may share information that has been aggregated or de-identified, so that it can no longer reasonably be used to identify you. For instance, we may publish aggregate statistics about the use of our Services.
- Published support requests: If you send us a request for assistance (for example, via a support email or one of our other feedback mechanisms), we reserve the right to publish that request in order to clarify or respond to your request, or to help us support other users.
We do not sell our users' data. We aren't a data broker, we don't sell your personal information to data brokers, and we don't sell your information to other companies that want to spam you with marketing emails. We do not show or target advertisements for any services other than those provided by Recidiviz and in limited circumstances Recidiviz partners.
Some Services may enable you to share access to your data with other users (for example, the Covid-19 projection model makes it possible to develop different projection scenarios, and then share those scenarios with other users).
We may share limited profile information about you to other users to facilitate the sharing of data or information that you have created or upload to the system. For example, sharing dialogs may show your full name for users who have data shared with your account e-mail, without your taking any action, to help them know and be certain of who their information has been shared with.
How Long We Keep Information
We generally discard information about you when it’s no longer needed for the purposes for which we collect and use it — described in the section above on How and Why We Use Information — and we’re not legally required to keep it. For example, we keep the web server logs that record information about a visitor to one of Recidiviz websites, like the visitor’s IP address, browser type, and operating system, for approximately three years to maintain compliance for handling sensitive data. We retain the logs for this period of time in order to, among other things, analyze traffic to Recidiviz’s websites and investigate issues if something goes wrong on one of our websites. As another example, when you delete data from a web- or mobile-based Recidiviz tool, the deleted content may remain on our backups and caches until purged.
While no online service is 100% secure, we work very hard to protect information about you against unauthorized access, use, alteration, or destruction, and take reasonable measures to do so. We monitor our Services for potential vulnerabilities and attacks.
You have several choices available when it comes to information about you:
- Limit the information that you provide: If you have an account with us, you can choose not to provide the optional account information, profile information, etc. Please keep in mind that if you do not provide this information, certain features of our Services may not be accessible.
- Limit access to information on your mobile device: Your mobile device operating system should provide you with the option to discontinue our ability to collect stored information or location information via our mobile apps. If you choose to limit this, you may not be able to use certain features.
- Opt out of marketing communications: You may opt out of receiving promotional communications from us. Just follow the instructions in those communications or let us know. If you opt out of promotional communications, we may still send you other communications, like those about your account and legal notices. If you’re not sure how to opt out of certain communications, scroll down to “How to Reach Us” and drop us a line. We’ll be happy to route you to the right place.
- Set your browser to reject cookies: At this time, Recidiviz does not respond to “do not track” signals across all of our Services. However, you can usually choose to set your browser to remove or reject browser cookies before using Recidiviz’s websites, with the drawback that certain features of Recidiviz websites may not function properly without the aid of cookies.
- Close your account: While we’d be very sad to see you go, you can close your account if you no longer want to use our Services. Please keep in mind that we may continue to retain your information after closing your account, as described in How Long We Keep Information above — for example, when that information is reasonably needed to comply with (or demonstrate our compliance with) legal obligations such as law enforcement requests, or reasonably needed for our legitimate business interests. To close your account, scroll down to “How to Reach Us” to find our contact information and let us know.
If you are located in certain parts of the world, including California and countries that fall under the scope of the European General Data Protection Regulation (aka the “GDPR”), you may have certain rights regarding your personal information, like the right to request access to or deletion of your data.
European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
If you are located in a country that falls under the scope of the GDPR, data protection laws give you certain rights with respect to your personal data, subject to any exemptions provided by the law, including the rights to:
- Request access to your personal data;
- Request correction or deletion of your personal data;
- Object to our use and processing of your personal data;
- Request that we limit our use and processing of your personal data; and
- Request portability of your personal data.
You also have the right to make a complaint to a government supervisory authority.
Contacting Us About These Rights
You can usually access, correct, or delete your personal data using your account settings and tools that we offer, but if you aren’t able to or you’d like to contact us about one of the other rights, scroll down to “How to Reach Us” to, well, find out how to reach us. When you contact us about one of your rights under this section, we’ll need to verify that you are the right person before we disclose or delete anything. For example, if you are a user, we will need you to contact us from the email address associated with your account. You can also designate an authorized agent to make a request on your behalf by giving us written authorization. We may still require you to verify your identity with us.
How to Reach Us
Other Things You Should Know (Keep Reading!)
Information and Data Location
Most data related to Recidiviz Services is based on servers in the United States.
Third-Party Software and Services
- August 20, 2020: Removal of some inherited commercial terms not applicable to nonprofit organizations.