The Washington State Patrol’s (WSP) external website’s purpose is to connect users with the agency by providing: easy to use services, agency information, public safety messages and other information about the agency.
The WSP external website is not intended to be an open public forum but is considered a limited public forum
The WSP is committed to providing accessible services to users. The agency’s external website will follow the current Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (WCAG). Many of the checkpoints have been incorporated into Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act, which establishes accessibility standards for federal agencies.
The WSP external website will be compatible with multiple types of browsers and devices in order to provide the ability to deliver web-based information and services to the widest possible audience.
• Responsive and adaptive Web design will be used to present content across a full range of devices as consistently as possible
• Follow best practices for delivering content via web, mobile or native mobile app
• Provide links for browser and plug-in updates if they are used or required on the site
• Periodically test various devices, browsers and operating systems to ensure compatibility
Public confidence and trust in government is dependent upon the protection of sensitive, personal information collected by government agencies. Privacy and security of personal information is a legal obligation and all personal data collected through any agency website must comply with the WSP Privacy Notice.
SECTION A. — Introduction
Thank you for visiting a Washington State Patrol website. This Privacy Notice addresses collection, use, security, and access to information that may be obtained through use of a Washington State Patrol website. It also describes several state and federal laws that apply to personally identifiable information (PII) that you might provide in the course of navigating this site. Sections are listed to the right for quick navigation.
SECTION B. — Information Collected and How it is Used
Browsing Information Collected:
When you browse this website, we may gather and store certain information about your visit. We automatically collect and store the following information about your visit:
• The Internet domain and network address you use to access our site
• The type of web browser and operating system you are using
• The date and time of your visit
• The pages you visit on this website
• The last website you visited before coming to ours
• Other web traffic statistics such as Google Analytics
The information is used by this agency to improve the content of our web services and to help us understand how people are using our services.
SECTION C. — Personal Information and Choice
You may choose whether to provide personal information on-line.
“Personal information” is information about a natural person that is readily identifiable to that specific individual. Personal information includes such things as an individual’s name, address, and phone number, but does not include the user’s domain name or IP address.
We collect no personal information about you unless you voluntarily provide it by sending us e-mail, participating in a survey, or completing an on-line form. You may choose not to contact us by e-mail, participate in a survey, or provide any personal information using an on-line form. Your choice to not participate in these activities will not impair your ability to browse this website and read or download any information provided on the site.
Volunteered Information Collected:
If during your visit to our website you participate in a survey, send us an email, or perform some other transaction online, the following additional information may be collected:
• Your email address and contents of the email
• Information volunteered in response to a survey
• Information volunteered through an online form for any other purpose
The information collected is not limited to text characters and may include audio, video, and graphic information formats you send us. We will not usually ask for, or collect, this kind of information from the general public through this website. Emails you send to us may be used to respond to issues and to further improve our services. We may forward your email to another agency or a vendor for appropriate action.
The records retention schedules published by the State Archives requires us to keep this information only so long as it is useful, and then destroy it; these schedules change from time to time.
Our Washington Access to Criminal History (WATCH) service requires further personal information for security and payment purposes. You must provide personal information to use the WATCH service. The information enables an account and/or payment. If you choose not to provide this information, we will be unable to provide criminal history information, and you will have to request the criminal history information in person or by mail with payment made by check.
If personal information is requested on the website or volunteered by the user, state law and the federal Privacy Act of 1974 may protect it. However, this information is a public record and may be subject to public inspection and copying if not protected by federal or state law.
The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) governs information gathering online from or about children under the age of 13. We are especially concerned about protecting children’s privacy. Under COPPA, a website must get parental permission before collecting personally identifiable information about a child under the age of 13.
SECTION D. — Public Access to Information
In the State of Washington, laws exist to ensure that government is open and that the public has a right to access appropriate records and information possessed by state government. At the same time, there are exceptions to the public’s right to access public records that serve various needs including the privacy of individuals. Exceptions are provided by both state and federal laws.
As a public agency, all our information is governed by laws such as Washington’s Public Records Act RCW 42.56 (link is external). Information you send us may become a public record, and it may be subject to public inspection and copying if not otherwise protected by federal or state law.
Information collected through use of this site may be public information and subject to inspection and copying by members of the public. For example, the Public Records Act states that:
Each agency, in accordance with published rules, shall make available for public inspection and copying all public records, unless the record falls within the specific exemptions of subsection (6) of this section RCW 42.56.070(6) Chapter 42.56 RCW, or other statute which exempts or prohibits disclosure of specific information or records.
To the extent required to prevent an unreasonable invasion of personal privacy interests protected by Chapter 42.56 RCW , an agency shall delete identifying details in a manner consistent with Chapter 42.56 RCW when it makes available or publishes any public record; however, in each case, the justification for the deletion shall be explained fully in writing.
SECTION E. — Your Right to Review and Correct Personally Identifiable Information
State law requires agencies that collect personally identifiable information to provide “procedures for correcting inaccurate information, including establishing mechanisms for individuals to review information about them and recommend changes in information they believe to be inaccurate.” (RCW 43.105.365)
You can access any personally identifiable information we collect about you by using the information in the Contact Information section at the end of this Policy. We will do our best to correct factual errors in your personally identifiable information if you send us a written request that clearly shows the error. We will take reasonable steps to verify your identity before granting access or making corrections.
SECTION F. — Credit Card Transactions
For certain transactions, a credit or debit card number may be required for payment. The number is validated and discarded by State Patrol systems. It is not retained in any Washington State Patrol data base. A transaction number is kept for historical purposes.
Credit and debit card numbers, electronic check numbers, card expiration dates, and other financial account numbers are exempt from public disclosure under RCW 42.56.230
SECTION G. — Cookies
To better serve our users, we use a variety of indicators to customize your browsing experience with this website, including “cookies.” If you use your browser settings opt to block all cookies in the settings to your web browser (including essential cookies), this could affect the availability and functionality of this website. We only have control over indicators we provide and not over third party tools or other technologies deployed on this website that may be created by using embedded third party applications.
Cookies created on your computer by using this website do not contain personally identifying information and do not compromise your privacy or security. We use the cookie feature only to store a randomly generated identifying tag on your computer.
Most browser software can notify you before a website places a cookie on your computer. Some browsers will permit you to block the creation of cookie files altogether or provide the option of individually accepting or rejecting a cookie request. You may also want to periodically check and delete cookie files in the manner suitable for the browser you are using. Instructions to enable these features may be found in your browser’s Help menu.
SECTION H. — Security
This Agency has taken steps to safeguard the integrity of its data and prevent unauthorized access to information maintained by us. These measures are designed and intended to prevent corruption of data, block unknown or unauthorized access to our systems and information, and to provide reasonable protection of information in our possession.
This information should not be construed in any way as giving business, legal, or other advice, or warranting as fail proof the security of information provided via State Patrol web sites.
SECTION I. — Disclaimer
Reference in this website to any specific commercial products, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public and does not constitute endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the State of Washington, this agency, or its officers, employees or agents.
This site contains text, artwork, photos or other content that is copyrighted by others and is being used with permission of the copyright holder.
SECTION J. — Glossary
A network address is assigned to your computer or mobile device whenever you are using the Internet. Network addresses can be IP address like this: 192.168.0.11 or like this: fc00:0:0:0:0:0:0:0:/7 or Ethernet addresses like this 00:00:00:FF:EE:11.
Cookies are small data files stored on your hard drive or in your device memory when you visit a website. Cookies and similar technologies are widely used by websites to make them work more efficiently, as well as to provide information to the website operator about how users are using their website. Most browsers allow you to block cookies by adjusting the “settings,” “preferences” or “internet options.”
To find out more about cookies, including how to see what cookies have been set and how to manage and delete them, please refer to your browser ‘help’ section, visit the Federal Trade Commission’s explanation on its website, or the Washington State privacy resources at Privacy.wa.gov.
Washington State Patrol
PO Box 42600
Olympia WA 98504-2600
If you have any questions or concerns about the accuracy of your personal information or that it is being used for a purpose other than what was intended when submitted, please contact the following:
For questions about criminal history records data (WATCH), contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
For questions about the website content: GMRinfo@was.wa.gov
For questions about technical issues with the website: email@example.com