Your records are strictly confidential. At the Corry Public Library, we go the extra step to ensure that your records remain your business and no one else’s.
Pennsylvania law mandates the confidentiality of all records containing personally identifiable information relating to an individual’s use of any library and its materials, facilities, and services. Confidentiality includes, but is not limited to, circulation of library books, periodicals and other materials, database searches, interlibrary loan transactions, reference requests, and use of audiovisual materials. We will not sell or lease confidential information to outside parties and will not disclose information unless required to do so by law. Library records containing personally identifiable information will not be made available to anyone except “pursuant to subpoena, court order or where otherwise required by statute.” We authorize only the Library Director (or her/his designee) to receive or comply with requests from law enforcement officers. We may confer with legal counsel before determining the proper response.
If you forget your library card, you can check out and retrieve account information with a photo ID. This process helps us recognize you and avoids checkout discrepancies.
Your hold items will check out only to your card. If you want a friend or family member to pick up your hold items, be sure to give him or her your card.
We give your hold/reserve information only to you. Specific details on your hold items will not be given to your answering machine, roommate, or anyone else. You may call the library or check My Account to get the title if you miss our call.
Someone else may pay your fines, but specific information will not be given to them. If someone returns or renews an overdue item for you, he or she may pay the fine, but your account history will not be disclosed.
Children’s records are equally protected. We ask parents to use their child’s library card when checking out, renewing or paying fines on items for their child. Children age 13 and over are entitled to the privacy rights of adults. Information regarding a Teen card can only be accessed by the teen or with the teen’s permission. (Teen must be present or have designated their parent as a linked account).
Parents are responsible not only for the choices their minor children make concerning the selection of materials and the use of library facilities and resources but also for communicating with their children about those choices. Library staff will not breach a child’s confidentiality by giving out information readily available to the parent from the child directly.
Your records are available to you. Although your library account is protected from others, you can access information about it in a variety of ways:
- Online using My Account
- By calling any library in Erie County during normal business hours
Safeguard your card. Report any loss or theft of your card to the Library immediately.
Information We Collect
The types of personal information we collect are:
- Telephone numbers
- Email addresses
- Date of birth
- Library barcode number
- Materials currently checked out or requested, including interlibrary loans
- Overdue materials (until returned)
- Unpaid fines (until paid)
In order to protect your personal information, our automated consortium, PLEC, employs the following policies and procedures to safeguard the personally identifiable information of the patrons of the member libraries in internal operations.
Once a book is returned and charges (if any) are resolved, the link between a patron barcode and the title is automatically excised. However, as of January 3, 2017, patrons can choose to have their circulation records retained in the catalog system. These records can only be viewed by the patron through their My Account. If they do not affirmatively choose to do so, the records will not be kept.
At the library, we require that all public Internet workstations be shut down nightly or rebooted in the morning. Software installed on those machines will delete any cache of sites visited by patrons. It also removes any viruses that may have attacked that machine during the day. The library reserves the right to use logging software to monitor use of library computers.
My Account and Passwords
All passwords used to access the library catalog are private. Library staff can reset a password for you but cannot access your current password. Passwords and accounts cannot be shared between people as they are tied to individual library card numbers and name.
Links to Other Sites:
Our website contains links to other sites not maintained by the Library. We are not responsible for the privacy practices of any other sites you may visit. We encourage you to become familiar with privacy practices and be mindful of privacy.
You have the option of providing us with your email address for the purpose of notifying you about your library account/library activities. You may request that we remove your email address from your account or from the link on the bottom of the library newsletter at any time.
When you access our catalog and databases from home, we will require the barcode number from your library card for authentication purposes. Providers of licensed databases do not have access to our records containing personal information. Our contract with vendors stipulates that any information that could be linked to your barcode is to be discarded as soon as you log off.
If users choose not to accept the cookies generated by such third party database applications, they will not be able to use some of those services online; use of the remainder of the Library website will not be affected. Be assured that cookies, by themselves, cannot be used to reveal or discover the identity of the individual user nor are they collected or stored on any library server. Acceptance of any third party database cookie on this site will not compromise patron anonymity while using our website.
The privacy and safety of children is very important to us. Personal information collected by the Library is not shared with any other agency or organization. Due to the ease with which children can be induced to divulge personal information on the Internet, we urge parents to supervise their children’s use of the Internet at home as well as in the Library. Parents should also be aware that the Library does employ filtering software (TPM or Technology Protective Measure,) in compliance with CIPA, and the Pennsylvania Child Internet Protection Act, but no software is 100% effective.
eBooks for Kindle:
Library as Public Space and Privacy
The library is a public space and the library has no control over other patrons viewing of your activity or discussion of any activity later.
Staff are restricted from discussing your presence in the library and your activities here including but not limited to: materials checked out, computer use, copies, faxes, reference questions, and use of library facilities.
Staff are required to distinguish between personal convictions and professional duties and not to allow their personal beliefs to interfere with fair representation of the aims of our institution or the provision of access to their information resources.
The Corry Public Library does employ cameras for surveillance. When library personnel believe that surveillance cameras have recorded evidence of a crime, those images are preserved turned over to the library director or the library’s legal counsel, who can then turn over the images to law enforcement in accordance with the law. Such images may be protected by state library confidentiality laws that prohibit the disclosure of information about a person’s use of library materials without a court order.
As a legal matter, we may voluntarily disclose surveillance camera images to law enforcement if the images do not reveal any person’s use of specific library materials or resources. The decision to disclose surveillance camera images should be made by the library’s director in consultation with the library’s legal counsel. When state law requires the police to obtain a court order before viewing or copying protected library records, the library can extend cooperation by identifying relevant records and preserving those records until a court order is served on the library.
Illegal activity prohibited and not protected
Patrons may conduct only legal activity while using library resources and services. Nothing in this policy prevents the library from exercising its right to enforce its Code of Conduct, protect its facilities, network, and equipment from harm, or prevent the use of library facilities and equipment for illegal purposes. The library can electronically log activity to monitor its public computers and external access to its network and reserves the right to review such logs when a violation of law or library policy is suspected. Staff is authorized to take immediate action to protect the security of library patrons, staff, facilities, computers, and the network. This includes contacting law enforcement authorities and providing information that may identify the individual(s) suspected of a violation.
If you have a question, concern, or complaint about our handling of your personally identifiable information or this policy you may file written comments with the Library Director. We will respond in a timely manner and may conduct an investigation or review of practices and procedures. We conduct such reviews regularly to ensure compliance with the principles outlined in this policy.
Adopted by the Corry Public Library Board of Trustees May 10, 2017.