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Privacy Policy

The Privacy Policy for the NCI SmokefreeTXT program applies to the VA SmokefreeVET program.

Your privacy is important to The National Cancer Institute (“NCI”). This Privacy Policy (“Policy”) will tell you what information NCI collects about you as well as whether and how we may share such information. This Policy pertains only to the use of information originating from (the “website”), and does not apply to any information that you may provide NCI by other means, such as by mail or telephone.

Do not hesitate to let us know if you have any questions vie e-mail: NCISmokefreeTeam@mail.nih.gov

1. Personal Data You Provide to NCI

Personally Identifiable Information (“PII”) means any information that can be used, either separately or together, to identify a specific individual such as your name, email address, home address, phone number, and date of birth. The website asks you to provide Personally Identifiable Information in various places throughout the website. As further described in Section 2 below, when you visit the website and interact with various pages contained within, NCI and third parties with whom NCI has contracted to provide services to NCI may collect information on your actions, including PII.

NCI utilizes appropriate industry standard procedures to safeguard the confidentiality of your personal information, such as firewall and Secure Socket Layer (SSL) encryption. However, no data transmitted over the Internet can be 100% secure. Consequently, while we make reasonable efforts to protect your personal information, we cannot guaranty the security of information that you provide to us.

2. Information Gathered By NCI and Its Third Party Service Providers

When you visit the website and interact with various pages contained within, NCI and third parties with whom NCI has contracted to provide services to NCI may collect information on your actions. This type of information is generally collected and/or stored from two sources: 1) IP Address & Browsing Metrics and 2) Provided PII.

IP Address and Browsing Metrics

Your IP address is a number assigned to your computer by your ISP (Internet Service Provider) to identify its location. NCI uses your IP address to help diagnose problems with the website and generally to administer the website. We also sometimes use IP addresses to communicate with members and subscribers and possibly even ban those members who are not complying with our Terms of Service.

The website web servers also automatically collect non-personal information such as the domain name, average time spent on the website, which pages were viewed and for how long, information searched for, access times, and other relevant statistics.

Provided PII

In addition to any PII collected or provided during a visit to the website, including during your registration for and other use of the SmokefreeVET Service, in the event that you activate the mobile phone options (also referred to as the SmokefreeVET Service) offered by NCI, NCI will collect and store your cellular phone number and related service provider information, thus enabling SMS text notifications to be delivered to your cellular phone. If you contact us by e-mail, we may keep a record of your contact information and correspondence, and may use your e-mail address, and any information that you provide to us, to respond to you.

3. Use of Your Information, Cookies, Access to Information & Disclosures As Required By Law

Use of Information

Except as expressly set forth in this Policy, NCI will not sell, rent, or lease or otherwise share or release your PII to any third party.

NCI may utilize the PII you provide for several purposes, such as to communicate with you and to give you a better experience when visiting the website by personalizing tools, content, services and messages.

NCI may also use the PII you provide to customize and personalize your browsing experience, deliver customer support, to enforce NCI’s agreements and policies, and to design new services. We may also use the PII you provide to contact and/or notify you about other NCI services.

Cookies

NCI utilizes "cookies" to enhance your visits to our websites. A cookie is a small amount of data that is stored on your computer's hard drive that enables NCI to personalize your online experience with the website. For example, a cookie may enable us to recognize your browser as a previous visitor, and thus save and remember any preferences that may have been set while you were previously browsing our websites.

You have control over cookies. Most browsers can be set to notify you if a cookie is being placed on your computer, and you can refuse, accept and erase cookies as well. Doing so, however, may affect your Internet experience.

Access to Information

Access to PII is restricted to individuals on a need to know basis in order to resolve problems with the service, provide customer support, and/or to address suspected violations of the Terms of Service. Each of these individuals is required to sign confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements and is instructed on how to properly secure your PII. Such individuals may be independent third-parties, but such third parties shall be held to the same standard as other individuals with access to PII.

NCI may, on occasion, share aggregated information stripped of all personal identifiers to third parties without your consent. At no point in time will any of your individual PII be shared with any third party without your consent. In the event that NCI plans to share any PII with any third party, and in the event the third party intends to contact you, NCI will provide you an opportunity to withhold your consent of your information transfer. In such an instance NCI will make all commercially reasonable efforts to ensure that your information is not shared.

Disclosure

Not withstanding the aforementioned, NCI generally may disclose PII or other informationif required to do so by law or upon a showing of compelling circumstances affecting the health or safety of any individual. NCI will make reasonable efforts to contact parties prior to disclosure of their PII to enable them to seek a protective order which may limit such disclosure, if appropriate, by such party.

4. Impact of Unauthorized Access of PII

NCI uses commercially reasonable efforts to protect your PII from unauthorized access or disclosure. However, NCI does not ensure the security of your PII. Accordingly, NCI assumes no liability for any disclosure of data due to errors in transmission, unauthorized access or other acts of third parties, or acts or omissions beyond NCI’s reasonable control.

5. Additional Use of the Website By Children Under The Age 13 Not Authorized

NCI’s services are not directed at or intended to be utilized by children. Accordingly, we request that if you are under thirteen (13) years of age that you do not provide us with any PII.

In the event that you suspect or believe that a child under the age of thirteen (13) has gained access to the Services without your permission, please contact: NCISmokefreeTeam@mail.nih.gov. We have taken commercially reasonable steps to restrict use of the Services to those who are at least thirteen (13) years old when possible.

6. Applicable Law

We control and operate the NCI website from the United States. The website is not intended to subject us to the laws or jurisdiction of any state, country or territory other than that of the United States. Individuals who choose to access the website do so at their own initiative and are responsible for complying with all local laws, rules and regulations. This Policy shall be governed by the federal laws of the United States, and the state and local laws of the District of Columbia. Jurisdiction will be exclusive to the Federal and State Courts located in the District of Columbia, and by using the Service you hereby consent to the personal and subject matter jurisdiction of such courts.

7. Changes To This Policy

NCI reserves the right to make changes to this Policy at any time. In the event this Policy is changed, NCI will update the “Last Modified” date at the bottom of this web page. Use of the website after changes are made to the Policy will be considered as your consent to the new terms. You are encouraged to periodically review this Privacy Policy to be sure you are familiar with the most current version.

8. Contact Information

If you have questions about this Privacy Policy or anything else about NCI, you can contact us at the following email address: NCISmokefreeTeam@mail.nih.gov.

For more information on VA’s smoking and tobacco cessation programs, visit: http://www.publichealth.va.gov/smoking/.

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