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Policy Statement

Information We Collect

In order to understand who uses our online resources and how they are used, when you visit this website or use online applications, we collect basic information such as the date and time, internet protocol (IP) address, information about your web browser and computer (computer type, browser type), the resources you visit on our site, the amount of data transmitted, etc. We use this information to generate aggregate statistics on the usage of our site. We share this aggregate information with NASA and with our parent organization, Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA). Some of this aggregate information will be made available to the public. We will not use this information to identify or track usage by individuals, except as necessary to provide user support and maintain our systems. Non-aggregated information is only available to the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) and authorized contractors.

We do not sell, rent, or exchange this information to anyone outside of STScI. We use this information only for the purpose of understanding how our resources are used and how they may be improved.

A "cookie" is a piece of data that our website transfers to your web browser to allow it to remember specific information about your visit. Some STScI web pages use cookies. We may use both session and persistent cookies. Session cookies last only as long as your web browser is open. Persistent cookies store information on your computer for longer periods of time. We use cookies to allow better navigation on our pages and to allow you to customize preferences. If you do not wish to have session or persistent cookies stored on your computer, you may disable them in your browser. However, this may prevent some STScI services from functioning properly.

Information You Supply

Some of our web pages and online applications may ask for personal information such as your email address, postal address, or institutional information. We may also require you to create an account to use some of our resources. We use this information only to provide you with access to the specified service. We may share this information with NASA, ESA, AURA, and other astronomical institutions.

Information You Share

Some of our services (e.g., blogs, wikis) allow you to contribute information that will be seen by other users of those pages, or by the public. This information may be indexed by search engines such as Google or Bing. You should exercise discretion to not reveal personal information.


STScI monitors computer and network systems to ensure that our services are available to the intended users. We monitor the computer and network systems to identify attempts to deny service or make unauthorized changes. Anyone using our systems expressly consents to such monitoring and is advised that if monitoring reveals evidence of possible abuse or criminal activity, such evidence may be provided to law enforcement officials. If we see evidence of improper access, we may, without notice, remove access for some or all users in order to further investigate the situation. We will restore the service as quickly as possible and provide the community with information about the situation.

Email Subscriptions

STScI maintains lists of subscribers who have asked to receive email updates. A recipient may unsubscribe from future messages via a link at the bottom of each email message. We do not sell, rent, exchange, or otherwise disclose our subscriber lists to persons or organizations outside STScI.

Note that your participation in an email subscription may expose your email address to other subscribers.

Links to External Sites

To provide you with general information, our site contains links to external (non-STScI) sites. You should realize that such links are subject to the privacy and security policies of the external site and that the STScI Online Privacy Policy does not apply. We can't guarantee the accuracy or relevance of information on an external site. A link to an external site is not an endorsement by STScI.

Social Websites

To better communicate with the public and astronomical community, STScI uses social websites such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube to disseminate information and to engage the community. STScI does not own, manage, or control the applications on social websites. Information that you supply to those sites is subject to their privacy and security policies and the STScI Online Privacy Policy does not apply.

Data Retention

The information we collect may be retained indefinitely.


In the event of a breach, or reasonable suspicion of a breach that allows an unauthorized person to access personally identifiable information, we will inform you as soon as possible. This notice may be sent to you individually, or we may notify you via STScI applications or our social media presence.

Accessibility Statement

We strive to ensure that our resources are accessible to individuals with disabilities in accordance with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act. If you have any difficulty viewing any page with adaptive technology, please .


We will share any information we have, including personal information, with organizations or individuals outside of STScI if we have a good-faith belief that this is reasonably necessary to: meet applicable law, regulation, legal process, or enforceable governmental request; enforce applicable policies, including investigation of potential violations; detect, prevent, or otherwise address fraud, security or technical issues; protect against harm to the rights, property, or safety of STScI, our users, or the public as required or permitted by law.

Children and Privacy

We believe in the importance of protecting the privacy of children online and do not knowingly contact or collect personal information from children under the age of 13. Our services are not intended to solicit information of any kind from children under 13. To notify us of our receipt of information from children under 13, please .


If you have questions about this policy, or you have a privacy concern, please .


Last reviewed and updated: October 24, 2022