after a bunch of government requests on lender history, libraries started routinely destroying the record after the book is returned.
That was an excellent opportunity for you to offer citations, but, even if you have any, it may be smoke up your (and mine) eyes to make us believe, library computers are saf — because of the heroic librarians. I'd just use tor.
"RESOLVED, That the American Library Association urges all libraries to adopt and implement patron privacy and record retention policies that affirm that "the collection of personally identifiable information should only be a matter of routine or policy when necessary for the fulfillment of the mission of the library" (ALA Privacy: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights); and, be it further
RESOLVED, That the American Library Association considers sections of the USA PATRIOT Act are a present danger to the constitutional rights and privacy rights of library users and urges the United States Congress to:
provide active oversight of the implementation of the USA PATRIOT Act and other related measures, and the revised Attorney General Guidelines to the Federal Bureau of Investigation;
hold hearings to determine the extent of the surveillance on library users and their communities; and amend or change the sections of these laws and the guidelines that threaten or abridge the rights of inquiry and free expression..."
"The library will do its utmost to uphold the privacy and confidentiality of patrons’ free access to information. The library follows the laws and library policies to control behavior that involves public safety or criminal behavior.
Does the “Patriot Act” Change Things?
Yes, and this is a dilemma for the North Adams Public Library. The library has the responsibility of protecting the privacy of its patrons while responding to national security concerns.
Should library records be requested under the USA Patriot Act, the law states that in certain circumstances, library staff cannot inform the person about whom the information is requested, cannot speak to co-workers, the media or other government officials about the inquiry. Such requests, should they occur, may only be reported to the appropriate higher authority within the library. Under the USA PATRIOT Act, failure to comply with the search warrant, or of other applicable terms of those acts, is a felony.
The NAPL Procedures Regarding Information Access and Confidentiality
Once a search has been conducted, the software does not retain a copy of the search, and therefore no record of the search will exist.
Patrons use their library card to check out a computer but the record of this use is cleared when the next person logs on to the computer. When the patron logs off the Gates computers the software erases all history of their research and activity. The Dell computers keep the history for 24 hours after a patron has logged off.
When a hold is placed on a patron’s account, by the patron or a library staff member, the system creates a link to that item. No long-term record of the hold is retained by C/WMARS beyond the point of the circulation transaction.
Interlibrary Loan Records: These transactions are for requested items that do not appear in the C/W MARS network libraries. The NAPL tracks these items until they are returned to the owning library then all paper records are destroyed.
"In protecting the privacy rights and the confidentiality rights of library users, librarians, staff, educators, volunteers, and trustees should limit the degree to which personally identifiable information is monitored, collected, disclosed, and distributed while fulfilling their duty to comply with their state’s library confidentiality statute"
"Circulation Records: Data matching items with patrons is stored on the LINKcat system while the material is checked out to the patron. When an item is returned and any fees and fines are paid, it is removed from the borrower's file but a link from the item to the borrower is maintained until the item is loaned to the next borrower, or 30 days elapse." http://www.madisonpubliclibrar...
"10. The Library does not maintain a history of what a library user has previously checked out once books and materials have been returned on time." (http://sfpl.org/index.php?pg=2000001301)
"Jenny's pads her boobs, I know because she showed me last night" gets into the exact same privacy issues as Glass, does it not?
"Pics or it didn't happen."
But what many people don't know is that private non-governmental agencies are not bound by these rules
Also known as the Batman exception.
What this country needs is a good five cent microcomputer.