Privacy Information


The UWM Libraries respects the privacy of its users in accordance with Wisconsin Statute §43.30, the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”), and the following statement in American Library Association’s document Privacy: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights:

“Users have the right to be informed what policies and procedures govern the amount and retention of personally identifiable information, why that information is necessary for the library, and what the user can do to maintain his or her privacy.”

This policy reviews the types of personally identifying information collected by the UWM Libraries, how this information is used, and how it can be made available to third parties outside the UWM Libraries.

Information We Collect

The following information may be collected by the UWM Libraries about users of the UWM Libraries’ facilities, website, catalog, online resources, services and systems:

  • Your browser type, operating system, and the domain and Internet protocol (IP) address from which you are connecting.
  • Your UWM ID number, address, phone number, and e-mail address are stored in our system and are attached to any service requests, such as an Interlibrary Loan (ILL) request, that you make.
  • Your circulation record, such as currently checked out materials, as well as current and historical fines.
  • Personalized catalog settings, such as search preferences, marked items, and saved searches.
  • ILL requests.
  • Questions submitted to the Ask a Librarian service.
  • For the security of our users, our staff, and our collections, activity in the UWM Libraries public areas may be covered by security video surveillance cameras. Cameras are monitored from stations within the staff offices. The activity captured on the cameras is also recorded and archived.

How This Information is Used

The user information collected by the UWM Libraries is necessary to provide the requested library services (e.g. book or article delivery to the user), follow safety precautions, and to comply with license agreements to limit certain electronic resources to the UWM community.

Information sent to our online systems is transmitted over the Internet via the hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP) and is not encrypted. The Interlibrary Loan (ILLiad) and Off Campus Access (EZProxy) systems use a 40-bit Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) Server Authentication method for encrypted browser communications. Browser cookies are used to authenticate off-campus users for remote access to subscription databases, and to present customized information in the catalog system.

Information Shared with Partners

Personally-identifying information about your library usage sometimes needs to be shared with other libraries and UWM departments.

  • Data regarding your UW System Borrowing requests is shared with relevant University of Wisconsin libraries.
  • Your name is attached to requests we send to other libraries to fulfill your Interlibrary Loan requests.
  • Live chat questions submitted to the Ask a Librarian service may be shared with staff at other member libraries of the QuestionPoint Global Reference Network (such as during times that UWM librarians are not providing coverage).
  • When you authenticate as a UWM user for Off-campus access to online library subscriptions, your information, along with the requested resource, is sent to the UWM “Single Sign On” system (run by UITS).
  • When you create an account with or authenticate via a library database vendor, how your information is used and shared is governed by that website’s privacy policy.
  • Your library fines are reported to the Department of Enrollment Services, and, if necessary, an external collection agency, which may report you to a credit bureau if the fines are unpaid.
  • Inappropriate behavior, such as criminal activity or violations of the user responsibilities, may be reported to the UWM Police Department or the UWM Behavior Review Team.

Release of Information to Third Parties

In an effort to respect all users’ privacy and in accordance with FERPA and the American Library Association’s Policy Concerning Confidentiality of Personally Identifiable Information About Library Users and Policy on Confidentiality of Library Records, the UWM Libraries maintains a strict policy of not releasing any information about your use of the UWM Libraries to third parties, except as required by law or unless it obtains your permission to do so. The UWM Libraries may disclose certain personally identifiable information to appropriate school officials within UWM who have been determined to have a legitimate educational interest in viewing such records or their components.

Although the UWM Libraries makes every reasonable effort to protect your privacy, it is possible that law enforcement officials can obtain personally identifying library records. As dictated by Wisconsin law (Statute §43.30), a court order may compel the libraries to release its records. Also, under Wisconsin Statute §43.30, the UWM Libraries must disclose all library records to a custodial parent or guardian of a child who is under the age of 16 and who is not a UWM student. Under the USA PATRIOT Act (Public Law 107-56), library records may be obtained by federal agents. This law may also prohibit us from informing you if federal agents have obtained records about your use of the libraries.


If you have questions or comments about the UWM Libraries privacy policies and procedures, please contact us via the Ask a Librarian service, or write to:

UWM Libraries
Administrative Office
2311 East Hartford Avenue
Milwaukee, WI 53211