Privacy Policy

Rural Development Privacy Policy and Security Statement

Thank you for visiting the USDA Rural Development website and reviewing our privacy statement. Our privacy policy is clear: we will collect no personal information about you when you visit our website unless you choose to provide that information to us.

Here is how we handle information about your visit to our website:

Information Collected and Stored Automatically

If you do nothing during your visit but browse through the website, read pages, or download information, we will gather and store certain information about your visit automatically. This information does not identify you personally. We automatically collect and store only the following information about your visit:

  • The Internet domain (for example, "" if you use a private Internet access account, or "" if you connect from a university's domain) and Internet Protocol (IP) address (an IP address is a number that is automatically assigned to your computer whenever you are surfing the web) from which you access our website;
  • The type of browser and operating system used to access our site;
  • The date and time you access our site;
  • The pages you visit; and
  • If you linked to the Rural Development website from another website, the address of that website.

We use this information to help us make our site more useful to visitors -- to learn about the number of visitors to our site and the types of technology our visitors are using. We do not track or record information about individuals and their visits.

If You Send Us Personal Information

If you choose to provide us with personal information, as in an e-mail to someone or by filling out a form with your personal information and submitting it to us through our website, we use that information to respond to your message and to help us locate for you the information you have requested. We treat e-mails the same way that we regard letters sent to Rural Development. We are required to maintain many documents under the Presidential Records Act for historical purposes, but we do not collect personal information for any purpose other than to respond to you. We only share the information you give us with another government agency if your inquiry relates to that agency, or as otherwise required by law. Moreover, we do not create individual profiles with the information you provide or to give it to any private organizations. Rural Development does not collect information for commercial marketing.

Links to Other Sites

Our website has links to many other federal agencies. In a few cases, we link to private organizations with their permission. Once you access another site through a link that we provide, you are subject to the privacy policy of the new site.

Website Security

The USDA Rural Development website is provided as a public service.

  • Information presented on the Rural Development website is considered public information and may be distributed or copied. Use of appropriate byline/photo/image credits is requested.
  • For site management, information is collected for statistical purposes. This government computer system uses software programs to create summary statistics, which are used for such purposes as assessing what information is of most and least interest, determining technical design specifications, and identifying system performance or problem areas.
  • For site security purposes and to ensure that this service remains available to all users, this government computer system employs software programs to monitor network traffic to identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information, or otherwise cause damage.
  • Except for authorized law enforcement investigations, no other attempts are made to identify individual users or their usage habits. Raw data logs are used for no other purposes and are scheduled for regular destruction in accordance with the National Archives and Records Administration General Schedule 20.
  • Unauthorized attempts to upload information or change information on this service are strictly prohibited and may be punishable under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986 and the National Information Infrastructure Protection Act of 1996.
  • Information posted on this site complies with the standards set forth in the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998.
  • Information posted on this site may be changed and re-posted. If there are discrepancies between the information on the Internet and the Department's official version or federal regulation publication, those official publications take precedence.


Effort has been made to provide accurate and complete information. However, we cannot guarantee that there will be no errors. Neither the U.S. Government, USDA, nor USDA Rural Development assumes any legal liability for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, product, or process disclosed herein, or represents that use of such information, product, or process would not infringe on privately owned rights.

The Rural Development website contains links to various other federal and state agencies and private organizations. These links are maintained solely for the user's information and convenience. Once you link to another site, please be aware that you are then subject to the policies of the new site. In addition, please note that Rural Development does not control and cannot guarantee the relevance, timeliness, or accuracy of these outside materials. Further, the inclusion of links or pointers to particular items in hypertext is not intended to reflect their importance, nor is it intended to constitute approval or endorsement of any views expressed, or products or services offered, on these outside web sites, or the organizations sponsoring the web sites.

If you have any comments or questions about the information presented here, please forward them to Comments or questions specifically related to computer or systems security should be directed to Rural Development's Information Systems Security Staff at