Protection of Personal Privacy


Columbia Housing strongly values and protects students’ privacy. In an effort to better protect students’ privacy, Housing created the following notice to inform students of online information practices. This notice also includes choices students can make about the way their information is collected and used within Housing’s sites and services.

Visit the Columbia University IT (CUIT) website to learn more about how the University handles personally identified information. 

When Personal Information Is Collected and How Columbia Housing Uses Students’ Personal Information

Columbia Housing collects personal information both for compliance purposes, and to make our site(s) and service(s) more relevant and rewarding for students to use.

Columbia Housing’s Web server automatically recognizes visitors’ domain, service provider, IP address, operating system, and Internet browser. In addition, Columbia Housing’s Web server records web traffic. Columbia Housing uses this information, in aggregate, for research reports and performance surveys. Sometimes, Columbia Housing uses this non-personally identifiable information to improve their website’s design and content in an effort to better personalize students’ Internet experience.

Some site(s) and service(s) require students to provide personally identifiable information in order to participate in the activities and offerings.

Columbia Housing may use a student’s information to fulfill the student’s requests for products, programs, and services, to respond to their inquiries about Columbia Housing’s offerings, and/or to offer the student other products, programs, or services that may be of interest. Columbia Housing may also use this information to communicate with students, such as to notify the student when Housing makes changes to their services, to fulfill the student’s request, or to contact the student about their account.

Columbia Housing may also use students’ information to update internal systems. This allows for seamless delivery of services and resources across the University.

Columbia Housing's website(s) and service(s) may contain email services, bulletin board services and/or other message or communication facilities designed to enable students to communicate with others (collectively, "Communication Services"). The information Columbia Housing collects in connection with these Communication Services is used to provide an interactive experience. Housing uses this information to facilitate participation in these Communication Services.


To enhance and personalize a student’s experience, some of Columbia Housing’s webpages use "cookies." Cookies are text files that Housing’s Web browser places on their computer's hard drive to store the student’s preferences. For more information about cookies, please visit the Columbia University Website Cookie Notice

Collection of Information by Third-Party Sites

Some of Columbia Housing’s site(s) and service(s) contain links to other sites whose information practices may be different. Visitors should consult the other sites' privacy policies as we have no control over information that is submitted to, or collected by, these third parties.

Outside Parties

Will Columbia Housing Disclose Students' Personal Information to Parties Outside the University?

Columbia Housing does not sell, rent, give away, or loan any identifiable information regarding its members to any third party other than agents and contractors of Columbia Housing or Columbia University.

Agents and contractors of Columbia Housing or Columbia University who have access to personally identifiable information are required to protect this information in a manner that is consistent with this privacy policy by, for example, not using the information for any purpose other than to carry out the services they are performing for Columbia Housing or Columbia University.

Columbia Housing or Columbia University may release personal information when such release is reasonably necessary to (i) comply with law, (ii) enforce or apply the terms of any its user agreements, or (iii) protect the rights, property, or safety of Columbia Housing, Columbia University, its users, or others.

How Columbia Housing Protects Students' Information

Columbia Housing has put in place appropriate physical, electronic, and managerial procedures to safeguard and help prevent unauthorized access, maintain data security, and correctly use the information Housing collects online. Columbia Housing secures information transmission, storage, and retrieval. To learn more, review the Columbia University Privacy Notice.

On Housing’s secure server(s), Housing uses industry-standard Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) technology to guarantee the confidentiality of online transactions made on our site. SSL authentication and encryption of the information that a student sends to Housing over the Internet helps protect the student’s online transaction information from third-party interception.

Columbia Housing never displays a student’s sensitive information such as their full credit card number once it has been entered. Housing will only reveal the last four digits of the student’s credit card for verification purposes.

Columbia Housing urges students to protect their own privacy. Housing recommends that students do not share any account information or passwords used to access Housing’s site(s) or service(s). Housing would never request a student’s password.

Although Housing takes appropriate measures to safeguard against unauthorized disclosures of information, Housing cannot assure students that personally identifiable information that Housing collects will never be disclosed in a manner that is inconsistent with this privacy policy.

Unfortunately, despite all Housing’s efforts, there is always a risk that third parties may unlawfully intercept transmissions. This reality is true of all Internet use. As a result, Housing cannot ensure the security of any information students transmit. Students transmit all information at their own risk.

How Can Students Access or Correct Their Information?

Many of the online site(s) and service(s) Columbia Housing provides allow students to manage their personal information. Students should contact Housing if they need further assistance. In an effort to protect students' privacy and security, Housing will take reasonable steps to help verify a student’s identity before granting access or making corrections.

Student’s Consent

By using our website, students consent to the collection and use of their information by Columbia Housing and Columbia University.

If Columbia Housing decides to change their privacy policy, they will post those changes on their page so that students are always aware of what information they collect, how they use it, and under what circumstances they disclose it. Columbia Housing is committed to upholding their community members’ and visitors’ right to privacy. For questions or concerns, please email Housing. Further information on Columbia University’s overarching online privacy and network use policies, please visit the Columbia University Computing, Network and Information website.