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ALA_Icon_180x180_BThis week, May 1-7, is Choose Privacy Week. This is the fifth year of Choose Privacy Week (w00t!) and this national public awareness campaign is close to my heart.

It’s trying to make people more aware of their personal privacy, what’s being tracked, and what they can do to prevent it.  And we in libraries don’t like tracking one bit, now do we?  This week was established by ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom (no surprise there).

Today I attended a great webinar: Defense Against the Digital Dark Arts, put together by ALA and full of awesome information about how to protect personal information, avoid surveillance, use secure and safe services, and protect your library patrons if you do work in library.  It’s archived and should be posted within a week for those of you who missed it (totally worth it).

The Choose Privacy website has a great list of resources for libraries and patrons (print some out now and/or link to them from your library’s website and social media).  NOW, I said!  This includes a quick PDF one-pager on library privacy for library records that pretty much any library could print and hand out to people.

In addition, the 2014 ALA Privacy Tool Kit is now online and includes a true treasure trove of privacy-protecting information and tips, including checklists for what various staff and stakeholders should do to ensure library information is being kept private and safe.  Hopefully your library has a privacy policy already, and if not–this toolkit will help you craft one.  And really…if you don’t have one, you need to get on that. For real.

So happy Choose Privacy Week everyone! Choose privacy, security, and down with surveillance and the NSA! (ooh, that’ll get me back on a naughty list won’t it?)

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