Information Confidentiality Policy


This statement is designed to protect the privacy of the alumni and other constituents of Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) and to maintain standards of confidentiality associated with information systems, electronic and paper records. At the same time, it is the desire of the division to provide assistance and support to those with legitimate needs for information to conduct analysis and to carry out programs, communications, and events which bring together alumni, donors, faculty/staff, students and friends of the university.

Information obtained from RIT's University Advancement Division or the Advance Information System is considered confidential and is to be used only to support the goals, programs and overall mission of RIT. In addition, information provided may not be reproduced, distributed or sold, either electronically or otherwise.

No information may be released externally for anything that may be construed as fundraising, solicitation, or marketing of any kind. Use of the information for these purposes is limited to Rochester Institute of Technology for the purposes of advancing its goals and overall mission.

Access to Information

RIT personnel may apply for access to the Advance information system by contacting the Manager of Development Information Systems. Users may be restricted to only those screens and capabilities necessary to carry out RIT business. Students employed by the University Advancement may be given access to the system in order to perform their jobs. Select student employees will be assigned logins and passwords in order to have update capability to the system. This will allow the origin of changes to the system to be tracked. No logins or passwords will be provided to non-RIT personnel.

The Controller's Office will be given access to all hard copy and electronic files in the Development Records area in order to carry out the reconciliation process. The internal audit staff will also be given access to all hard copy and electronic files, which are subject to their review at any time. External auditors will have access to all hard copy files, as well as the ability to review electronic files, but will not be issued logins or passwords.

Development Records' files, both hard copy and electronic, are the property of the Development and Alumni Offices within the University Advancement. These files contain specific information pertaining to those individuals and organizations important to the development and alumni efforts of the University. Information which is not relevant to these efforts should not be placed in the files. Restricted information** gathered by staff in their duties for the University may not be viewed by persons other than those involved in development/alumni activities, or by the alumni or donor himself/herself, and may not be given out to any other institution, organization or individual unless authorized by the Managing Director of University Advancement or the Assistant Vice President of Alumni Relations.

Files removed from the Records area must be checked out using out-cards indicating the date, file taken and the person taking the file. Files must be returned to Records as soon as possible. No files may leave the building. Large, multi-part files such as Eastman Kodak and Xerox are restricted to use in the Records area. Microfiche may be viewed in the Records area of the University Advancement suite, University Services Center, third floor. Fiche may not be removed from that area and must be returned to the file drawer when finished viewing.

An individual may request to see his/her own file by making an appointment with the Managing Director of University Advancement or the Assistant Vice President of Alumni Relations or a Director of Development. It is strongly advised that the file be reviewed with the individual, so that an explanation of why the material was gathered and retained may be made if necessary. If a request is made by an individual or an estate for the release of their file, a photocopy will be released and the original retained in the Records Department.

Release of Information

Alumni, faculty, staff and students may request directory information* on RIT constituents verbally or in writing. Requests involving more than ten records must be made in writing, with the intended purpose clearly defined. Restricted information may be requested by RIT personnel who have a legitimate need for the information in order to carry out tasks and/or programs which are in accordance with the overall goals and mission of the Institute. In the event of any question about what constitutes "legitimate need", the final decision will rest with the Managing Director of University Advancement or the Assistant Vice President of Alumni Relations. A request form may be obtained from either the Development or Alumni Relations office for this purpose. The confidentiality agreement on this form must be signed in order for the request to be considered. Special requests must be approved by the Managing Director of University Advancement or the Assistant Vice President of Alumni Relations.

Vendors who contract with RIT, such as direct mail firms, directory publishers, database screening firms, etc., may be provided with information on RIT constituents in order to provide a service to RIT. A confidentiality agreement must be signed before any information is released. The vendor must ensure the prompt return of any tapes, disks, or electronic software provided in fulfillment of the contract.

Volunteers working with Development/Alumni Relations staff will be provided with only that information necessary to perform their duties relative to their association with RIT. The Development & Alumni Relations representatives responsible for directing volunteer activities must ensure that this confidentiality policy is followed. All information must be returned to Development/Alumni Relations Offices or shredded when no longer useful.

Directory information may be released to other colleges and universities seeking the location of alumni with degrees from both RIT and the requesting institution. Directory information may also be released to law enforcement and student loan agencies. Requests from the media must be referred to University News Services.

The following precautions will be taken to safeguard the privacy of those listed in the database:

  •  If an RIT constituent requests that their directory or propriety information not be shared, they must be coded as such in the Advance Information System. This information may not be provided to anyone other than the person of record or RIT personnel.
  •  Any RIT constituent who requests not to be contacted by RIT must be coded as such in the Advance Information System and must be excluded from information provided to students and non-RIT personnel.
  •  If an RIT constituent's record is coded "unlisted", his or her directory information may not be shared with students or non-RIT personnel. A notice will be sent to the alumni to advise that someone is interested in contacting them. The notice will provide the necessary information for the alum to contact the requestor, if they choose.
  •  University Advancement staff will ascertain the reason for requests for information and must be satisfied that the response conforms to the University's policies before information is released.

FORMATS AVAILABLE FOR DISTRIBUTION OF INFORMATION Information from the Advance Information System may be obtained in the form of lists, labels, printouts, diskettes, and downloads by authorized staff within the division in support of approved activities.


Failure to abide by this policy may result in denial of access to information contained in the Advance Information System. Request for re-instatement of access must be approved by the Managing Director of University Advancement and Alumni Relations or the Assistant Vice President of Alumni Relations and must include written assurance of future compliance with the policy.

* Directory Information is defined as:

  •  Full name
  •  Address and telephone numbers
  •  Degree information (*requests for degree verification will be referred to the Registrar's office) Employer name, address and telephone number E-mail address Fax numbers

** Restricted Information is defined as:

  •  Student and Alumni Activities
  •  Sports
  •  Interests, Affiliations
  •  Family Members
  •  Degrees from other institutions
  •  Gift/Pledge data
  •  Miscellaneous comments, text, etc...