Confidentiality of Personally Identifiable Information about Library Users

The ethical responsibilities of librarians, as well as House Bill 389 of the 123rd Ohio General Assembly (123HB389), protect the privacy of library users. All personally identifiable information about the users of the Athens County Public Libraries are held to be confidential. Confidentiality extends to information sought or received, and materials consulted, borrowed or acquired, and includes database search records, reference interviews, circulation records, interlibrary and intralibrary loan records, and other personally identifiable uses of library materials, facilities, or services.

In accordance with 123HB389, patron records will be released only in the following situations:

  1. Parents, guardians and custodians will have access to their minor children’s patron records.
  2. In accordance with a subpoena, search warrant, or other court order with good cause, or to a law officer who is investigating a matter involving public safety in exigent circumstances.
  3. With consent of the individual who is the subject of the record or information. Written consent by the individual who is the subject is preferred by the library.
  4. For library administrative purposes.