User Privacy Options

Complainants should control who has access to their private information. That's why we've created three unique options for how we collect and share their data.

Whichever option they choose, all information complainants provide will be privately shared with the relevant investigative agencies responsible for investigating complaints against police.

 

1. Full Transparency

The complainant will publish all the names of civilians and police officers on OpenPolice.org.

Complainants who select Full Transparency will have their uncensored story published on OpenPolice.org. This includes officers' and civilians' names and responses to open-ended questions. But other personal information (e.g. complainant contact info, home address, etc.) will not be published.

 

2. No Names Public

The complainant will not publish any names on this website. This includes police officers' names and badge numbers too.

Complainants who select No Names Public will provide everything investigators need — but only their anonymized data will be published on the OpenPolice.org. For reciprocity purposes, neither civilian nor police officer names will be published. Only the multiple-choice responses will be published. (This does not include responses to open-ended questions, which could reveal identities.)

 

3. Anonymous

The complainant needs to be anonymous, even though it might limit investigation.

For complainants who select Anonymous, no personal information about them is requested or collected. Neither OpenPolice.org staff nor investigators will be able to contact the complainant. While this makes it harder for investigative agencies to investigate, it's an important option for complainants fearful of retaliation.

Complainants' multiple-choice responses will be published. (This does not include responses to open-ended questions, which could reveal identities.) Any details that could be used for personal identification may be deleted from OpenPolice.org's database.

 

 

Documentation for Attorneys

This is not a privacy setting, but complaints intended for attorneys' eyes only are stored and published with anonymized data only.

Some people use OpenPolice.org to prepare documentation for an attorney. In these cases, no information will be shared with investigative agencies. Complainants can print out their complete complaint and download it as a PDF or raw data file. After completing the entire process, OpenPolice.org's copy of their complaint is stripped of all data that might be personally identifiable. Only multiple-choice question data will be saved and publicly associated with the police department records.

When such complaints are anonymized, all open-ended responses are permanently deleted from OpenPolice.org servers. But with the advice of their attorney — users can later upload their raw complaint data to publish their complete story.

 

 

Glossary of Terms

Multiple-Choice Questions: Users select answers from options on a predetermined list.

Open-Ended Questions: Users can type a narrative response in order to share their knowledge and/or feelings.

Anonymized Complaint Data: Because open-ended questions can potentially include personally-identifying information, anonymized data only includes responses to multiple-choice questions. And in some rare cases, multiple-choice question responses are also hidden if they potentially reveal too much about a person's identity.

 

Updated: October 24, 2018

Privacy Policy