GAVO Data Center -- Privacy Policy

Log Data at the Data Center

Long time storage

For purposes of statistical evaluation, requests made to this site are stored indefinitely with the following pieces of data:

See below on how to suppress this storage.

The address handle is a hash of the IP address embedded in monthly changing random data. In effect, as soon as the random data is deleted (which happens at the second of each month), your IP address will no longer be recoverable from the logs, even by enumerating hashes of all 232 possible IPv4 addresses.

For POST queries (most of the queries within the DC are POST queries) no query parameters are logged. GET queries have their parameters in the URI; these are logged. GET queries are used when you bookmark forms or use the "Result link" feature; also, some of the VO DAL protocols (like SCS or SIAP) use GET requests.

We do not permanently store referrer information.

Suppressing Long Term Storage

To suppress storage of logs on our site, set your browser or proxy to include the string "NOLOG" in your user agent identification. You can use extensions like User Agent Switcher or privacy-enhancing proxies like Privoxy to do that.

If you access /robots.txt at the beginning of your session, the software will judge that you are a robot and ignore your requests for the purposes of keeping logs.

Note, however, that funding agencies foolishly like to read things like "4529 distinct non-robot hosts accessed our services in January 2009, using, on average, 3.9 different services". Such numbers will look much worse if many people suppress logging.

Short Time Storage

To aid in debugging and for monitoring site operation, a server log containing referrers and clear text IP addresses is kept roughly until the end of the current month.

Log Data at the University Computing Center

If you access our site through the shorthand vo.uni-hd.de, your requests are proxied to us through a machine at the Heidelberg Computing Center. Their retention policies are unknown and undisclosed. However, if you access us through the address dc.zah.uni-heidelberg.de (which is what is happens when you go through the registry and usually after the first request even when using the shorthand URLs) or through dc.g-vo.org, no such logs will be kept.

Mail

We do not have a defined policy on deleting electronic mail or instant messages sent for, e.g., bug reports, help requests, and the like. They may be deleted right away or stored indefinitely. If you want us to delete your mail right after answering it, please state so in your message.

Individual Services

Individual services may produce further data traces, e.g., through upload of your data, possibly cookies and the like. In cases in which this is not obvious, the services will state so in their long descriptions; see the service info links on the service's main page.


Data Center Home

The Data Center is currently running in emergency mode after our database server failed catastrophically (see our blog for infos and updates).

This means, in particular, that services built on top of large tables may currently be broken. Since our replacement server is much slower than our usual machine, restoring them will take quite some time.

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