Pilot programs need privacy, too – USPS must comply with federal requirements

Under the Privacy Act of 1974, USPS employees and contractors must hold personal information in confidence and protect it from unauthorized disclosure and misuse.

February 29, 2024
The Postal Service wants employees and contractors to know that the requirements under the Privacy Act of 1974 also apply to the organization’s pilot programs.

The Privacy Act sets protections for personal information that USPS maintains in a “system of records,” which is any file, database or program from which the information is retrieved by name or another identifier.

To comply with the Privacy Act, the Postal Service must strictly limit how personal information is collected, used, disclosed, stored and discarded. This applies regardless of where the information is located — whether within USPS or with a contractor.

If a Postal Service pilot program requires the use of live data, the Privacy Act applies.

This means the organization’s privacy requirements — which include obtaining approval from the chief privacy and records management officer — must be complied with prior to implementing a pilot program, regardless of whether the program is conducted by USPS or through a contractor or business partner.

For questions regarding the Postal Service’s privacy requirements or processes, email the USPS Privacy Office. Any interpretation of the Privacy Act or its application must be made by the USPS Law Department and the chief privacy and records management officer.

Source: USPS

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