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King County, as a government entity, conducts public business and its records related to the business of King County are generally available for public review. Nevertheless, King County is committed, to the extent allowable by law, to protect and secure your personal information contained in King County records. This privacy commitment must be balanced with the rights of public access under Chapter 42.56 RCW (Washington Public Disclosure Act) and consistent with KCC 2.14.030 and any other applicable federal, state, and local statute or regulation.

Information privacy

King County gathers personal information when it is relevant and necessary, fair and to the extent possible with the knowledge and consent of the individual, to accomplish county business. We only obtain this information through legal means. When King County collects personal information from you, we:

  • Tell you why we are collecting this personal information.
  • Limit the amount of your personal information that we collect to that which is necessary for the stated purpose for which it was collected.
  • Take steps to use your personal information to the stated purpose for which it was collected.
  • Take steps to ensure that, at the time of collection, your personal information is accurate, complete and current.
  • Provide your personal information only to authorized King County employees and private contractors or public organizations on a need-to-know basis and as a result of a public disclosure request as required by the Public Records Act.
  • Do not sell or make your personal information available to others without your consent
    except when:
    • Legally required or permitted by law; or
    • Needed to complete your transaction with the county.
  • Retain personal information only as long as necessary to conduct county business in accordance with records retention schedules.
  • Dispose of personal information in a secure manner that prevents unauthorized disclosure.
  • Take organizational, technological, and physical measures to securely safeguard personal information.

Information specific to the Internet

King County may track information, such as user hits, visits and sessions; however this information cannot be linked to a specific person.

Cookies are another example of anonymous information that we may use. Cookies are small text files that are placed on a user's computer by a Web server. We occasionally use cookies to tailor information to the needs of a user's specific browser. Our Web server is not able to determine any data about you nor does it do anything with these cookies.

Personal information collected on certain King County webpages is data that you provide to us about yourself. Providing personal information to us on our website is purely voluntary. This information is used to better serve you. Should you choose not to provide personal information to King County on a website, you may provide this information to us in another way, such as visiting a county office during normal business hours or, for some county services, completing your business by mail or telephone.

When King County collects personal information from children using our website, it complies with the Federal Children's Online Privacy Protection Act.

King County's website has links to other websites, including other government agencies, nonprofit organizations and private businesses. When you link to one of these external websites, you are no longer on King County's website and this privacy notice no longer applies. Instead, you are subject to the privacy notice or other terms and conditions of that website.

Review and correct your personal information

Upon request to a specific King County agency, you may review your personal information that the agency maintains about you and ask that agency to correct any inaccuracies.

Other King County privacy notices

Some King County agencies may have privacy notices that are more restrictive than this information privacy notice. In that case, the agency's specific privacy notice takes precedence over this notice. For privacy inquiries specific to a King County agency's privacy notice, please contact that agency directly.

Alternate formats of this document are available by telephone at 206-263-0346 or TTY Relay 711.