Privacy Policy

COVID Nearby Team knows you care about how your information is used and shared.  We take protecting your privacy very seriously.  Please read the following to learn more about how we use and protect information collected through Rutgers COVID Nearby Project’s website, mobile interface(s) and related services (the “Services”).

By using the Services in any manner, you acknowledge that you accept the practices and policies outlined in this COVID Nearby Privacy Policy (this “Privacy Policy”).

You consent that we will collect, use, and share your information as described in this Privacy Policy.

What does this Privacy Policy cover?

This Privacy Policy covers our treatment of personally identifiable information (“Personal Information”) that we gather when you are accessing or using the Services.  This Privacy Policy does not apply to the practices of companies or institutions that we do not own or control, or to individuals that we do not employ or manage.

Your use of the Services will allow you to provide us with Personal Information, including but not limited to, information about yourself and your symptoms.  The Program collects your Personal Information for the purposes of a research study being conducted at Rutgers called “Privacy-Preserving Crowdsensing of COVID-19 and its Sociological and Epidemiological Implications” (the “Study”).  If you choose to use the Services to provide us with any Personal Information, you must first review and acknowledge the informed consent form for the Study.

We do not knowingly collect or solicit Personal Information from anyone under the age of 18 or knowingly allow such persons to register for the Services.  If you are under 18, you must not attempt to register for the Services and you must not send any information about yourself to us, including but not limited to your name, address, telephone number, or email address. In the event that we learn that we have collected Personal Information from a person under age 18, we will delete that information. If you believe that we might have any information from or about a person under the age of 18, please contact us at

What information does COVID Nearby collect?

The Program will obtain information from you in two ways.  The first is information that you manually enter.  The second is information that is collected automatically to track your usage.

Information you manually enter:

We receive and store any information you manually enter into the Services.  The Program will ask you to enter information including, but not limited to, zip code, race, age, sex, health symptoms and any free text or verbal responses you may choose.  In addition, you may elect to provide your email address and phone number.  Your email address and phone number are optional and will not impact your participation in the Program.  In the future, we may collect additional health-related information as the Program is further developed. 

Information collected automatically:

The Program may automatically receive technical information relating to your usage of the Services such as your IP address, operating system, device, geo-location, features used, content viewed and downloaded, the dates and times of your interactions with the Services and other information.  We may use this information to understand, customize and improve user experience with the Services and the Study.  For example, we may engage analytics services to analyze this information in order to help us understand how visitors engage with and navigate the Services, how and when features within the Services are used and by how many users.   

Third-Party Use of Cookies and Other Tracking Technologies 

Some content or applications provided on the Services are served by third-parties, including advertisers, ad networks and servers, content providers, and application providers. We do not control these third parties’ tracking technologies or how they may be used. If you have any questions about an advertisement or other targeted content, you should contact the responsible provider directly.


We may use your data to communicate with you, including through email, SMS text messaging, and/or notifications if you elect to provide such information.  We will not send you any unsolicited marketing or spam and will take all reasonable steps to ensure that we comply with our obligations under applicable state and federal law.  If you no longer wish to receive email and push notifications, you can use the unsubscribe link in the email sent by us or unsubscribe via SMS test messaging.    

Is Personal Information about me secure?

We endeavor to protect the privacy of the Personal Information we hold in our records, but we cannot guarantee complete security. Unauthorized entry or use, hardware or software failure, and other factors, may compromise the security of your Personal Information at any time.

Please note that all information collected by the Services will be processed in the United States, and this may be done by Rutgers or another entity under contract with Rutgers.  During the Study, only Rutgers and contractors engaged by Rutgers will be able to compile data you generate or provide through or with the Services. 

Will Rutgers share any of the information it receives?

If you have granted us permission to do so in the informed consent form for the Study, we may share your de-identified study data (data without your name, date of birth, or email address) with researchers in or outside of Rutgers under criteria established by Rutgers.

The information collected by the Services will not be shared with or sold for advertising purposes.

We reserve the right to disclose information collected through the Services as required by law, when we believe disclosure is necessary to comply with a regulatory requirement, judicial proceeding, court order, or legal process served on us, or to protect the safety, rights, or property of Rutgers or the public.

What choices do I have?

You may choose not to participate in the Study.  Your participation is voluntary and have the right to withdraw your consent and discontinue participation at any time.   If you withdraw from the Study, we will retain all of information about you that was collected prior to that point and continue to use such information as described in this Privacy Policy.  If you have questions about withdrawing, please contact the COVID Nearby Team for this project at

You may be able to add, update, or delete certain information as explained above. When you update or delete information, we may maintain a copy of the unrevised information in our records.

Effective Date and Changes to this Privacy Policy

This Privacy Policy is effective as of May 02, 2020.  We may amend this Privacy Policy from time to time.  New versions of this Privacy Policy are effective when they are posted to our website at the following link. We may notify you of changes to our Privacy Policy through email or other forms of communication.  Even if we do not notify you, it is your obligation to check the Privacy Policy for changes.  Use of information we collect now is subject to the version of the Privacy Policy in effect at the time such information is used.

Questions or concerns?

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the topics addressed in this privacy policy, please send a message to:

This Privacy Policy forms part of our Terms and Conditions of Use and as such shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of New Jersey as further provided in the Terms and Conditions.