Information Technology Services, which operates the Public Network Authentication System, complies with the privacy policy set forth by The University of Texas at Austin. The opening paragraph from the UT Austin Web Privacy Policy states:

"The University of Texas at Austin is committed to ensuring the privacy and accuracy of your confidential information. We do not actively share personal information gathered from our Web servers. However, because The University of Texas at Austin is a public institution, some information collected from the UT Austin Web site, including the summary server log information, e-mails sent to the Web site, and information collected from Web-based forms, may be subject to the Texas Public Information Act. This means that while we do not actively share information, in some cases we may be compelled by law to release information gathered from our Web servers."

You may read the entire UT Austin Web Privacy Policy at .

The type of information gathered on the Public Network Authentication System is specific to this system. Read below for more information.

Information We Gather

The Public Network Authentication Systems record the following session data:

  • your identity (based on your UT EID or Guest ID information)
  • amount of external data you consume
  • access dates and times
  • temporary Internet protocol (IP) address
  • permanent MAC address
  • current public Ethernet port or wireless access point

The data are used to ensure that university computing resources are used responsibly by university students, faculty, staff, and sponsored guests by controlling access to authorized users and by monitoring data usage.


Cookies are small messages given to your Web browser by a Web server. Your browser stores these messages as text files on your computer. Cookies are often used to remember information about preferences and pages you have visited. For example, when you visit some sites on the Web you might see a "Welcome Back" message. The first time you visited the site, a cookie was probably set on your computer; when you return, the cookie is read again. Most cookies expire after a certain length of time or on a certain date.

How the Authentication System Uses Cookies

When you log in to the Authentication System, your credentials — or session data — are stored on your computer in the form of cookies that persist for 12+ hours (the amount of time the cookie is valid is shown on the Popup Window). The Authentication System Web server securely delivers encrypted cookies to your browser through a secure socket layer (SSL) connection. While you are using the Public Network, the Authentication System periodically checks your credentials for three reasons:

  • to identify you as an authorized user,
  • to monitor your external data usage, and
  • to determine your current network location.

The Authentication System does not use cookies to record preferences, track sites you have visited, or track network applications you have used. The System does use cookies to remember your login information. ITS does not share any information gathered by the Authentication System unless compelled to by law.

Note: If you do not want to accept all cookies from all Web sites, you can enable cookies for only specific sites. For the Public Network Authentication System, specify thatall cookies from should be accepted.

How the Authentication System Removes Cookies

The cookie created by the Authentication System automatically expires after the specified authentication time period (12+ hours, as shown in the Popup Window). However, you can manually remove the Authentication System cookie before it expires by clicking Remove My Credentials when you log out.

At the end of a session, make sure you log out to prevent others from misusing your account.


If you have questions about this privacy information or you believe that your personal information has been released without your consent, send us e-mail.