How does GLOBE protect students’ privacy and personal information?


How does GLOBE protect students’ privacy and personal information?

The GLOBE Data and Information System is managed by NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. The NASA Web Privacy Policy is applicable to 

  • GLOBE Observer accounts are associated with an email address and country of residence only. We do not request nor do we store any other personal information in our system for a basic account. GLOBE assigns a unique numeric userID to each account, and the email associated with the account is never publicly displayed. Email addresses are used to send messages about the GLOBE Program and data collected, and may be used by a GLOBE Team manager for contacting those who have joined a team. Opt-in/opt-out options for satellite match emails and other communications can be found on the settings page in the app (accessed via the gear icon in the upper right). 
  • Users with a GLOBE Educator account may create up to 50 GLOBE student accounts. Student account logins look like an email (in the form of "" or similar), but are not active emails that can be used to send or receive email. Student accounts can be used to allow students to enter data measurements on the GLOBE website or to access the GLOBE Observer app without providing any personal information.
  • Data submitted via a GLOBE student account is associated in the system with the school’s name and the teacher’s account, and not with a particular student. In the GLOBE Visualization System, the data will be identified as part of the school, however it is set up in the system, e.g. “My Town Middle School.” 
  • GLOBE teachers can adjust their communication settings through the app or on their account settings page, accessed from the upper right corner on the GLOBE website
    • Note: You must be logged in to change your account settings.

Different countries have different requirements for technology use by children. According to the United States’ Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule, location and email address together may be considered personally identifiable information.  Children under 13 should only use the app under an adult’s supervision, such as via a teacher-generated GLOBE student account or with an account created with a parent email. GLOBE does not store home addresses and does not expose user emails with measurement data.

All photos submitted as part of an observation should not include identifiable faces or other text containing personal information, for example license plate numbers or street signs. All photos are screened upon submission to GLOBE. Photos containing faces and/or text may be rejected or may be auto-corrected by blurring the faces and/or text. As a result, it may be several hours and in rare circumstances as many as 72 hours before such photos are available from the GLOBE science database and a user’s “My Observations” page.