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Department of Employee Trust Funds
Internet Site Privacy Policy


Privacy Statement

The Wisconsin Department of Employee Trust Funds (ETF) maintains this Internet site to provide benefits information and service to Wisconsin state and local government employees and employers. In order to operate this site, we collect information about how the Internet site is used. The purpose of this privacy policy is to let you know what information we collect, why it is collected, how we use it, and the extent to which the information may be disclosed to third parties.

Information Collected

We collect and analyze certain information to continually improve the value of the materials available on our site. The data in our Internet site logs is not personally identifiable, and we make no attempt to link any data with individuals. When you browse or download information from our site, we collect and store the following information:

  1. Your Internet Protocol (IP) address or domain name;
  2. The date and time you visited our Internet site; and
  3. The Internet pages or services you accessed at this site.

    An IP address is a unique number assigned to your computer and is functionally similar to a street address or telephone number. A domain name is an IP address that has been converted into words. We count IP addresses and domain names to determine the number of visitors to each page, document or form during specific time periods. Analysis of the number of visitors to a page helps us to determine if we should continue to provide the information on the page in the future.

  4. The type of Web browser and computer operating system.

    Knowing the type of browser (for example, Internet Explorer, FireFox. Safari, etc.) and computer operating system (for example, Windows XP, 2007, Mac OS X, etc.) used to access our Internet site helps us configure our pages to display properly. Web pages do not always display the same on every type of browser and operating system, so the pages must be coded for appropriate access.

  5. The Web site you visited prior to coming to ETF’s site.

    We collect the name of the Web site you visited prior to coming to ETF’s Internet site to determine the sites that provide the most referrals to our site, as well as to learn which search engines (for example, Google, Yahoo, Hotmail, etc.) are used most frequently to find ETF’s site. This information helps us to find effective ways to attract visitors and to properly structure our Internet site to appear when you look for it using a search engine.


Any personally identifiable information obtained by ETF via this Web site is protected from public access from the Internet. It is only available to the public when it is required by state and federal laws.

We provide users of our Internet site with a secure means to send electronic mail (e-mail) to ETF, using a fill-in form at contact us. The form uses Secure Sockets Layers (SSL), the industry standard for securely transferring information on the Internet. If you send us a message using the form we have provided, all information in your message is encrypted, or scrambled, into a code as it is sent over the Internet. This means that your message cannot be read by anyone other than us. However, if you send us an e-mail message using another means, such as Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, or another e-mail client, your message may not be protected from being read by a third party before the message reaches ETF.

Personal Information and Choice

"Personal information" is information about an individual that is readily identifiable to that specific individual. Personal information includes personal identifiers such as an individual's name, address, phone number, driver’s license number and Social Security number.

A domain name or IP address is not considered personal information. While an IP address can be associated with an individual computer, the IP address does NOT automatically identify the name of the computer's user or its purchaser.

We do not collect any of your personal information via our Internet site unless you voluntarily provide it to us (for example, if you choose to send an e-mail message to ETF). If during your visit to the ETF site you send us an e-mail message, the following information will be collected: Your e-mail address and contents of your e-mail message. We may use the information in your e-mail message to respond to you, to research issues you identify, to further improve our Internet site, or to forward the e-mail to another state or federal agency for appropriate action.

If you voluntarily provide ETF with personal information, state and federal privacy laws may protect it. However, if the information is not protected by federal or state law, this information is a public record once you provide it and may be subject to requests for public inspection and copying.


Cookies are small text files placed on your computer’s hard drive by a Web site that you visit. A cookie contains information that your browser saves and sends back to a Web server when you visit a site again. There are different types of cookies. ETF uses only session cookies. Session cookies allow data to be maintained for your benefit as you navigate our Internet site. For example, a session cookie is used to temporarily store the information you enter into the Internet site’s Retirement Benefits Calculator. Session cookies do not remain on your computer when you terminate your visit to the Internet site. The information on these cookies is retained by ETF only while your session is active. Additionally, our interactive programs, such as the WRS Retirement Benefits Calculator, use cookies to track the information you input into the system. These cookies allow the programs to operate correctly and know where to return the results. These cookies do not contain confidential or personally identifiable information.

You can configure your browser to accept all cookies, reject all cookies, or notify you when a cookie is set. (Each browser is different, so check the "Help" menu of your browser to learn how to change your cookie preferences.)


The ETF site links to other sites. These links may include Web sites operated by other government agencies, nonprofit organizations and private businesses. When you link to another site, you are no longer on a site covered by this privacy policy and are subject to the policies of that new site.

Neither ETF, nor any agency, officer or employee of ETF warrants the accuracy, reliability or timeliness of any information published by this system, nor endorses any content, viewpoints, products or services linked from this system, and shall not be held liable for any losses caused by reliance on the accuracy, reliability or timeliness of such information. Portions of such information may be incorrect or not current. Any person or entity that relies on any information obtained from this system does so at their own risk.


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