A New Digital Privacy Initiative

Posted on November 13, 2017

Brooklyn Public Library, The New York Public Library, Queens Library, and Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO) are pleased to announce a new initiative that will bring resources and information regarding digital privacy and data security to New York City’s public library staff.

NYC Digital Safety: Privacy & Security is a partnership between New York City’s three library systems and METRO, a library resources council serving NYC and Westchester County. With support from the City of New York Mayor’s Office of the Chief Technology Officer, the project will ensure that NYC residents can rely on public libraries for their questions about internet privacy and security.

More than 1,000 library staff members throughout each of the three library systems will receive specialized training on online privacy and digital security in spring and summer 2018. Curriculum developed during the course of this project will build on the work done through the Data Privacy Project and will leverage resources developed by the Library Freedom Project, Mozilla Foundation, Tactical Tech, and others. Curricula, toolkits, and facilitation guides will be available for use by the wider librarian, educator, and technologist communities at the conclusion of this project.

“Now more than ever, New Yorkers need resources to protect themselves as they access the Internet,” said Miguel Gamiño, Jr., New York City Chief Technology Officer. “This initiative is a critical component of the City’s mission to safeguard privacy and security as we continue to expand internet access to all New Yorkers. I commend all of the library systems and METRO for launching this incredible program.”

“Threats to digital privacy are rampant,” said Brooklyn Public Library President and CEO Linda E. Johnson. “It is essential our librarians have the tools and knowledge to help our patrons use computers and other devices safely. Brooklyn Library Public is proud to be part of this critical new initiative on data security.”

“Libraries are universally trusted resources that provide a safe harbor during difficult times,” said Tony Marx, President of NYPL. “NYPL is grateful to be partnering with our fellow library systems, the City, and METRO to ensure all New Yorkers have the knowledge they need to confidently navigate the World Wide Web safely and securely.”

“This initiative will help library staff deliver a higher level of service by showing our customers how to stay safe online,” said Queens Library President and CEO Dennis M. Walcott. “We are grateful to the Mayor’s Office and the Metropolitan New York Library Council for recognizing the power of libraries to promote digital literacy to anyone who seeks it.”

“We are absolutely thrilled to partner with our colleagues at New York City’s three library systems as well as with the City of New York” said Nate Hill, director of METRO. “As recent events have shown, privacy and security online are incredibly important issues. We know libraries are incredibly well-positioned to act as a resource to help the public protect their data.”

Administrative support for this effort is provided by Metropolitan New York Library Council. The program’s advisory council includes representatives from Mozilla Foundation, Data & Society, the New America Foundation, and the Library Freedom Project.

About the Mayor’s Office of the Chief Technology Officer

The Mayor’s Office of the Chief Technology Officer (MOCTO) is committed to ensuring that technology is integrated into the lives of New Yorkers in a manner that enhances quality of life, improves the delivery of City services, and advances Mayor de Blasio’s vision to make New York the most tech-friendly, forward-thinking, and equitable city in the world.

About Brooklyn Public Library

Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) is an independent library system for the 2.5 million residents of Brooklyn. It is the fifth largest library system in the United States with 60 neighborhood libraries located throughout the borough. BPL offers free programs and services for all ages and stages of life, including a large selection of books in more than 30 languages, author talks, literacy programs and public computers. BPL’s eResources, such as eBooks and eVideos, catalog information and free homework help, are available to customers of all ages 24 hours a day at our website:

About Queens Library

Founded in 1896, Queens Library transforms lives by cultivating intellectual and personal growth and building strong communities. With a long history of innovation in serving the most diverse county in the United States, Queens Library – one of New York City’s three public library systems – comprises 61 community libraries, a Central Library, seven Adult Learning Centers, a Teen Library and two Family Literacy Centers. In addition to its core library services of collections, archiving and research, Queens Library offers a comprehensive range of literacy, educational, vocational, employment, health, cultural, recreational and social services programming.

About The New York Public Library

The New York Public Library is a free provider of education and information for the people of New York and beyond. With 92 locations—including research and branch libraries—throughout the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island, the Library offers free materials, computer access, classes, exhibitions, programming and more to everyone from toddlers to scholars, and has seen record numbers of attendance and circulation in recent years. The New York Public Library serves more than 18 million patrons who come through its doors annually and millions more around the globe who use its resources at To offer this wide array of free programming, The New York Public Library relies on both public and private funding. Learn more about how to support the Library at


Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO) is a non-profit organization where New York’s libraries and archives come together to learn, share ideas, and collaborate. We work with our membership to develop and maintain essential services throughout New York City and Westchester County. METRO is the most populous of nine reference and research resource councils, known as the Empire State Library Network (ESLN), in New York State.

For more information about this iniative, please contact Davis Erin Anderson, Program Manager - Technology, Culture, and Libraries, METRO at [email protected] or by phone at 212-228-2320 x. 7122.