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Welcome to our Privacy site. You'll also find Privacy Impact Assessment Summaries for the systems we manage as well as links to the rules and procedures which guide our implementation of the privacy provision of the e-Government Act of 2002. Here you'll find the link to our Web Privacy Notice which outlines how we collect, maintain, use and disseminate information. You'll also find Privacy Impact Assessments for the systems we manage as well as links to the rules and procedures which guide our implementation of the privacy provision of the e-Government Act of 2002.
Last Updated: July 1, 2012
Here is how we handle information about your visit to our website:
If you visit our site to read or download information, we collect and store the following information about your visit:
This information is primarily collected for statistical analysis and technical improvements to the site. This government computer system uses software programs to create summary statistics, which may be used for such purposes as assessing what information is of most and least interest, determining technical design specifications, and identifying system performance or problem areas. When required by law or security related necessity, we may take additional steps to identify you based on collected information and we may share this information with other government agencies.
You do not have to provide any personal information to visit this website. If you choose to provide us with personal information, such as by sending a message to an email address on this website or by filling out a form and submitting it through our website, we will use that information to respond to your message or to fulfill the stated purpose of the communication. If you submit your resume to us electronically we will use your personal information to consider your application for employment. OPM does not collect, use, or sell information for commercial marketing. We may share information you give us with contractors acting on our behalf or with another government agency if your inquiry relates to that agency. In other limited circumstances, such as responses to requests from Congress and private individuals, we may be required by law to disclose information you submit. If you provide comments in response to a request for public comments we may make those comments as well as your identity available to the public in a publication or by posting them on our website. Where possible we may give you more specific guidance at the point of collection regarding how your personal information may be used or disclosed.
Electronically submitted information is maintained and destroyed according to the principles of the Federal Records Act and the regulations and records schedules of the National Archives and Records Administration and in some cases may be covered by the Privacy Act and subject to the Freedom of Information Act. View a discussion of your rights under these laws. Remember, email is not necessarily secure against interception. If your communication is sensitive or includes personal information you may prefer to send it by postal mail instead.
"Cookies" are small bits of text which are either used for the duration of a session ("session cookies"), or saved on a user's hard drive in order to identify that user, or information about that user, the next time the user logs on to a website ("persistent cookies"). OPM and its program sites may use Tier 1, Tier 2, and Tier 3 cookies as defined in the Office of Management and Budget memorandum guidance.
OPM utilizes web measurement technology in order to improve our website and provide a better user experience for our customers. The Office of Management and Budget classifies this as a Tier 2 usage, since we are utilizing a multi-session web measurement technology that does not collect any personally identifiable information (PII). This technology anonymously tracks how visitors interact with opm.gov, including where they came from, what they did on the site, and whether they completed any pre-determined tasks while on the site.
This technology is provided by Google Analytics and the information collected is used to optimize our website; helping us determine top tasks, improve our user interface and diversify our content offerings to meet the needs of our customers. No personally identifiable information is collected, so the anonymity of the end user is protected. The measurement data that is collected is only retained for as long as is needed for proper analysis and optimization of the website and is accessible only to employees whose position necessitates it.
Since disabling this web measurement technology requires modifying individual browser settings it is enabled by default. If you wish to opt-out of this technology, you can use these step-by-step instructions for changing your settings.
Google also provides a browser plug-in that will allow you to opt-out of all Google Analytics measurements. Please note that opting-out in no way affects your access to content within opm.gov or how you see the site.
OPM may make very limited use of some Tier 3 persistent cookies to allow cross session and website authentication. OPM will make notice of the use of such technologies on the application or websites employing them and inform the user to opt-in to allow the Tier 3 cookie to be set before engaging OPM. OPM does not make use of any persistent cookies, which can be accessed by third party entities.
OPM participates in open, un-moderated forums offered by commercial social networks sites in order to increase government transparency, promote public participation and encourage collaboration with the Agency. OPM currently maintains official accounts on Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, and Twitter. OPM also engages in the use of social bookmarking applications such as AddThis. OPM does not control, moderate or endorse the comments or opinions provided by visitors to these sites. In addition, the Agency does not collect, maintain or disseminate information posted there.
For site security purposes and to ensure this service remains available to all users, this Government computer system employs software programs to monitor network traffic to identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information, or otherwise cause security related problems. Anyone using this system expressly consents to such monitoring and is advised if such monitoring reveals evidence of possible abuse or criminal activity, such evidence may be provided to appropriate law enforcement officials. Unauthorized attempts to upload or change information on this server are strictly prohibited and may be punishable by law, including the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986 and the National Information Infrastructure Protection Act of 1996.
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The availability of information, from personal information to public information, is made all the easier today due to technological changes in computers, digitized networks, internet access, and the creation of new information products. The E-Government Act of 2002 recognized these advances also have important ramifications for the protection of personal information contained in government records and systems. The Act mandates an assessment of the privacy impact of any substantially revised or new Information Technology System. The document resulting from these mandated assessments is called a Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA). Select from the listing of systems below to view the current PIA.
This agency has governmentwide responsibility for various systems of records maintained on Federal employees. Below is guidance we issue on the access and use of Federal personnel records.
OPM's Governmentwide Systems of Records and Proposed New Routine Uses, 71 FR 35342 (Federal Register June 19, 2006). Other parts of the Federal Register are available at the National Archives and Records Administration web site.
The following links reflect internal OPM directives, statutes, OPM regulations, and OMB guidance which have been issued to assist Federal agencies in the protection of personally identifiable information in Federal records and collected on Federal websites.