License Plate Recognition System – Data Collection and Privacy

PURPOSE: This policy establishes procedures for the collection, retention and privacy of license plate recognition data at Oregon State University (OSU).

1. General

OSU uses license plate recognition (LPR) technology to manage parking on the OSU Corvallis campus. The University’s department of Transportation Services uses vehicle-mounted systems and/or handheld devices to enforce parking. Transportation Services personnel shall be properly trained prior to using LPR equipment.

2. Data Collected

The LPR system captures two images of observed vehicles:

  1. a context image of the vehicle and its immediate surroundings, and
  2. an image of the license plate.

Images are usually taken of the rear of a vehicle, but an image of the front of a vehicle may be taken when the vehicle is backed into a parking space, parked in a driving aisle, or parked in any other way which provides better visibility of the vehicle’s front. Images taken are not of a resolution that allows for identification of vehicle occupants, if any.

Along with the images, the LPR system also records the global positioning system coordinates and date/time information of the observation. Further software processing of the license plate image generates an alphanumeric version of the license plate number which is also stored with the record. The LPR system itself does not contain individual parking patron’s account information, but may be linked to such information by Transportation Services.

3. Use of Data

The data collected by OSU’s LPR system is for parking access control and parking enforcement. LPR data is used to determine a vehicle’s access permissions in a given parking area or controlled access area of campus. LPR data are also used to support the issuance of a parking citation if needed. Transportation Services may use parking information to assist the Oregon State Police with active criminal investigations on the OSU Corvallis campus. Any use of LPR data outside of these stated purposes must be detailed documented and approved in writing by the Director of Transportation Services, and/or the OSU Vice President of Finance and Administration.

4. Data Retention

Data collected by the LPR system that does not result in a parking enforcement action and is not part of an ongoing law enforcement investigation shall be purged after 30 days. Data that results in parking enforcement action shall be retained with the citation record according to established OSU record retention policies. Data associated with an ongoing law enforcement investigation shall be retained with the investigative record according to established OSU record retention policies.

5. Access to Records

Access to records created and maintained by the LPR system is restricted to trained Transportation Services personnel. All personnel with access to the system shall use unique identifiers and passwords to access records and all login activity, record additions, and other activity is logged. Access to the system by others is prohibited.

6. Data Requests by Vehicle Owners

Registered vehicle owners may request a report detailing what, if any, records exist for their vehicle(s) in the OSU LPR system. The report may be requested in person at the Transportation Services office in the Western Building at 850 SW 35th Street, Corvallis, OR 97333. Individuals requesting a report must provide sufficient identification to establish their identity as the registered owner of the vehicle. The registered owner’s identification must contain the same address as the one on file with the Department of Motor Vehicles.

7. Public Notification

Transportation Services will notify the public of its LPR data collection activities and policies by:

  1. posting a data collection and use statement on its website.
  2. requiring parking permit buyers to indicate acceptance and understanding of this policy when purchasing a parking permit.