Policy Document

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DOT Website Linking Policy

Evaluation Criteria

Prior to posting a link, the Department of Transportation (DOT) evaluates the link to determine if it meets one of the following criteria:

  • The link is to an official U.S. Federal government Web site.
  • The link is to a Web site that provides official U.S. government information or services.
  • The link is to a Web site with content that complements existing information, products, and services on the DOT site where it is posted.

In addition, all links on DOT Web sites must meet all of the following criteria:

  • The Web site being linked has content that is relevant, useful, and authoritative for citizens, businesses, and/or government officials.
  • The Web site being linked has information that appears to be accurate and current.
  • The Web site being linked has a posted privacy policy that clearly describes the organization’s information handling practices.
  • The Web site being linked is "user-friendly”.

Links to Government Web sites

DOT may post links to any government Web site that is publicly available unless directed not to by the agency that owns the site. Federal government-owned or sponsored Web sites will generally have .gov, .mil or .fed.us domains, however, some may occasionally end in .com, .org or .net. DOT may also link to Web sites created by public or private sector partnerships with the federal government, and state and local government Web sites.

Links to Non-Government Web sites

In rare instances, DOT Web sites will contain links to non-government owned or sponsored Web sites, provided these sites provide government information and/or services in a way that is not available on an official government Web site. DOT Web sites provide these links as a public service to allow Web visitors to obtain information or services related to the site they are visiting.

The U.S. government, including the Department of Transportation, neither endorses nor guarantees in any way the external organizations, services, advice, or products included in these Web site links. Furthermore, the U.S. government neither controls nor guarantees the accuracy, relevance, timeliness, or completeness of the information contained in non-government Web site links. (See Disclaimer of Endorsement more information on this topic.)

Prohibitions

DOT Web sites will not link to any Web site that exhibits hate, bias, or discrimination. Furthermore, DOT reserves the right to deny or remove any link that contains misleading information or unsubstantiated claims, or is determined to be in conflict with DOT’s mission or policies.

Disclaimer of Endorsement

The information posted on DOT Web sites may include hypertext links or pointers to information created and maintained by other public and/or private organizations. DOT provides these links and pointers solely for our users' information and convenience. When users select a link to an outside Web site, they are leaving the DOT Web site and are subject to the privacy and security policies of the owners/sponsors of the outside Web site.

  • The Department of Transportation does not control or guarantee the accuracy, relevance, timeliness, or completeness of information contained on a linked Web site.
  • The Department of Transportation does not endorse the organizations sponsoring linked Web sites, and we do not endorse the views they express or the products/services they offer.
  • The Department of Transportation cannot authorize the use of copyrighted materials contained in linked Web sites. Users must request such authorization from the sponsor of the linked Web site.
  • The Department of Transportation is not responsible for transmissions users receive from linked Web sites.
  • The Department of Transportation does not guarantee that outside Web sites comply with Section 508 (Accessibility Requirements) of the Rehabilitation Act.
Updated: Sunday, March 11, 2012