If you only read the Communities Wiki website, no more information is collected than is typically collected in server logs by web sites in general.
If you contribute to the Communities Wiki, you are publishing every word you post publicly. If you write something, assume that it will be retained forever. Some limited exceptions are described below.
Simply visiting the web site does not expose your identity publicly (but see "Private logging" below).
When you edit any page in the Communities Wiki, you are publishing a document. This is a public act, and you are identified publicly with that edit as its author.
You must be logged into to publish or edit a page in the Communities Wiki.
If you are logged in, you will be identified by your user name. This may be your real name if you so choose, or you may choose to publish under a pseudonym, which would be whatever user name you selected when you created your account.
If you have not logged in, you will be identified by your network IP address. This is a series of four numbers which identifies the Internet address from which you are contacting the Communities Wiki. Depending on your connection, this number may be traceable only to a large Internet service provider, or specifically to your school, place of business, or home. It may be possible that the origin of this IP address could be used in conjunction with any interests you express implicitly or explicitly by editing articles to identify you even by private individuals.
It may be either difficult or easy for a motivated individual to connect your network IP address with your real-life identity. Therefore if you are very concerned about privacy, you may wish to log in and publish under a pseudonym.
When using a pseudonym, your IP address will not be available to the public except in cases of abuse, including vandalism of a Communities Wiki page by you or by another user with the same IP address. In all cases, your IP address will be stored on the Communities Wiki servers and can be seen by Communities administrators and by members who have been granted moderator status. Your IP address, and its connection to any usernames that share it, may be released under certain circumstances (see below).
Although your IP address is not publicly accessible (i.e. to those Communities members who are not administrators, moderators, etc.), remember to log out or disconnect yourself after each session using a pseudonym on a shared computer, to avoid allowing others to use your identity.
The Communities Web site, which includes the Communities Wiki, sets a session cookie whenever you visit the site. If you do not intend to ever log in, you may deny this cookie, but you cannot log in without it. It will be deleted when you close your browser session.
More cookies may be set when you log in, to avoid typing in your user name (or optionally password) on your next visit. You may clear these cookies after use if you are using a public machine and don't wish to expose your username to future members of the machine. You may also clear the browser cache as well.
Many aspects of the Communities Wiki interactions depend on the reputation and respect that is built up through a history of valued contributions. User passwords are the only guarantee of the integrity of a user's edit history. All members are encouraged to select strong passwords and to never share them. No one shall knowingly expose the password of another user to public release either directly or indirectly.
Every time you visit a web page, you send a lot of information to the web server. Most web servers routinely maintain access logs with a portion of this information, which can be used to get an overall picture of what pages are popular, what other sites link to this one, and what web browsers people are using. It is not the intention of Bentley to use this information to keep track of legitimate users.
These logs are used to produce site statistics -- the raw log data is not made public.
Log data may be examined by developers in the course of solving technical problems and in tracking down badly-behaved web spiders that overwhelm the site. IP addresses of users, derived either from those logs or from records in the database are frequently used to correlate usernames and network addresses of edits in investigating abuse of the Communities Wiki including the suspected use of malicious "sockpuppets" (duplicate accounts), vandalism, harassment of other users, or disruption of the Communities Wiki.
It is Bentley's policy that personally identifiable data collected in the server logs or through records in the database may be released by the system administrators or members with moderator status in the following situations:
Bentley policy does not permit public distribution of such information under any circumstances, except as described above.
Except where otherwise specified, all text added to Communities Wiki is available for reuse under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License.
Bentley will not sell or share private information, such as email addresses, with third parties, unless you agree to release this information, or it is required by law to release the information.
Bentley makes no guarantee against unauthorized access to any information you provide. This information may be available to anyone with access to the servers.
Data on users, such as the times at which they edited and the number of edits they have made, are publicly available via the "View Previous Versions" link on each Wiki page and in aggregated forms published by other users.
Once created, user accounts will not be removed unless requested by that member or reasonable necessity dictates. It may be possible for a username to be changed, but Bentley does not guarantee that a name will be changed on request.
Whether specific user information is deleted is dependant on the deletion policies of the project that contains the information.
Removing text from Communities Wiki does not permanently delete it. In normal articles, anyone can look at a previous version and see what was there. If an article is "deleted", any member with "administrator" access on the Communities Wiki, meaning almost anyone trusted not to abuse the deletion capability, can see what was deleted. Information can be permanently deleted by those people with access to the servers, but there is no guarantee this will happen except in response to legal action.