Using Survey Monkey in Biomedical and Social Science Research

In one of my many ‘hats’, I chair the Research Ethics Board at North York General Hospital.We have recently instituted a policy regarding the use of the Survey Monkey for the collection of data.As many people who use Survey Monkey assume they are answering anonymously, the US government may be able to link their IP address to the data they submit under access authorized under the US Patriot Act.We have required all researchers using Survey Monkey to add the following to the first page of their survey.”No personal identifiers will be collected on the survey but it is possible that the views and opinions you expressed may be accessed and linked to you without your knowledge or consent by the U.S. government under the U.S. Patriot Act.In an effort to maintain anonymity, during the design of the this survey, the option to collect your computer IP address has been disabled.”Feel free to distribute this wording as needed.