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Privacy notice and terms of service for the Online SBML Validator


We, the maintainers of, know you care how information about you is used. We appreciate that you trust us to use your information carefully and sensibly. This notice describes the Online SBML Validator privacy policy.

By using the Online SBML Validator facilities of, you agree to accept the practices, limitations and disclaimers described below.

Can you avoid submitting any information?

If you prefer to have greater privacy, you can avoid using the Online SBML Validator by downloading libSBML (which contains the validation engine) and running libSBML on your own private computer. This avoids the need to enter any information to this online service or uploading any models to

What information does this service gather?

This system receives and stores any information you enter on this website, and in addition, it uses some of the information you provide directly to infer other information automatically. The following describes what we gather:

  • The Internet Protocol (IP) address from which the Online SBML Validator facility, as well as any other pages on, are accessed;
  • The date and time at which this service and any other pages are accessed;
  • The pages accessed (recorded as the file names accessed on the server);
  • Any file or SBML model you upload or paste¬†in to this validator service;
  • Any errors or warnings generated by the systems implementing this facility, including but not limited to the web server software and the Google analytics system described below;
  • All validation results arising from validating the file or SBML model, including statistics such as the length of time that validation took to perform, the errors or warnings generated by the validator, and similar data computed by the validator; and
  • If (and only if) you register for an API key, additional information is gathered and stored:
    • Your email address;
    • A name;
    • The encrypted form of a password; and
    • (If optionally provided by you) The name of the SBML-compatible software you are using in conjunction with the optional API offered by this validator service.

Does this service store your SBML model or file?

This service is implemented as a server-side facility, meaning that the computations are physically performed on our computers, which are housed at the California Institute of Technology. As a consequence, your SBML file or pasted-in text must be transmitted to, and stored temporarily on, our servers in order to process it. This online system also collects and stores the following information automatically, as described in the section titled What information does this service gather? above.

In the event that this service itself exhibits an error, the SBML Team may need to inspect the material you submitted (i.e., the SBML file or pasted-in text) to ascertain the cause of the error in the Online SBML Validator system.

Your SBML file or pasted-in text, the IP address data, and the page data will never be passed willingly to any third party, and it will be deleted after a period of time. Your SBML file/text will only be used for the purposes of validating it, for gathering general statistics about the uses of this service and SBML in general, and for debugging the service itself (and then, only if necessary). By submitting content to this validation service, you grant the SBML Team the right to use and store your file temporarily for these purposes.

Does this service use browser-based "cookies"?

The Online SBML Validator stores and reads "cookies" in your browser to implement certain functionality. These "cookies" are short data strings written in a file or database maintained by your web browser; these data are read and used automatically by software on this site. There are two types of cookies in use on this website:

  • Cookies specifically used by the Online SBML Validator: the system interface uses cookies in the following ways:
    • To determine whether you are already logged in to the validation service (if you choose to register and log in); and
    • To remember the last "tab" you had opened in the interface of the Online SBML Validator, so that when the validation system returns and displays results, the web page components can be properly restored.
  • Cookies specifically used by Google Analytics: the overall site uses Google Analytics, a web analytics service provided by Google, Inc., ("Google"). The Google system use its own set of cookies. The use of Google Analytics is described in a separate section below.

How are Google Analytics used on this website?

This website uses Google Analytics, a web analytics service provided by Google, Inc. ("Google"). Google Analytics uses cookies to help this website analyze how users use this site. The information generated by the cookies about your use of the website (including your IP address) will be transmitted to and stored by Google on servers in the United States. Google will use this information for the purpose of evaluating your use of the website, compiling reports on website activity for website operators and providing other services relating to website activity and internet usage. Google may also transfer this information to third parties where required to do so by law, or where such third parties process the information on Google's behalf. Google will not associate your IP address with any other data held by Google. You may refuse the use of cookies by selecting the appropriate settings on your browser. By using the website, including the Online SBML Validator, you consent to the processing of data about you by Google in the manner and for the purposes set out here.

Why do we ask for login and password information?

You may use most features of this online service anonymously; you are not required to register. A few features of this service use a unique identifier known as an API key in order to authenticate users to the service. This allows users to by-pass authentication checks like CAPTCHAs. In order to provide you with an API key, we ask for minimal information to help reduce spam and to provide the means for you to reset your password if needed.

By registering for an account on, you declare that you are over the age of 13 and you agree that you will not use any part of the site or its services to communicate any messages that are obscene, vulgar, sexually-oriented, hateful, threatening, or otherwise violate any laws.

Although the administrators and moderators of this site attempt to keep all objectionable content off this site, it is impossible for us to review all content created by its users. All content express the views of their authors, and neither the owners and maintainers of, nor the developers, nor the California Institute of Technology, nor any other individual or agency, nor any governments employing them, will be held responsible for the content on this site.

The maintainers of have the right to remove, edit, move or otherwise modify any account or content for any reason.

How do we use information about you and your models?

We use the information you provide, and other information we gather, in the following ways:

  • To provide the mechanisms to perform a best-effort assessment of the validity of any SBML files or models you upload or otherwise supply to this service.
  • To gather general statistics about the SBML contents uploaded to this service, for the following purposes:
    • Help us understand how the service is used,
    • Help us improve the design and implementation of this service,
    • Help us improve SBML in general as well as other services we offer on, and
    • Provide data to enable us to write articles and other reports about the use of SBML and this service.

These uses of your SBML content do not involve analyzing or interpreting the meaning of the model uploaded to this service; these processes only concern the usage of SBML. We do not need to attempt to understand what you are modeling in order to perform the analyses described above. Rest assured that we have no need or interest in trying to understand your model, or its purpose. The temporary storage of your model is only necessary to implement this validation service, and the statistics gathered on all SBML models only focus on the uses of SBML constructs.

Only the core staff members in charge of maintaining and this service will have access to these data. We will not willingly reveal identifying information, or associations between names and specific SBML models or other data, to anyone.

How do we use comments sent to us by you via email?

You may choose to provide us with personal information, as in an email containing your comments or questions. We use this information to improve our service to you or to respond to your request. There may be times when your message is forwarded, as email, to other SBML Team members or employees of the California Institute of Technology who may be better able to help you. We will not willingly share our email with any other outside organizations, unless determined necessary for security purposes or required by law.

Security notice

The website and its services are operated by employees of the California Institute of Technology ("Caltech"), as part of a federally-unded computer system used to accomplish federally-funded projects. Unauthorized attempts to defeat or circumvent security features, to use the system for other than its intended purposes, to deny service to authorized users, to access, obtain, alter, damage, or destroy information, or otherwise to interfere with the system or its operation is prohibited. Evidence of such acts may be disclosed to law enforcement authorities and may result in criminal prosecution under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986 and the National Information Infrastructure Protection Act of 1996, codified at section 1030 of Title 18 of the United States Code, or other applicable criminal laws.

The SBML Team uses software programs to monitor this website for security purposes to ensure it remains available to all users and to protect information in the system. Any and all uses of this system and all files on this system may be intercepted, monitored, recorded, copied, audited, inspected, and disclosed to authorized California Institute of Technology and law enforcement personnel, as well as authorized officials of other agencies. By accessing this website, you are expressly consenting to such interception, monitoring, recording, copying, auditing, inspection and disclosure at the discretion of the SBML Team or the California Institute of Technology. Users have no explicit or implicit expectation of privacy.

Terms of service and disclaimers is a site devoted to providing information and resources concerning the Systems Biology Markup Language (SBML). It is a free online resource. While the developers and maintainers of hope the content is useful, no one and no organization associated with the site make any claims, representations or other promises whatsoever about any aspect of the content.

No contract

The information provided on is being provided freely, and no agreement or contract is created between you and the California Institute of Technology, the individual contributors of content on, any project administrators, or anyone else who is in any way connected with this project or services. You are being granted a limited license to copy what you find on this site; it does not create or imply any contractual or extracontractual liability on the part of or any of its agents, members, organizers or other users.

No warranty and no liability

All content on is provided in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY, WITHOUT EVEN THE IMPLIED WARRANTY OF MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. Neither the California Institute of Technology, nor collaborating institutions, nor the United States Government, nor any of their employees, make any warranty, express or implied, including the warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, results, apparatus, product, or process disclosed, or represents that its use would not infringe privately owned rights. The content is on an "as is" basis, and the California Institute of Technology and any other organizations that have participated in the SBML project have no obligations to provide maintenance, support, updates, enhancements or modifications. In no event shall the California Institute of Technology or any other organizations be liable to any party for direct, indirect, special, incidental or consequential damages, including lost profits, arising out of the use of this software and its documentation, even if the California Institute of Technology or other organizations have been advised of the possibility of such damage.

No one associated with the SBML project, its hosting institutions, or anyone else, will be held liable for any breaches of privacy involving this service.

No one associated with the SBML project, its hosting institutions, or anyone else in any way whatsoever shall be held responsible for the appearance of any inaccurate, libelous, or objectionable content, or for your use of the information contained in or linked from these web pages.

No endorsements

Reference herein to any specific commercial products, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise, does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the California Institute of Technology, partner institutions, or the United States Government. The views and opinions of authors expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of the California Institute of Technology, collaborating institutions, or the United States Government, and shall not be used for advertising or product endorsement purposes.

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This page was last modified 12:23, 14 September 2017.

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