Information we collect

See what information we collect when you use our services online or in person at a licensing office.

The type of information we collect may vary depending on the type of service.

Personally identifiable information

Personally identifiable information (PII) is information that can distinguish or trace someone's identity. Personal information includes such things as your name, address, and phone number. We don’t count some basic information as PII, such as vehicle accidents, driving violations, or whether you have a driver or professional license.

We only collect PII online when you provide it to us voluntarily by:

  • Using one of our web-based applications, such as License eXpress
  • Completing an online form
  • Sending us an email
  • Taking a survey
  • Including it when you ask our chatbot questions
  • Mentioning it when you call us on the phone

You may choose not to contact us by email or to provide any PII using an online form or survey.

If you choose to provide PII, we may store this information.

Children under 13

The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) governs information gathering online from or about children under the age of 13. Our websites are not designed for, or intentionally targeted at, children 13 years of age or younger. We do not intentionally collect or keep data about anyone under the age of 13 without a parent’s or guardian’s permission.

Online services

We collect information you submit through online services like:

  • Renewing tabs
  • Updating ID card information
  • Pre-applying for a first driver license
  • Reporting a vehicle sale
  • Applying for a professional license

Maintaining this information is the main reason our agency exists. Our purpose is “Helping every Washington resident live, work, drive, and thrive.” That starts with ensuring we have accurate and well-protected information.

While you are using one of our online applications, such as License eXpress, we may record not just what you type, but also where you click on our pages. This helps us understand where our customers have trouble and enables us to improve our applications.

Survey responses

We use surveys to collect feedback on our services and websites. These include the “Was this information helpful?” (yes or no buttons) at the bottom of many of our web pages, and the “Tell us how we’re doing” after you complete a task online.

If you volunteer information to us through a survey, we may:

  • Use the information you leave to respond to issues and improve our services
  • Forward your concerns to our customer care center or civil rights coordinator for appropriate action

We're required to keep this information only as long as it's useful and then destroy it. We follow the records retention schedules published by the State Archives. These schedules change from time to time.

Chatbot conversations

We offer a chatbot on our web pages to give you an option for asking questions.

If you volunteer information to us by asking the chatbot questions, we may:

  • Use the information you leave to respond to issues and further improve our services
  • Forward your concerns to our customer care center or civil rights coordinator for appropriate action

We encourage you to keep your questions general and avoid putting personally identifiable information (PII) in the chatbot. When we discover PII while reviewing data, we redact it.

Web browsing data

Our websites

As the Washington State Department of Licensing, we own and manage websites containing

We work with contractors to manage specialty sites like

We secure online services on special servers. When you follow a link from to a secured server, you’ll see an address that begins with:


Google Analytics

When you browse our websites, we collect information through Google Analytics. We can’t see browsing data for individual users. Google Analytics removes information that identifies you from the data it gathers. This information we can see includes:

  • Context information like:
    • General locations based on IP addresses (This isn't more precise than an approximate city)
    • Languages browsed in
    • Types of devices and browsers
    • Basic demographic information, like approximate age and gender
  • Behavior information like:
    • When visits happened, and how long they lasted
    • Pages viewed
    • Links clicked on
  • How visitors got to our site:
    • Addresses of websites that link to ours
    • Search terms entered
    • Social network referrals (like Facebook or Twitter links to our site)

We cannot identify you (or an individual user) through analytics information, and we will not combine analytics information with other data sets in a way that would identify who you are.

We do not store your personal information through Google Analytics (like your name or address).


When you visit our website, we create a session cookie on your device and destroy it as soon as you close your browser. Our Google Analytics setup creates first-party (persistent) cookies on your device to:

  • Distinguish unique users (These last for up to 2 years if you never clear your cookies)
  • Throttle the request rate (These last for up to 1 minute)

Using persistent cookies creates a better experience for you while using this site. Our web pages will work without them, but you may have trouble completing online tasks with us if you have cookies disabled.

Read more about cookies and how to disable them.

Social media

We have accounts on FacebookTwitterInstagramYouTubeLinkedIn, and a blog. We use these sites to engage with you. We don’t collect personally identifiable information (PII) through these sites. If you submit a question or comment to us through social media, we may reply directly to you on that site. We don’t track or record any information about individuals who use or interact with us on those platforms.

Calls recorded for quality assurance 

Like many organizations, we record phone calls to see if we're providing good customer service. If you want to opt out of these recordings, you can press a button on your phone while your call is being routed, or ask the customer service representative to turn off recording. We only keep the recording files for a limited time, and only a small group of managers, analysts, and technicians can access them.

Need additional help? Here's how to contact us:

(TTY: Call 711)
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