Privacy / Visibility

Privacy and Visibility settings allow you to manage and control access to your site. These settings can be updated from the Dashboard > Settings > Reading section of each site dashboard under the section header “Site Visibility”.

It is important to note that these privacy settings control front-end (viewing) access to sites, and do not restrict administrative or editing access. In order to configure editing access to your site, check out the documentation page for Managing Users.

There are several options for how the site privacy is configured, each of which is explained in detail below:

  • Allow search engines to index this site: This makes the site completely open to the public. Search engines can index the site, and anyone that finds the site can view it.
  • Discourage search engines from indexing this site: This adds a flag in the site code that instructs search engines NOT to crawl or index the site. All major search engines respect this (Google, Bing, Yahoo), but being un-indexed does not mean that nobody can access the site. Anyone that knows the URL of the site can still access the site directly, even though the site will not appear in search engines.
  • Visitors must have a login: Upon visiting the site URL, users are redirected to a login page, and cannot access the site without first logging in via NetID. Any member of the Northwestern community that has an active NetID can login to the site and see its content.
  • Only registered users of this site can have access: Visitors will be redirected to a login page upon trying to view the site and required to login via NetID. With this option, however, not just any NetID user can view the site by logging in – only users that you’ve explicitly added to the site (see Managing Users) will be able to view the site upon logging in.
  • Only administrators can visit: Visitors will be redirected to a login page upon trying to view the site and required to login via NetID. With this option, however, not just any NetID user can view the site by logging in – only users that you’ve explicitly added to the site with the “Administrator” role (see Managing Users) will be able to view the site upon logging in.
  • Anyone that visits must first provide this password: This option allows you to define a generic shared password that will be used to protect the site. Users will be redirected to a password entry page when visiting the site, and will be required to enter the password that you defined here. This password is the same for all users, and users are not required to have a NetID or be a user of the site in order to access the site.