Data sharing agreements must include provisions on access and dissemination. It is not desirable to enter into a data-sharing agreement to disclose data protection information, as non-federal organizations are not subject to data protection law. Similarly, it is worth drawing the attention of the non-federal organization to the fact that federal authorities may be forced to disclose information under the FOIA. Data exchange is an important way to increase the capacity of researchers, scientists and policy makers to analyse data and translate it into meaningful reports and knowledge. Data sharing discourages duplication in data collection and fosters varied thinking and cooperation, as others are able to use the data to answer questions that the original data collectors may not have considered. Access rules: Whether the data is online or not, the agreement must determine who has what rights of access to the data, who has what rights to modify or modify the data and what methods of access to the data are provided. Confidentiality and exclusion of liability: there must be a disclaimer for the accuracy of the data as well as a description of the data as well as the corresponding metadata. In addition, a statement on the disclosure of information to third parties is required. This is necessary because a non-federal authority may not be able to protect USGS information from disclosure and vice versa, because the USGS may be compelled to disclose information as part of a FOIA application, unless otherwise waived. Data sharing agreements protect against misuse of data and encourage early communication between authorities on issues relating to data processing and use. The USGS Survey Manual Chapter 500.26 – Domestic Memorandum of Understanding states that «where applicable, there is a language [in the MOUs], such as: all data and information produced as a result of this Statement of Intent must be available for use by the USGS in connection with its ongoing programs.
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