Manuscripts should be reviewed with due respect for the privacy of the authors. By submitting their manuscripts for review, authors entrust the editorial board with the results of their scientific work and creative efforts, which their reputation and career may depend on. Authors' rights may be violated if confidential information is disclosed during the review of manuscripts. Reviewers also have a privacy right that the editor must ensure. Confidentiality can be violated if dishonesty or fraud occurs, but in other cases it is necessary to adhere to it.
The editors should not disclose information about manuscripts (including their receipt, content, status in the process of review, criticism of reviewers or final decision) to other persons other than authors and reviewers. This includes requests to use materials for lawful activities.
The editors should clearly explain to their reviewers that the manuscripts submitted for review are the privileged and private property of the authors. Therefore, reviewers and editorial board should respect the authors' rights by not publicly discussing their work or appropriating their ideas prior to the publication of the manuscript. Reviewers are not allowed to make copies of manuscripts for their files, nor are they allowed to transfer them to others, except with the permission of the editor. Reviewers must return or destroy copies of manuscripts after providing feedback. The editors should not keep copies of rejected manuscripts.
Reviewers' comments may not be published or otherwise made public without the permission of the reviewer, author, and editor.
Opinions vary as to whether reviewers should remain anonymous. Authors should consult the Information for Authors of the journal which they choose to submit a manuscript to determine if the reviews are anonymous. If comments are not signed, the identity of the reviewers should not be revealed to the author or anyone else without the permission of the reviewers.
Some journals publish reviewers’ comments along with the manuscript. This procedure is not allowed without the consent of the authors and reviewers. However, the reviewers' comments are sent to other reviewers of the same manuscript, thereby helping the reviewers understand the review process. Reviewers can also be notified of an editor's decision to accept or reject the manuscript.