What are cookies?
Cookies are small text files that hold information. Websites place them on devices like computers and mobile phone when people visit websites or use apps. They can be used for:
- enabling the website to work correctly
- gathering anonymous data used to report on website
- marketing campaign performance
- targeting adverts
The website or app that placed the cookie file can access the data they contain and allow other websites and apps to use them. Cookies do not identify you or contain sensitive information like addresses, names or payment details.
For more information about cookies visit Your Online Choices and the UK regulator, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).
First and third-party cookies
Some cookies are set by the website or app you’re visiting. These are called ‘first party’ cookies. Others may be set by a third-party organisation when you use a website or app. For example, they could be set by a tool built into the website to gather data about how the website is performing, or by an advertising platform that’s used to bring visitors to the website by a marketing team.
Some cookies only exist for a short period of time of a device and are automatically deleted within minutes or hours. Others last for longer. These are called ‘persistent cookies’, and some exist for years unless manually deleted. These can be used to analyse many visits to a website over time or to customise the content that’s displayed – for example to enable a login feature for existing customers.
Strictly Necessary Cookies
These cookies are needed to make sure our websites or apps work – for example allowing you to buy online, create an account , login to your account etc. Without them you might not be able to buy the cover or get the information you’ve asked for.
- Amazon AWS – enables load balancing of servers
- “Device” Cookie – Enables loading of CSS files and fonts
- “EVGA” Cookie – Enables loading of CSS files and fonts
- Google Test Cookie – tests if the browser accepts cookies
- Optimizely – used to display content to all visitors, including sales offers, and to run split tests
- Trustpilot – enables display of Trustpilot reviews within websites
- Vimeo – drops cookies from CDN Cloudflare where a video is embedded into a page
- YouTube – drops cookies where a video is embedded into a page to enable server load balancing
- Zendesk – enables functionality of web chat, support FAQs and contact forms.
- WordPress Test Cookie – tests if the browser accepts cookies
These cookies add extra features to an app or website.
- Add This – enables sharing of page links via social media
- Optin Monster – provides features to convert site visitors into customers or to join email lists via on site pop-ups and other mechanisms
These allow us to capture data about how people use our websites and apps, including technical performance and whether someone has called us.
- AppsFlyer – used on websites and within apps to analyse the performance of marketing campaigns that drive downloads of apps.
- Content Squared – enables analysis of website use, including anonymous session capture, to enable analysis of website usage and improvements to site design and functionality.
- Freespee – serves dynamic phone numbers per visitors to enable analysis of the sources of calls and their outcomes
- Google Analytics including Google Firebase – enables analysis of website and app usage and of marketing campaigns, including identifying improvements to site design and functionality
- Google Analytics Crashlytics – captures details of app issues and crashes for reporting analysis purposes
- Salesforce and Force.com – enables Salesforce reporting functionality of website and marketing campaign performance
- Matomo ARM – enables analysis of website usage and TV advertising campaigns
- Sentry.io – error monitoring and reporting tool that helps developers track and fix errors and performance issues in apps.
- Microsoft Clarity – enables analysis of website usage, including anonymous session capture, to enable analysis of website usage and improvements to site design and functionality.
Targeting Cookies – also known as advertising cookies
These cookies are used to find out how marketing campaigns are performing and to target advertising across the web. They are all third-party cookies.
Some of these collect information about online habits (online behavioural advertising), like which sites you visit. We (or third parties and advertising networks on our behalf) may then use this information to make sure you see ads that are relevant to you across the Internet.
- Doubleclick including Search Ads 360 – enables analysis of marketing campaigns and the targeting of adverts across the web based on site usage and online behaviour
- Facebook – enables analysis of marketing campaigns and the targeting of adverts across the web, including Meta’s social media platforms, based on site usage and online behaviour
- Google Ads – enables analysis of marketing campaigns and the targeting of adverts across the web based on site usage and online behaviour
- Google Analytics Advertising Features – features within Google Analytics that enable advertising features (see below)
- Microsoft Ads and Bing Ads – enables analysis of marketing campaigns and the targeting of adverts across the web based on site usage and online behaviour
- Partnerize – enables analysis of affiliate marketing campaigns
- Stackadapt – enables analysis of marketing campaigns and the targeting of display, video and native adverts across the web based on site usage and online behaviour
- Taboola – enables analysis of marketing campaigns and the targeting of native adverts across the web based on site usage and online behaviour
- TikTok – enables analysis of TikTok campaigns and the targeting of adverts across the TikTok platform
Targeting Cookies – Google Analytics Advertising Features
One of the tools we use on our website and in our apps is Google Analytics. This is a web analytics service that helps us understand how you use our website and what improvements to make. Google Analytics also helps us to target our advertising. Some of the features we use include:
- Remarketing with Google Analytics
- Google Display Network Impression Reporting
- Google Analytics Demographics and Interest Reporting
- Integrated services that require Google Analytics to collect data for advertising purposes, including the collection of data via advertising cookies and identifiers
Other Cookie Opt Out Links
As well as the opt-out feature Google offers above, several other platforms offer options to control ad targeting and cookies:
Your Ad Choices
The Network Advertising Initiative
Bing – https://advertise.bingads.microsoft.com/en-us/resources/policies/personalized-ads
Facebook – https://en-gb.facebook.com/help/146952742043748
Twitter – https://help.twitter.com/en/safety-and-security/privacy-controls-for-tailored-ads
AdRoll – http://www.youronlinechoices.com/uk/your-ad-choices
Links to other websites
We sometimes link to other sites to give you extra information or services. We take no responsibility for the privacy and cookie policies of external sites or apps. You should read their policies to find out what information they collect and how they use it.
Date of publishing: 24/03/2023