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A Cookie is a small text-based file given to you by a visited website that contains a small amount of information. Also known as HTTP cookies, web cookies or browser cookies, they are passed between the website and a browser. The website uses this information to remember things you have done on the website.

On the Royal Holloway website we use a small number of cookies as follows:

ASP.net cookie

A unique, randomly generated number assigned to every visitor. It effectively lets a site know that it's communicating with the same browser each time a visitor does anything. No personal information is stored and it is destroyed when the browser is closed. When you revisit the site, your browser will be issued with a new one.

Google Analytics is used on almost every page of our main site. The statistics gathered help us to understand how our site is used. Google Analytics uses four cookies, none of which provide us with any personal information: 

Google Analytics cookie__utma
Each time someone visits a page they are provided with a unique ID via the __utma cookie. This is used to log the number of unique visits to a site.

Google Analytics cookie__utmb & __utmc
Only the first of these two cookies is used to establish a session; the other one is now redundant but is still written. This is used to indicate how long a user spends on any pages visited.

Google Analytics cookie__utmz
This shows how visitors were referred to a site, e.g. via a search engine, directly, a link from another website, etc. It also shows which pages were visited once there.

LivePerson is used on the pages of several departments and services. This offers live chat functionality and requires several cookies to function, most of which are set to expire when your session expires. None of these provide us with any personal information.

The following information is provided by LivePerson. You will only encounter these cookies if you choose to use the live chat services across our site:

Two cookies with this name are created for different purposes. One includes a unique ID and creation time for the whole domain; the other contains the same unique ID, last visit time and last chat time. These IDs are randomly generated.

Session key of a visit.

An acceptance test cookie.

Used for sites on the LivePerson Federation server. Details which element (container/session) is assigned to the visitor from the server.

Unique key to identify each chat session.

AddToAny is used on most web pages to provide social sharing functionality. We have configured this not to generate any tracking or marketing cookies but it does feed into our standard Google Analytics data.

AddToAny generates two cookies:

  • UVC - used to integrate with Google Analytics, marking users as a unique visitor
  • page_services - created when a user shares a page. this cookie can personalise the AddToAny service by recalling share service preferences; no personally identifiable data is ever collected.

AddThis is used on some pages to provide visitors with social interaction capabilities. We have explicitly configured our AddThis button not to use non-Analytics cookies, however, it does feed into our Google Analytics data. You can increase your privacy by opting out of their advertising system.

Interest-based advertising

These cookies allow third parties to identify what you find popular, allowing a more personalised selection of advertisements to be displayed when you browse the internet. They normally won't be just from us. It will build an overall, but anonymous, picture of your preferences based on how you browse the internet, to deliver more relevant advertising.

Third party: Google Ads
Description: Manages display advertising around the site, and gathering data for targeted advertising http://www.google.com/policies/privacy/ads/

Further reading:

Useful Links*:

*Royal Holloway does not endorse, or take responsibility for the installation of any browser add-ons listed here. The links to add-ons and other sources of information on third-party sites are for information purposes only, and are used at your own risk.


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