Privacy and Cookies
What are 'cookies'?
'Cookies' are small text files that are stored by the browser (for example, Internet Explorer or Chrome) on your computer or mobile phone. They allow websites to store things like user preferences. You can think of cookies as providing a 'memory' for the website, so that it can recognise you when you come back and respond appropriately.
A visit to a page on the TCA website may generate the following types of cookie:
Site performance cookies
This type of cookie remembers your preferences for tools found on the TCA website, so you don't have to re-set them each time you visit.
Anonymous analytics cookies:
Every time someone visits our website, software provided by another organisation generates an 'anonymous analytics cookie'.
These cookies can tell us whether or not you have visited the site before.
Your browser will tell us if you have these cookies and, if you don't, we generate new ones.
This allows us to track how many individual users we have, and how often they visit the site.
Unless you are signed in to the TCA, we cannot use these cookies to identify individuals. We use them to gather statistics, for example, the number of visits to a page. If you are logged in, we will also know the details you gave to us for this, such as your username and email address.
These cookies are used by software which tries to work out what country you are in from the information supplied by your browser when you click on a web page. This cookie is completely anonymous, and we only use it to help target our content – such as whether you see – and advertising.
When you register with the TCA, we generate cookies that let us know whether you are signed in or not.
Our servers use these cookies to work out which account you are signed in with, and if you are allowed access to a particular service. It also allows us to associate any comments you post with your username.
If you have not selected 'keep me signed in', your cookies get deleted when you either close your browser or shut down your computer.
While you are signed into either of the sites, we combine information from your registration cookies with analytics cookies, which we could use to identify which pages you have seen on the TCA.
These cookies allow us to know whether or not you've seen an advert or a type of advert, and how long it is since you've seen it.
We also set anonymous cookies on certain other sites that we advertise on. If you receive one of those cookies, we may then use it to identify you as having visited that site if you later visit the TCA. We can then target our advertising based on this information.
Third party advertising cookies
On some pages of our website, other organisations may also set their own anonymous cookies. They do this to track the success of their application, or to customise the application for you. Because of how cookies work, our website cannot access these cookies, nor can the other organisation access the data in cookies we use on our website.
For example, when you share an article using a social-media sharing button (for example, Facebook) on the TCA, the social network that has created the button will record that you have done this.
How do I turn cookies off?
It is usually possible to stop your browser accepting cookies, or to stop it accepting cookies from a particular website. However, we cannot tell if you are signed in without using cookies, so you would not be able to post comments.
All modern browsers allow you to change your cookie settings. You can usually find these settings in the 'options' or 'preferences' menu of your browser. To understand these settings, the following links may be helpful, or you can use the 'Help' option in your browser for more details.
Cookie settings in Internet Explorer
Cookie settings in Firefox
Cookie settings in Chrome
Cookie settings in Safari web and iOS.
If you would like to find out more about cookies and their use on the Internet, you may find the following links useful:
Microsoft Cookies guide
All About Cookies
For further legal information about privacy issues, you may find these links useful:
Data Protection Act 1998
The Information Commissioner's Office