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Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Your privacy - how cookies are used by Directgov

Directgov uses small amounts of data stored on your computer called 'cookies' to collect information about how visitors use the website. You can control what cookies, if any, are stored on your computer. Find out more about cookies and what Directgov does with them.

What a cookie is

A cookie is a small amount of data sent to your computer or mobile phone from a website. It often includes a unique identifier and is stored on your device's hard drive. Directgov doesn't use cookies to collect information that can be used to identify you.

Each website can send its own cookie to your browser if your browser's preferences allow it. Your browser is the computer program you use to access the internet. By default, your browser will only allow a website to access the cookies it's already sent to you, and not the cookies sent to you by any other website. This is to protect your privacy.

Services that need cookies to work

Some services (like the benefits adviser and schools finder) need to store a cookie on your computer for them to work. These cookies are removed when you finish using the service. If cookies are blocked then these services will not work.

Controlling what cookies are stored on your computer

You can set your devices to:

  • accept all cookies
  • tell you when a cookie is being received
  • not receive cookies

Each browser is different, so check the 'Help' menu of your browser to learn how to change your cookie preferences.

Rejecting cookies

If you want to restrict or block the cookies set by Directgov you can do this through your browser settings. The 'Help' menu in your browser should explain how you can do this, as well as how to delete cookies from your computer. For more information, see the 'About cookies' website.

Mobile phones - rejecting cookies

For information about how to reject cookies on your mobile phone's browser, see your handset manual.

What Directgov uses cookies and other information for

Information supplied by cookies helps Directgov analyse the profile of visitors to the website. This helps Directgov improve the content, relevance and design of the website.

Other data used by independent companies

Directgov also uses independent measurement and research companies. They gather information about visitors using cookies, log file data and code embedded on the website. None of this information can be used to identify you.

All independent companies Directgov uses are strictly required not to use any information for their own business or any other purposes.

Cookies on Directgov from other companies

During your visit to Directgov you may notice some cookies that are not related to Directgov. This happens when you visit a page with content embedded from a third party (for example YouTube videos). These websites may place cookies on your computer.

Directgov does not control how a third party uses their cookies. You should check these third party websites' privacy policies for more information about their cookies if you are concerned about this.

Cookies on Directgov from social networking websites

Directgov has links at the bottom of website pages so you can use social networking websites (eg Facebook and Twitter) with Directgov. These websites may place cookies on your computer. To find out more, see 'How do you use this toolbar?'.

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Additional links

Online benefits advice

If you need advice on benefits, pensions and credits, see what you might get by using the online calculator

Jobseeker's Allowance online

If you need to apply for Jobseeker's Allowance, do it online at a time that suits you

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