Terms and conditions

Terms and conditions of the Home Office website include: cookies, Crown copyright, Links to other websites, Links from other websites to the Home Office website, Privacy policy and Data Protection Act 1998.


When we provide services, we want to make them easy, useful and reliable. Where services are delivered on the internet, this sometimes involves placing small amounts of information on your device, for example, computer or mobile phone. These include small files known as cookies. They cannot be used to identify you personally.

These pieces of information are used to improve services for you through, for example:

  • enabling a service to recognise your device so you don't have to give the same information several times during one task
  • recognising that you may already have given a username and password so you don't need to do it for every web page requested
  • measuring how many people are using services, so they can be made easier to use and there's enough capacity to ensure they are fast

You can manage these small files yourself and learn more about them. More information is available on the Directgov website: Internet browser cookies - what they are and how to manage them.

Cookies for improving service

Google Analytics sets cookies to help us accurately estimate the number of visitors to the website and volumes of usage. This to ensure that the service is available when you want it and fast. The cookies used for this are listed below:

Table containing the cookies which we use to improve our service
Name Typical content Expires
_utma Randomly generated number 2 years
_utmb Randomly generated number 30 minutes
_utmc Randomly generated number When user closes browser
_utmz Randomly generated number + info on how the site was reached (e.g. directly or via a link, organic search or paid search) 6 months

For further details on the cookies set by Google Analytics, please refer to the Google Code website.

Cookies for using our website

Several cookies are set by our web servers to ensure that your session is maintained for the duration of your visit (until you close your web browser).

Table containing the cookies which are set to maintain your session on our websites
Name Typical content Expires
DCT-Legacy Randomly generated number When user closes browser
DCT-Morello Randomly generated number When user closes browser
JSESSIONID Randomly generated number When user closes browser
ho_fontsize A number representing the user’s choice of font size When user closes browser
PHPSESSID Randomly generated number When user closes browser

© Crown copyright 2011

You may use and re-use the information featured on this website (not including logos) free of charge in any format or medium, under the terms of the open government licence.

We encourage users to establish hypertext links to this website.

Pleaes send enquiries regarding the use and re-use of this information resource to psi@nationalarchives.gsi.gov.uk

Links to other websites

Please note that the Home Office takes no responsibility for the content of any of the external websites we link to from this website.


Links from other websites to the Home Office website

We encourage you to add links to the Home Office website, however please ensure you comply with the conditions below:

  • the link to us must not imply explicitly by description or implicitly by location of the link or logo on the page that the services/products/etc your organisation supplies are endorsed by the Home Office
  • if you use the Home Office logo it must be used unamended - it must not be edited
  • if you use the logo you must always include an alt tag
  • if the logo itself is used as a hyperlink, it must only link to the Home Office home page - www.homeoffice.gov.uk
  • the link to the Home Office site must not load the page into frames - the page must load into the user's entire window


 Privacy policy

The Home Office reserves the right to gather information relating to site usage. Any information gathered is primarily for internal use to allow us to refine and improve our customer service. Where disclosure of information to a third party is likely we will, where possible, endeavour to ensure that this is clearly indicated. This does not affect your statutory rights.

This site uses an online measuring package called SiteSat which uses cookies to identify repeat visits. Our site is also carrying banner advertising for government services which use cookies in order to avoid you seeing the same advertisements repeated over and over, and to allow us to gauge the number of people viewing a campaign or particular web page.

Cookies are pieces of data created when you visit a site, and contain a unique, anonymous number. They are stored in the cookie directory of your hard drive, and do not expire at the end of your session. Cookies used by the Home Office contain no personal information about the user, nor does our website elicit or store any information from users other than the Internet Protocol address of the computer used to access the site. Cookies on this site may safely be turned off by users without affecting how pages are displayed.


Data Protection Act 1998

The processing of personal data is governed by the Data Protection Act 1998, under which the Home Office is registered as a data controller.  Any personal data you provide will be held securely and in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998.  We will use your personal data for the purpose(s) in relation to which you have provided it.  We may however need to disclose personal data to a third party so that they can provide the service you have requested, or fulfil a Subject Access Request.  We may additionally need to disclose information where there is a legitimate reason for disclosure (such as a court order) but we will ensure that we always comply with the Data Protection Act.  Any information about you that we pass to a third party will be held securely by that party, in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998, and used only to provide services or information you have requested.

As a data subject you have the right to ask for a copy of personal data about you and to ask for inaccuracies to be corrected.  Queries about Home Office compliance with the Data Protection Act should be addressed to:

Information Policy Team
Information and Record Management Services
4th Floor
Seacole Building
2 Marsham Street