What are cookies?
Cookies are small pieces of data stored in text files that are stored on your computer or other devices when websites are loaded in a browser. They are widely used to “remember” you and your preferences, either for a single visit (through a “session cookie”) or for multiple repeat visits (using a “persistent cookie”). They ensure a consistent and efficient experience for visitors and perform essential functions such as allowing users to register and remain logged in. Cookies may be set by the site that you are visiting (known as “first party cookies”), or by third parties, such as those who serve content or provide advertising or analytics services on the website (“third party cookies”). Both websites and HTML emails may also contain other tracking technologies such as “web beacons” or “pixels.” These are typically small transparent images that provide us with statistics for similar purposes as cookies. They are often used in conjunction with cookies, though they are not stored on your computer in the same way. As a result, if you disable cookies, web beacons may still load, but their functionality will be restricted.
In addition, suppose you have registered for any services or you are a subscriber. In that case, it may also collect your name and email address, which may be transferred to data processors for registered user or subscriber verification purposes.
Similar technologies known as “local storage” may also be used in our Services as an alternative to cookies. This is the technology that is similar to cookies and performs very similar functions, such as caching data to enable us to improve our Services, allowing you to register for our Services, and tracking activity to help us and our advertisers to advertise to you in accordance with this policy and counting the number of people who view adverts on our Services. Where we refer to “cookies” in this policy, we mean cookies or similar technologies.
Cookies record information about your online preferences and help us to tailor our Services to your interests. In addition, the information provided by cookies can help us analyze your use of our Services and allow us to provide you with a better user experience.
In addition to cookies, our Services may also use web beacons, clear GIFs, page tags, and web bugs. These are all types of technology implemented by websites or third-party ad servers to allow them to analyze your website use and help improve your experience of the Services.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF COOKIES?
- Session cookies are only stored for the duration of your visit to a website. They are deleted from your device when you close your browser;
Persistent cookies are saved on your device for a set period of time after the browser has closed and are used where we (or a third party) need to identify you for a later browsing session.
- First-party cookies are set by the website you are visiting.
- Third-party cookies are cookies used within our services that other organizations set. These include cookies from external analytics services, which help us to understand the use of our sites, or by advertisers so that they can track the effectiveness of their advertisements. Selected social media companies can also set third-party cookies to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks, which may impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit.
WHAT ARE COOKIES USED FOR?
- Essential or ‘Strictly Necessary’ Cookies
These cookies are essential for the running of our Services. Without these cookies, parts of our websites would not function. These cookies do not track where you have been on the internet and do not remember preferences beyond your current visit, and do not gather information about you that could be used for marketing purposes. These cookies are usually session cookies that will expire when you close your browsing session.
- Functional Cookies
Functional cookies are essential to the running of our Services. They are used to remember your preferences on our websites and to provide enhanced, more personal features. The information collected by these cookies is usually anonymized, so we cannot identify you personally. Functional cookies do not track your internet usage or gather the information that could be used for selling advertising, but they do help with serving advertising. They may be set by us or by third party providers whose services we have added to our page.
- Analytical Performance and Measurement Cookies
Analytical performance cookies are used to monitor the performance of our Services, for example, to determine the number of page views and the number of unique users a website has. Web analytics services may be designed and operated by third parties. The information provided by these cookies allows us to analyze user behavior patterns. We use that information to enhance user experience or identify areas of the website that may require maintenance. The data is anonymous (i.e., it cannot be used to identify you and does not contain personal information such as your name and email address), and it is only used for statistical purposes.
- Targeting or ‘Behavioural Advertising’ Cookies
These cookies, which may be placed on your device by our trusted third-party service providers or us, remember that you have visited a website and use that information to provide you with content or advertising which is tailored to your interests. This is often called online behavioral advertising (OBA) and is done by grouping together shared interests based on web browsing history. Your web browsing history can be used to infer things about you (e.g. your age, gender etc.), and this information may also be used to make advertising on websites more relevant to you. Without these cookies, the content and advertisements you encounter may be less relevant to you and your interests.
- Social Media Cookies
These cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the site when you share our content with your friends and networks or when you engage with our content on or through a social site such as Facebook or Twitter. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites and building up a profile of your interests. This may impact the content and messages you see on other sites you visit.
- Essential and Functional Cookies
We use these cookies to enable certain online functionality, including:
- accessing your information so we can provide you with customized content and experiences or remember the last page you visited on the Services;
- identifying returning users, registrants, and subscribers allows them to be presented with a personalized version of the site;
eliminating the need for returning users to re-enter their login details;
- commenting on our sites;
- operating a shopping cart on a variety of our Services;
- maintaining your settings and authenticating your identity while you are logged in to the Services;
- to support security measures and to assist in identifying possible fraudulent or abusive activities.
- Analytical Performance and Measurement Cookies
We use these cookies to measure users’ behavior to develop our services better. By using analytics services provided by third parties such as Google Analytics and ComScore, we can analyze and measure which pages are viewed and how long and which links are followed. We can use this information to provide more content that is of interest. The data collected will generally be aggregated to provide trends and usage patterns for business analysis, site/platform improvement, and performance metrics and to inform our advertising and marketing strategies. Our cookies, or the resulting analysis, can also be shared with our business partners. We also receive similar information about visitors to the sites of our group companies and other partners.
- Targeting or ‘Behavioural Advertising’ Cookies
We use these cookies to:
- deliver content and marketing communications tailored to your interests based on information from your visit;
- manage eCommerce activities via affiliate links and associated revenue share arrangements;
- measure general user behavior across our sites and third-party sites to build a profile based on users’ browsing patterns so that third parties and we can target advertising to users that will be more relevant to their interests. This means that if, for example, users visit a page with a review about a particular product, then the cookie will collect this information and we may target adverts for that product to those users and, if users visit third party sites that are part of the same advertising network, those third parties may target adverts for the same product to those users;
- to create profiles that trusted third parties can buy to allow them to better target their advertising with more relevant content;
- display relevant advertising to you on other sites, based on your web search activity;
- keep track of the number of users who saw a particular ad or visited a particular page of one of our websites, analyse the effectiveness of our ads, and provide auditing, research and reporting for advertisers.
The trusted partners we work with in relation to targeting and behavioral advertising include third-party ad servers, ad agencies, technology vendors, providers of advertisement content, research firms and other companies that help us provide more effective advertising and offer you a more personalised experience. As your browser, app or device communicates with the third party’s servers, these companies can collect information, including your IP address, page header information, browser or device information, just as if you had requested their web page or used their apps directly.
We cannot control nor do we have access to any cookies placed on your computer by third party advertisers and sponsors.
- Social Media Cookies
The types of cookies used by these third parties and how they use their information will be governed by those companies’ privacy policies.
- Other Third Party Cookies
On some pages of our websites, you may notice that cookies have been set that are not related to ICZ. For example, when you visit a page with content embedded from a third-party service provider such as YouTube, they may set their own cookies on your device. ICZ does not control the use of these third party cookies and cannot access them due to the way that cookies work, as cookies can only be accessed by the party who originally set them. Please check the third party websites for more information about these cookies.
We also include web beacons in our emails to track the success of our marketing campaigns. This means that if you open an email from us we can see which of the pages of our websites you have visited. Our web beacons do not store additional information on your device but, by communicating with our cookies on your device, they can tell us whether our emails are opened and verify any clicks through to links or advertisements. In addition, they enable us to query whether users who do not open our emails wish to continue receiving them and to inform our advertisers in aggregate how many users have clicked on their advertisements within the email. We may also use this information for purposes including determining which of our emails are more interesting to users and for personalising email campaigns.
Where do we place cookies
We set cookies in a number of different locations across our services. These include:
- On our websites (including automattic.com, wordpress.com, vip.wordpress.com, jetpack.com, woocommerce.com, crowdsignal.com, gravatar.com, intensedebate.com, vaultpress.com, akismet.com, simplenote.com, simperium.com, leandomainsearch.com, cloudup.com, longreads.com, and happy.tools).
- In the administrative dashboards of our websites, such as Calypso and wp-admin.
- On sites we host for our users.
- On sites that use our plugins.
HOW CAN USERS MANAGE OR OPT-OUT OF COOKIES?
To opt out of cookies, it is possible to control cookies by following the steps below, however, you should be aware that you might lose some features and functionality of the website if you do so.
Cookies, including those which have already been set, can be deleted from your hard drive. You can also change the preferences/settings in your web browser to control cookies. Some internet browsers have a ‘Do Not Track or ‘DNT’ setting; this sends a signal to websites asking them not to track your browsing. The following links may be helpful:
In addition, most advertising networks offer you a way to opt out of targeted advertising. If you would like to find out more information, please visit:
In some cases, you can choose to accept cookies from the primary site but block them from third parties. You can block cookies from specific advertisers or clear out all cookies in others. Deleting or blocking cookies may reduce the functionality of the site. To learn more about how to reject cookies, visit http://www.allaboutcookies.org/ or go to the help menu within your internet browser. If you experience any problems having deleted cookies, you should contact the supplier of your web browser.
You can find out more on how to decline targeting and behavioral advertising cookies by visiting:
If you are based in the UK or European Union and would like to learn more about how advertisers use these types of cookies or to choose not to receive them, please visit www.youronlinechoices.eu, http://www.aboutads.info and https://optout.networkadvertising.org/
If you are based in the United States and would like to learn more or to opt-out of interest-based advertising please visit AboutAds.info for laptops and NAI Mobile Choices or AppChoices for mobile devices.
The Digital Advertising Alliance Canada’s (DAAC) AdChoices initiative allows you to opt-out of the use of information for interest-based advertising. For more information on this program, see https://youradchoices.ca/
The DAAC has a tool that generates a list of third-party advertising companies participating in the DAAC’s Self-Regulatory Program for Online Interest-Based Advertising and who are currently collecting data from your browser for the purposes of targeted advertising. You can use the tool to opt-out of interest-based advertising. The DAAC tool to opt-out of interest-based advertising – http://optout.aboutads.info/?c=3&lang=en
Note that opting out through these channels does not mean you will no longer see ads. You will still receive other types of ads from these companies and any type of ad from non-participating companies. The sites you visit may still collect your information for other purposes.
Please be aware that these are third-party websites, and ICZ does not accept any liability for the instructions given on these sites.
What about other tracking technologies, like web beacons?
Cookies are not the only way to recognize or track visitors to a website. We may use other, similar technologies from time to time, like web beacons (sometimes called “tracking pixels” or “clear gifs”). These are tiny graphics files that contain a unique identifier that enables us to recognize when someone has visited our Website or opened an email including them. This allows us, for example, to monitor the traffic patterns of users from one page within a website to another, to deliver or communicate with cookies, to understand whether you have come to the website from an online advertisement displayed on a third-party website, to improve site performance, and to measure the success of email marketing campaigns. In many instances, these technologies are reliant on cookies to function properly, and so declining cookies will impair their functioning.
Do you use Flash cookies or Local Shared Objects?
Websites may also use so-called “Flash Cookies” (also known as Local Shared Objects or “LSOs”) to, among other things, collect and store information about your use of our services, fraud prevention, and for other site operations.
If you do not want Flash Cookies stored on your computer, you can adjust the settings of your Flash player to block Flash Cookies storage using the tools contained in the Website Storage Settings Panel. You can also control Flash Cookies by going to the Global Storage Settings Panel and following the instructions (which may include instructions that explain, for example, how to delete existing Flash Cookies (referred to “information” on the Macromedia site), how to prevent Flash LSOs from being placed on your computer without your being asked, and (for
Flash Player 8 and later) how to block Flash Cookies that are not being delivered by the operator of the page you are on at the time).
Please note that setting the Flash Player to restrict or limit acceptance of Flash Cookies may reduce or impede the functionality of some Flash applications, including, potentially, Flash applications used in connection with our services or online content.
Do you serve targeted advertising?
Third parties may serve cookies on your computer or mobile device to serve advertising through our Website. These companies may use information about your visits to this and other websites in order to provide relevant advertisements about goods and services that you may be interested in. They may also employ technology that is used to measure the effectiveness of advertisements. They can accomplish this by using cookies or web beacons to collect information about your visits to this and other sites in order to provide relevant advertisements about goods and services of potential interest to you. The information collected through this process does not enable us or them to identify your name, contact details, or other details that directly identify you unless you choose to provide these.
Types of Cookie
The table below explains the types of cookies we use on our websites and why we use them.
|Category of cookies||Why we use these cookies|
|Required||These cookies are essential for our websites and services to perform basic functions and are necessary for us to operate certain features. These include those required to allow registered users to authenticate and perform account-related functions, store preferences set by users such as account name, language, and location, and ensure our services are operating properly.|
|Analytics and Performance||These cookies allow us to optimize performance by collecting information on how users interact with our websites, including which pages are visited most, as well as other analytical data. We use these details to improve how our websites function and to understand how users interact with them.|
|Advertising||These cookies are set by us and our advertising partners to provide you with relevant content and to understand that content’s effectiveness. They may be used to collect information about your online activities over time and across different websites to predict your preferences and to display more relevant advertisements to you. These cookies also allow a profile to be built about you and your interests and enable personalized ads to be shown to you based on your profile.|
Our Internal Analytics Tool
Consent for Advertising Cookies on Our Sites
You may see a “cookie banner” on our websites and dashboards. If you are visiting one of our sites from the EU, then we do not set or allow our ad partners to set cookies that are used to show you targeted ads before you click to accept. When you consent in this manner, we and our advertising partners may set advertising cookies on the site you are visiting and on our other websites, dashboards, and services, which we use to show you advertisements about our various ICZ products. We’ll display the banner to you periodically, just in case you change your mind.
Where can I get further information?