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Cookies & how they are used – The Church on Saville Street

What are cookies and how do they work?

A cookie is a text file containing information that can be remembered by a web browser between pages. When an individual uses a web browser to access the internet their browser can create cookies which are stored on the user’s computer. Cookies are not programs and therefore cannot contain viruses or other malicious software. They are purely a string of text and numbers.

There are two main types of cookies – session cookies and persistent cookies.

Session cookies only last during a single visit. When a user closes their web browser the session cookie information is automatically removed from their computer. The Church on Saville Street website uses session cookies for two purposes:

  1. Two session cookies are set that temporarily store a unique identifier for each visitor to the website. This identifier is a random series of letters and numbers and doesn’t contain any personal or identifiable information. It is used to help count the number of visitors to the Church on Saville Street website.
  2. Two cookies are set by the computer systems that run the Church on Saville Street website. These cookies are used as part of the process of sending web pages to the user’s web browser and are essential – no website using Microsoft technology will work without these cookies.
  3. Persistent cookies are stored by the user’s web browser even when the web browser has been closed, so that the next time a user goes back to the website that originally set the cookie, the web site can read information back from the cookie. Persistent cookies have an expiry date which controls when they are automatically deleted. This can be anything from a few minutes to several years.

The Church on Saville Street use persistent cookies for the following purposes:

  1. Google Analytics is a system used by many website to record information about who visits a website. Google set five different cookies with expiry dates ranging from 1 day to 2 years. These cookies are used mainly to differentiate between first time visitors to a website and repeat visitors. They do not contain any personally identifiable information. You can find out more about how Google use cookies at http://www.google.com/intl/en/analytics/privacyoverview.html (English only)
  2. The Church on Saville Street also use a cookie to remember a user’s website preferences such as preferred language, currency and delivery country. The first time a customer visits the Church on Saville Street website they are asked to confirm this information which is then stored in a cookie set to last for 1 year. Without this cookie the customer would have to re-enter their preferences every time they visit the website.
  3. A number of persistent cookies are also set by the computers that run the Church on Saville Street website. These cookies are solely used to record technical information necessary for our web servers to work properly. No personally identifiable information in stored in these cookies.
  4. All cookies used by The Church on Saville Street are ‘first party’ cookies. This means that any cookie set on the Church on Saville Street website can only be read back from the Church on Saville Street website. No other website is able to read or access information from any cookie set by the Church on Saville Street website. We do not use ‘third party’ cookies which would permit this sort of behaviour by other websites.

 Controlling or deleting cookies

Depending on which web browser you use it is possible to control how cookies are used, or to delete existing cookies from your computer. You can find instructions on how to control the use of cookies, or delete cookies from your computer at http://www.aboutcookies.org (English only)

Please remember that if you delete or restrict cookies from the Church on Saville Street website you may not be able to experience the full benefit of some of the features and services the website has to offer.