PCS Plus is a trading name of PCS. Registered office: 160 Falcon Road, London, SW11 2LN, VAT registration number: 714 1436 65.
2 What is a cookie?
Cookies are small files that websites put on your computer hard disk drive when you first visit a website.
A cookie is like an identification card that's yours. Its job is to notify the site when you've returned.
Cookies tell us how often you visit pages, which helps us learn what information interests you. In this way, we can give you more of the content you like and less of the content you don't.
Cookies let you store preferences and user names, register products and services, and personalise pages.
3 Accepting and Declining Cookies
3.1 Deleting cookies using your browser
Delete Cookies in Google Chrome
- a) If you're running Google Chrome version 14 or higher, click the wrench button in the upper-right corner of the Chrome window. From there, select Options.
- b) In the navigation pane of the Options page, click Under the Hood.
- c) Under the Privacy section, click Content Settings.
- d) Click the 'All cookies and site data' button in the Content Settings window.
- e) Under the Cookies section, click All cookies and site data.
- f) When the list of cookies appears, click the Remove All button to delete all cookies stored in Chrome.
Alternatively, you can navigate to the Cookies section of your Chrome browser and click the Remove All button to delete all cookies in one fell swoop.
Delete Cookies in Firefox
- a) Make sure you're running the latest version of the Firefox browser, and then select the Firefox menu. From there, select Options and then Options again.
- b) Click the Privacy tab to bring up your user-privacy options.
- c) Under the History section, click the Remove Individual Cookies link.
- d) Click the Remove All Cookies button to zap them.
- e) At the bottom of the Cookies window that appears, click the Remove All Cookies button to delete all cookies associated with your Firefox browser.
Delete Cookies in Safari
- a) Confirm that you're running version 5 or later of Apple's Safari browser and then click the Gears menu in the upper-right corner of the Safari window. From there, select Reset Safari.
- b) In this window, check the bottom box, 'Remove all website data'.
- c) Check the bottom box, labelled Remove all website data. You can uncheck everything else if you want to remove only cookies.
- d) Click the Reset button to eliminate all cookies associated with Safari.
Delete Cookies in Internet Explorer
- a) Upgrade to the latest version of Internet Explorer. Select the Tools menu from the Internet Explorer window, and click Delete Browsing History.
- b) In the Delete Browsing History window, check the box next to Cookies. You can uncheck everything else if you want to remove only cookies.
- c) From here you can choose which parts of your browsing history to erase.
- d) Click Delete to remove all cookies stored in Internet Explorer.
- e) Congratulations, you've successfully cleaned out your browser's cookie cabinet. Although cookie files pose a potential threat to privacy, don't forget that they can also improve your Web browsing by making it faster and more convenient.
4 Logging into the website
4.1 How to block Cookies using your browser settings
If you would like to block cookies from this or any other site from being stored on your computer, you can do so using your browser's settings. The process of blocking cookies depends on the internet browser you use. Generally you need to choose Tools and then Internet Options, then Advanced options.
5.1 How to control and delete cookies
Alternatively, you may wish to visit www.allaboutcookies.org, which contains comprehensive information on how to do this on a wide variety of browsers. You will also find details on how to delete cookies from your computer as well as more general information about cookies. For information on how to do this on the browser of your mobile phone, you will need to refer to your handset manual.
Please be aware that restricting cookies will impact on the functionality of the PCS Plus website. For information on what cookies are, visit www.bbc.co.uk/webwise/guides/about-cookies.
6 Cookies used by PCS Plus
6.1 What types of cookies are used
Some of the following cookie category descriptions are taken from the International Chamber of Commerce’s “Cookie Guide”.
6.1a Strictly necessary cookies
These are used to move you around the website, to access secure areas such as the PCS Plus login and use all the website’s features.
These cookies don’t gather information about you that could be used for marketing purposes or remembering where you’ve been on the internet.
These cookies cannot be declined.
Generally these cookies will be essential ‘first party session’ cookies. Not all ‘first party session’ cookies will fall into the ‘strictly necessary’ category for the purposes of the legislation. Strictly necessary cookies will generally be used to store a unique identifier to manage and identify you as unique to other users currently viewing the web site, in order to provide a consistent and accurate service for you.
Remembering previous actions (eg entered text) when navigating back to a page in the same session.
Managing and passing security tokens to different services within a website to identify the visitor's status (eg logged in or not).
To maintain tokens for the implementation of secure areas of the website.
These cookies will not be used for gathering information that could be used for marketing to the user or remembering customer preferences or user IDs outside a single session (unless the user has requested this function).
6.1b Performance cookies
These only collect information about how you move around and use the website. They do not collect any information that identifies you.
These cookies collect information about how visitors use a website – for instance, which pages users go to most often – and if they get error messages from web pages. All information these cookies collect is anonymous and is only used to improve how a website works.
These cookies can be first or third party, session or persistent cookies. To fall within this category, their usage should be limited to performance and website improvement.
Web analytics – where the data collected is limited to the website operator’s use only, for managing the performance and design of the site. These cookies can be third party cookies but the information must be for the exclusive use of the publisher of the website visited.
Ad response rates – where the data is used exclusively for calculating response rates (click-through rates) to improve the effectiveness of advertising purchased on a site external to the destination website. If the same cookie is used to retarget adverts on a third party site this would fall outside the performance category (see 6.1d).
Affiliate tracking – where the cookie is used to let affiliates know that a visitor to a site visited a partner site some time later and if that visit resulted in the use or purchase of a product or service, including details of the product and service purchased. Affiliate tracking cookies allow the affiliate to improve the effectiveness of their site. If the same cookie is used to retarget adverts this would fall outside the performance category (see 6.1d).
Error management – measuring errors presented on a website. Typically this will be to support service improvement or complaint management and will generally be closely linked with web analytics.
Testing designs – testing variations of design, typically using A/B or multivariate testing, to ensure a consistent look and feel is maintained for the user of the site in the current and subsequent sessions.
6.1c Functionality cookies
These allow the website to remember your details, such as choices made, name, region to provide enhanced, more personal features. For instance, a website may be able to provide local weather reports or traffic news by storing in a cookie the region in which the user is currently located. These cookies can also be used to remember changes you have made to text size, fonts and other parts of web pages that you can customise.
These cookies may also be used to provide services the user has asked for, such as watching a video or commenting on a blog. The information these cookies collect may be anonymised and they cannot track a user’s browsing activity on other websites.
These cookies are used to remember customer selections that change the way the site behaves or looks. It might also include cookies that are used to deliver a specific function, but where that function includes cookies used for behavioural/targeted advertising networks they should not be included in this category.
These cookies can be first or third party, session or persistent cookies. These cookies will typically be the result of a user action, but might also be implemented in the delivery of a service not explicitly requested but offered to the user. They can also be used to prevent the user being offered a service again that had previously been offered to that user and rejected.
Remembering settings a user has applied to a website, such as layout, font size, preferences, colours etc.
Remembering a choice such as not to be asked to fill in a questionnaire again.
Detecting if a service has already been offered, such as offering a tutorial on future visits to the website.
Providing information to allow an optional service to function, such as offering a live chat session.
Fulfilling a request by the user, such as submitting a comment.
This category does not include cookies used for behavioural/targeted advertising networks.
6.1d Targeting and sharing cookies
Generally third-party cookies that do not store personal information, but do store browsing habits of the user.
These cookies collect several pieces of information about your browsing habits. They remember that a user has visited a website and this information is shared with other organisations, such as advertisers.
These organisations do this in order to provide targeted adverts more relevant to user and their interests. Quite often targeting cookies will be linked to site functionality provided by the other organisation. Without these cookies, online advertisements a user encounters will be less relevant to the user and their interests.
These cookies will usually be third-party cookies. They will always be persistent cookies. These cookies do not collect personally identifiable information, although they contain a unique key that is able to distinguish individual users' browsing habits or store a code that can be translated into a set of browsing habits or preferences using information stored elsewhere.
Cookies placed by advertising networks to collect browsing habits in order to target relevant advertising to the user.
Cookies placed by advertising networks in conjunction with a service implemented by the website to increase functionality, such as commenting on a blog, adding a site to the user’s social network, providing maps or counters of visitors to a site.
7 PCS Plus Website
8 Google Analytics
The PCS Plus website use Google Analytics, a web analytics service provided by Google, Inc. Google Analytics sets a cookie in order to evaluate your use of our sites and compile reports for us on activity on the PCS Plus website.
Google stores the information collected by the cookie on servers in the United States. Google may also transfer this information to third parties where required to do so by law, or where such third parties process the information on Google's behalf. Google will not associate your IP address with any other data held by Google. By using the PCS Plus website, you consent to the processing of data about you by Google in the manner and for the purposes set out above.
If you want to reject or delete these cookies please see http://www.google.com/intl/en/privacypolicy.html.
9 Cookies set by Third Party sites
We sometimes embed third-party content, such as partner quote forms or YouTube player. As a result, when you visit a page with content embedded from, for example, YouTube, you may be presented with cookies from these websites. PCS Plus does not control the dissemination of these cookies. You should check the relevant third-party website for more information about these.
10 Social Sharing
We would like to draw your attention to the fact that PCS Plus website now carries embedded ‘share’ buttons to enable users of the site to easily share articles with their friends through Google plus, Facebook and Twitter. These sites may set a cookie when you are also logged into their service. PCS Plus does not control the dissemination of these cookies and you should check the relevant third-party website for more information about these.