Last Updated: 10th May 2018
In this policy statement, “we”, “us” and “our” refers to Interests Media Ltd, trading as interests.me.
What are Cookies?
Cookies are small text (or data) files (pieces of information) that a site or its service provider transfers to your device’s hard drive through your web browser (if you allow). Cookies enable the site’s or service provider’s systems to recognise your browser and capture and remember certain information. For instance they might record the way you move around a website so that, when you revisit that website, it can present tailored options based on the information stored about your last visit.
Cookies are widely used by online service providers in order to make their websites or services work, or work more efficiently, and to analyse traffic and provide reporting information. They can also be used for advertising and marketing purposes.
Cookies are used by nearly all websites and do not harm your system.
For All Website Visitors:
- Strictly necessary temporary (or session) cookie: We use a session cookie named PHPSESSID which is set by our server infrastructure to allow our website to function. The cookie will automatically expire once you have been inactive on our website for 20 minutes, or immediately if you close your browser window.
- Persistent tracking cookie for performance and analytics: We use a cookie from Google Analytics (a third party service provider) to assist us in better understanding our site visitors. The Google Analytics cookie enables us to monitor and improve the performance of our website. For example, it allows us to count visits, identify traffic sources and see which parts of the site are most popular. We have enabled de-personalisation options in our Google Analytics account which means we do not see personally identifying information. Google Analytics is not permitted to use the information collected on our behalf except to help us conduct and improve our business;
- Persistent tracking cookies for affiliate marketing: Very occasionally, links given on our website may generate an affiliate commission for us if you click and subsequently buy from a third party. This happens only very occasionally and there is always a specific alert to this in the accompanying text.
For Tool Users (see Definitions):
- Persistent cookies for user experience: Also known as local storage devices, persistent cookies are stored as a file on your computer and remain there when you close your web browser. The cookie can be read by the website that created it when you visit that website again. We use:
- our own log-in cookie to give personal account holders a better user experience, allowing interests.me to remember them and make their login experience faster and easier for their next visit;
- our own location cookie which saves information about your location (your country, and the co-ordinates of your IP address) in order to recommend which local community you or your organisation should join based on your location;
- a cookie from Reamaze, a plug-in to our service which is only activated for logged-in users. Reamaze helps you to access a database of support questions and to contact us directly in real-time when you are using the service. It improves your experience by enabling you to contact us directly, and the cookie it uses (under the interests.reamaze.com domain) enables Reamaze to keep track of you as a single user when you move between different pages of our application. It also passes your email address to our support team when you contact us through our own tool.
For Community Email Subscribers and Organisational Email Subscribers (see Definitions):
- Persistent tracking cookies to track open rates of email newsletters: If you receive email newsletters from the interests.me service, either sent by us or by users of our Services, these emails will contain single pixel gifs, also known as web beacons, to track whether you are opening specific emails, and report this information back to our users. These tiny files contain unique identifiers which allow us and our users to recognise when subscribers have opened an email. In this case, the cookie contains an encrypted credential containing the user ID and the email ID (as assigned by our system), so that we can assign the email open action to the correct email/user combination. It does not record your IP address, so there is no further personal data collected except the action of opening an email. We use this data to create reports for our users on how many people are opening their email newsletters.
Managing Your Cookies and Tracking Technologies
If you want to check or change what types of cookies you accept, this can usually be altered within your browser settings. You can block cookies at any time by activating the setting on your browser that allows you to refuse the setting of all or some cookies. However, if you use your browser settings to block all cookies (including essential cookies) you may not be able to access all or parts of our site. Visit your browser’s help menu for more information about managing cookies.
If you are unhappy with the Tracking Technologies deployed in the email newsletters sent using our service, it is usually possible to block them by changing your settings in your email service provider, in order to turn off automatic image loading in all your emails. The tracking pixels are actually small images, and by disallowing them from opening, you can block the automatic tracking. Alternatively you may unsubscribe from those emails. This does not stop you from using our website(s), with or without cookies enabled.