What is a ‘cookie’?

Cookies are small text files on your device (e.g. computer, phone).  They are made by your web-browser when you visit a website.  Every time you go back to that website, your browser will send the cookie file back to the website’s server.  Cookies are useful because they allow a website to recognise a user’s device. Cookies are used to enable us to improve services for you through, for example:

  • remembering if you are logged in so you can move around the website without having to log in again on each page (for example if you are in checkout)
  • measuring how many people are using each page of the website and for how long so that we can try to improve the quality of our website
  • enabling you to view content shared on other sites e.g. YouTube or Twitter

However, if you wish to restrict or block the cookies which are set by our website, or indeed any other website, you can do this through your browser settings. The Help function within your browser should tell you how.

Alternatively, you may wish to visit www.aboutcookies.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 may impact on the functionality of the website.

Our website also carries embedded ‘share’ buttons to enable users of the site to easily share articles with their friends through a number of popular social networks, for example, Facebook, Twitter or Google+. These sites may set a cookie when you are also logged in to their service. We not control the dissemination of these cookies and you should check the relevant third party website for more information about these.

The QNI has performed a ‘cookie audit’ to check which cookies are operating on our website (May 2012). Our site uses the minimum cookies required for it to operate as intended and we believe that this is acceptable in the context of the EU e-Privacy Directive introduced on 26 May 2012.

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