Cookies

What cookies are, why we use them, how you can manage them and what we do with the information.

1 What are cookies?

Cookies are small text files downloaded by your web browser and stored on your computer, smart phone or tablet as you visit websites.

How can cookies help a website?

Cookies help a website to operate correctly and aid user experience, and they are used by most websites. They have many purposes, including:

  • allowing a website to 'remember' you and your preferences, such as the font size, during visits
  • storing information, such as the items you have put in your online shopping basket
  • enabling the collection of analytical data that website owners can use, such as how many times a web page has been viewed
  • operating 'targeted' advertising.

Different types of cookie

  • Session cookies - These are temporary cookies that are deleted from your device when a browser is closed and the session ended.
  • Persistent cookies - These are stored on your device for a defined period of time.
  • First party cookies - These are set by the website you are visiting and can only be accessed and used by that website.
  • Third party cookies - These are set through a website by a party other than the one that owns the website, usually through applications or functions created by other companies that a website may implement on its pages. The importance of third party cookies is that they can be used to track users across websites.

Learn more about cookies

2 How to disable or enable cookies

You can use your internet browser (for example, Chrome, Internet Explorer, Safari or Firefox) to manage cookies across all websites you use. This includes being able to block and delete cookies. 

The website Aboutcookies.org provides instructions on how to manage cookies:

If you are using your browser's settings to block or delete cookies, whilst you will still be able to use our site you may encounter some issues.

3 Our use of cookies

When we provide services, we want to make them easy, useful and reliable. Where services are delivered on the internet, this involves the use of cookies.

The cookies we use cannot be used to identify you personally.

Our use of cookies:

  • helps us to make sure our site operates correctly and efficiently
  • provides accessibility and functionality
  • collects usage statistics that allow us to monitor how our site is used so that we can improve it.

The table below shows cookies used across www.westsussex.gov.uk.

CookieDescriptionExpiry
NSC_xxxx (name changes but prefixed NSC)

Network load balancer cookie that ensures our servers do not become overloaded by requests by distributing workload.

1 hour
ASP.Net _SessionID

Used to identify requests linked to the same browser session.

Session (deleted when browser is closed)
complianceCookie

Used to hide the cookie banner on our site once you have seen it.

1 year
rating

Used to remember the rating you have given to a page. The name of the cookie will be 'rating' followed by a number which relates to the page you have rated.

Session
tab

Used when browsing a guide page to determine which section to show.

Session
browserupdateorg

Used to hide 'Update your browser' banner when you are using an out-of-date browser.

1 year
SurveyCookie

Used to indicate if you have participated in the pop-up survey that appears on some pages on our site.

1 day
JSESSIONID

Used so website can identify requests linked to the same browser session.

Session (deleted when browser is closed)
saplb_*

Used in the management of requests to the Netweaver application server.

Session (deleted when browser is closed)
.ASPXAUTH

Used to recognise successful login to account area (SPOCC).

Session (deleted when browser is closed)
ARRAffinity

Network load balancing cookie that ensures our servers do not become overloaded by requests by distributing workload (Windows Azure).

Session

4 Third parties

We use a variety of third party functions and applications to enrich and improve our content. While we try to limit the setting of cookies by these applications where possible, some cookies are unavoidable. Where these third party services are used on the website they may also receive the IP address of the device you are using.

West Sussex County Council does not collect personally identifiable information of visitors to our site. We will not:

  • associate any data gathered with any personally identifying information
  • link or seek to link an IP address with the identity of a computer user.

Below is an outline of third party functionality used across our websites and how to find out more information.

Google Analytics

We use Google Analytics (GA), a web analysis service from Google, to help us collect site use statistics. The following cookies related to this service may be set:

Cookie Description Expiry
_utma Used to determine unique visitors to our site and is updated with each pageview.  2 years from set/update
_utmb Used to establish and continue a user session. 30 minutes from set/update
_utmc Used in conjunction with the _utmb cookie to determine whether or not to establish a new session for the user. Session (deleted when browser is closed)
_utmz Stores the type of referral used by the visitor to reach our site, whether via a direct method, a referring link, a website search, or a campaign such as an advert or email link. 6 months from set/update
_ga Used to distinguish a user as unique. 2 years
_gat Used to throttle request rate. 10 minutes
_gid Used to distinguish users. 24 hours

Google Analytics uses first party cookies through our website to collect standard internet log information and visitor behaviour. This information is sent to Google and is used by us to evaluate how our website is being used, and review and improve our sites.

Google Analytics doesn't identify who you are, but does track your movements on our websites.

You can find out more about the cookies Google Analytics sets on its cookie usage page.

Google provide a browser-based tool that you can install and use to opt out of all GA data collection. You can install it from their Google Analytics opt-out page.

We publish summary reports of website data collected through GA on the West Sussex Data Store page.

Job search

Our job search functionality is provided by Lumesse. This sets a number of session cookies to aid the search and application process. You can find out about Lumesse's cookies on its Privacy Policy page.

You Tube

  • We embed our video content using YouTube. Information on how this website uses cookies can be found on Google's privacy pages. We have used YouTube's 'no-cookie' domain to stream videos on our site. This means that cookies will only be set by YouTube if you elect to play the video.

Citizen Space and Survey Monkey

  • We use Citizen Space (and occasionally Survey Monkey) to publish surveys. Information on their use of cookies is available on the Citizen Space and SurveyMonkey websites.

GovDelivery

  • We use GovDelivery to send out our email alerts. Its sign-up process uses a session cookie relating to the subscription concerned and also sets a tracking cookie so it can understand activity in order to improve the product. This cookie expires after a year. Information on GovDelivery's use of cookies can be found on the Legal and privacy page of its website.

Twitter and Facebook

  • A small selection of pages have Twitter or Facebook activity streams and badges embedded in them. We also use Facebook's targeted advertising service on a small number of pages. These use cookies, set by the respective service. 

Google Maps

  • Where we have embedded Google Maps in our pages, cookies may be set by Google. Information on how Google uses cookies can be found on the Google privacy pages.

Library catalogue (Arena)

  • Arena (the library catalogue) use essential cookies which enable features such as wish lists and secure areas. It also uses third party cookies to link to social media services.

Booking Bug

  • We use a service provided by Booking Bug for some of our appointment booking functionality.

Soundcloud

  • Some of our pages have audio clips embedded. These are hosted by Soundcloud, which sets a number of cookies.

Apprenticeships

  • We embed an apprenticeships search tool within our site provided by apprenticeships.org.uk. This may set a number of cookies.

Sharing buttons

  • Most of our web pages feature buttons to allow you to share the content on social media. Using these buttons will take you to the relevant social media website, which may set cookies.

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