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 [Important data protection stuff]

Upcoming open days

Undergraduate Postgraduate
Colchester Campus
Saturday 25 October 2014 (booking now)
Southend Campus
None upcoming
Colchester Campus
Wednesday 5 November 2014 (booking now)

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No open days are available for booking yet. You will be able to book your desired open day online three months before the date.


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Colchester Campus
Southend Campus

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Website privacy and cookies policy

What is this statement and what does it cover?

This statement explains what information we gather when you visit our website and informs you how this information is used and protected. The University hosts a number of websites on various webservers: this policy covers websites hosted at www.essex.ac.uk, www2.essex.ac.uk, courses.essex.ac.uk, blogs.essex.ac.uk, forums.essex.ac.uk moodle.essex.ac.uk, libwww.essex.ac.uk, and perception.essex.ac.uk; other University of Essex webservers have their own privacy policies. Our web pages link to external websites: the University has no responsibility for privacy or other legal issues relating to these external sites.

This privacy policy, and the ways in which personal data may be gathered and processed via this website, are subject to review and development and any such changes will only be notified by this page.

This policy was last reviewed on 08 May 2013.

What data is collected?

It is standard practice for webservers to collect data automatically about all requests for files (web pages, images, etc). Data gathered by University of Essex webservers include:

  • your IP address
  • details about your web browser
  • details about the files requested
  • date and time of requests
  • for each file requested, the referring page, if any, from which you may have followed a hyperlink
  • search terms and search results
  • the domain from which your request originated
  • your username, if you have authenticated with the webserver

This information is also gathered by Google Analytics to provide web traffic reporting for the University.

If you visit our pages via a proxy server, some of the logged data will be obscured; for instance, the IP address collected will be that of the proxy server rather than that of your computer.

In addition to data collected automatically by the webservers, some of our pages request additional information; for instance, the prospectus request form asks for contact and other details, and the myEssex portals allow you to record a range of preferences so that you can customise what you see. Where this happens you will find further specific information about the data gathered and its use.

All personal data is collected and stored in compliance with the Data Protection Act 1998.

Under the Data Protection Act 1998, any individuals about whom the University may be holding personal data have the right to access the data that is being held about them. Full details about how this works, and how to request such information are available on the Records Management web pages under How to access your personal data.

What about cookies?

Cookies are small text files stored on your computer. They relate to a specific site, and can be used to enhance that site's functionality and your interaction with it; they may also be used for usage tracking, research, targeting, etc.

You can control the use of cookies on your computer by adjusting your web browser preferences, choosing to allow them, block them, only allow them from selected sites or only allow certain types of cookies. Restricting cookies for a site may interfere with some of the functionality of that site, though.

Details of the cookies we use are available elsewhere: Cookies on the University website.

For more information about cookies please see www.allaboutcookies.org.

Google Analytics

We use a third-party product, 'Google Analytics', to help us understand how our site is used. For this to work, cookies are used and information about your use of our site, including your IP address, may be transmitted to, and stored by, Google. This information is subject to Google's Privacy Policy. As with other cookies, you can control the use of cookies on your computer by adjusting your web browser preferences. Google also provide a browser plug-in which allows you to opt out of being tracked by Google Analytics across all websites.

Additional data for specialist applications

Specialist applications, including the myEssex portals and e-learning tools, such as Moodle, Perception and OCS gather user data specific to their intended purpose. Data gathered by these applications includes user identifiers, tracking information, user contributions (eg on discussion forums, submitted essay content and assessment answers).

What do we do with the data?

Data relating to webserver requests are used for completion of the current activity (eg a request to view a web page), and are subsequently stored in log files, which are later processed to provide statistical information about usage, load on servers, traffic patterns, troubleshooting, incident investigation, etc. These data are also recorded by Google Analytics which is used by the University to report on web traffic on its sites. Analysis of web usage may be used for: systems and performance monitoring; research; marketing (eg analysis of demographic information and user behaviour). Information gathered by specialist applications such as e-learning tools and portals will be used to support the function and management of those applications. Information gathered will not be used to contact users, except where consent has been explicitly given or where security incidents are under investigation.

Do we share the data?

Personal data will not be passed on to third parties and will remain confidential, unless explicitly stated (eg if a web form is gathering data to be passed on to an external partner). The four exceptions to this are:

  • Log files and other data may be analysed by the University's external support providers when investigating faults and other technical issues relating to webserver performance.
  • Many University of Essex web pages include tracking code which allows Google Analytics to record usage and traffic information. These data are held on Google servers, are used for reporting and analysis by the University and a limited number of external consultants; they are not shared with any other parties. They are not used to identify individuals.
  • Data entered by the user for online ordering of certain goods and services are passed to our credit card-processing partner Netbanx together with a unique transaction number when required for the purpose of processing online orders and payments. Such data is also stored by the University in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998. University web pages do not gather details of your credit or debit card.
  • Data may be passed to the police and other authorities where it is required in the investigation of illegal activities and security breaches.

Where data is passed to third parties, it is done so in compliance with the Data Protection Act 1998.

Anonymised usage data may be provided in publicly-available web statistics; any such data cannot be traced to individual users.