Site documentation

Website privacy and cookies policy

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, www1.essex.ac.uk, www2.essex.ac.uk, courses.essex.ac.uk, blogs.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 10 March 2015.

Why you see this statement

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, 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.

Data collection

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:

What data is collected

  • 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 Analyticsto provide web traffic reporting for the University.

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

In addition to data collected automatically by the webservers, some ofour pages request additional information; for instance, the prospectusrequest form asks for contact and other details, and the MyEssex portalsallow you to record a range of preferences so that you can customise whatyou see. Where this happens you will find further specific information aboutthe data gathered and its use.

All personal data is collected and stored in compliance with the DataProtection 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 aspecific site, and can be used to enhance that site's functionality and yourinteraction 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 webbrowser preferences, choosing to allow them, block them, only allow themfrom selected sites or only allow certain types of cookies. Restrictingcookies for a site may interfere with some of the functionality of thatsite, though.

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

For more information about cookies please seewww.allaboutcookies.org.

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Google AdWords remarketing

 

We use the Google AdWords remarketing service to advertise on third partywebsites (including Google) to previous visitors to our site. This could meanthat we advertise to you if you haven't completed a task on our site. For example,looking at course details but not making an application. The advert could be in the form of anadvertisement on your Google search results page, or a site in the Google DisplayNetwork. Third-party vendors, including Google, use cookies to serve ads basedon your past visits to our website. Any data collected will be used in accordancewith our own privacy policy and Google's privacy policy.

You can set preferences for how Google advertises to you using the Google Ad Preferencespage. If you want, you can opt out of interest-based advertising entirely using your cookie settings or a browser plugin.

 

Google Analytics

 

We use a third-party product, 'Google Analytics', to help us understandhow our site is used. For this to work, cookies are used and informationabout your use of our site, including your IP address, may be transmittedto, and stored by, Google. This information is subject toGoogle's Privacy Policy.As with other cookies, you can control the use of cookies on your computerby adjusting your web browser preferences. Google also provide a browserplug-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-learningtools, such as Moodle, Perception and OCS gather user data specific to theirintended purpose. Data gathered by these applications includes useridentifiers, tracking information, user contributions (eg on discussionforums, submitted essay content and assessment answers).

 

What we do with the data

 

Data relating to webserver requests are used for completion of thecurrent activity (eg a request to view a web page), and are subsequentlystored in log files, which are later processed to provide statisticalinformation about usage, load on servers, traffic patterns, troubleshooting,incident investigation, etc. These data are also recorded by GoogleAnalytics which is used by the University to report on web traffic on itssites. Analysis of web usage may be used for: systems and performancemonitoring; research; marketing (eg analysis of demographic information anduser behaviour). Information gathered by specialist applications such ase-learning tools and portals will be used to support the function andmanagement of those applications. Information gathered will not be used tocontact users, except where consent has been explicitly given or wheresecurity incidents are under investigation.

 

Do we share the data?

 

Personal data will not be passed on to third parties and will remainconfidential, unless explicitly stated (eg if a web form is gathering datato 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 withthe Data Protection Act 1998.

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