When we provide web services, we want to make them easy, useful and reliable. This sometimes involves placing small amounts of information on your device, for example, computer or mobile phone. These include small files known as cookies. They cannot be used to identify you personally.

These pieces of information are used to improve services for you through, for example, enabling a service to recognise your device so you don't have to give the same information several times during one task; recognising that you may already have given a username and password so you don't need to do it for every web page requested; measuring how many people are using services, so they can be made easier to use and there's enough capacity to ensure they are fast.

Information collected is not shared with other organisations.

Cookies used on our website

First-party cookies

These cookies are used to remember selections or preferences that you've already made when using our website.


Purpose: Used to maintain an anonymous user session by the server.

Expires: At the end of a session (when you close your browser).


Purpose: Used to indicate whether or not the visitors browser has JavaScript.

Expires: At the end of a session (when you close your browser).


Purpose: Indicates that user has agreed to accept cookies.

Expires: Three months


Purpose: Used by internal web editors to sign in to our editing system


Purpose: Identifies individual clients behind a shared IP address in order to apply security settings on a per-client basis.

Expires: At the end of a session


Purpose: Used to handle the consistent navigation of tabbed pages and forms across a range of different browsers.  It is set when you use pages where information appears in tabbed format.

Expires: One year.

Google Analytics

UKCEH uses the Google Analytics service. Google Analytics sets cookies to help us accurately estimate the number of visitors to the website and volumes of usage. This allows us to ensure that the service is available when you want it and fast.


Purpose: Used to distinguish between users and sessions.

Expires: Two years


Purpose: Used to determine new sessions and visits.

Expires: Thirty minutes


Purpose: Used in combination with the __utmb to identify new sessions / visits for returning visitors.

Expires: At the end of a session (when you close your browser).


Purpose: Used to throttle the request rate for the service - limiting the collection of data on high traffic sites.

Expires: Ten minutes


Purpose: Used to identify the source of traffic to the site - so Google Analytics can tell site owners where visitors came from when arriving on the site.

Expires: Six months


Purpose: Automatically differentiates between multiple links to the same URL on a single page.

Expires: At the end of a session


Purpose: Used to throttle request rate.

Expires: One minute.

For further details on the cookies set by Google Analytics, please refer to their information.

Third party services

The UKCEH website includes embedded 'share' buttons to enable users of the site to easily share articles with their friends and colleagues through a number of popular social networks, for example, Facebook or Twitter. These sites may set a cookie if you click through. UKCEH does not control the dissemination of these cookies and you should check the relevant third party website for more information about these.

When you sign up to the UKCEH newsletter, your information is hosted by our email supplier Mailchimp. It is not shared with any other party. Data are used for the purpose of sending emails and assessing activity on the emails we send. Data you provide us may be used for statistical reporting with the aim of continually improving our service to you.

Further information

Your web browser has settings which allow you to manage these small files yourself by removing or blocking cookies. Learn more about them through advice on the AboutCookies website.