Cookies are small text files that 'remember' bits of information from your visit to a website. They make the interaction between you and the website faster and easier. Without cookies the website thinks you are a new visitor every time you move to a new page.
We also use them to collect anonymous statistics about how people use the site, and to help us make it as easy for you to use as we can.
A cookie is stored on your computer or mobile device by a website's server. Only that server can retrieve or read the contents of that cookie. Each cookie is unique to your web browser. So if we put a cookie on your computer, it can't be read by any other website.
There are two types of cookie:
Session cookies automatically delete when you close your browser or after a few minutes if you have left the site open without using it. They mean you don't have to keep re-submitting information as you move through the site or carry out transactions.
Persistent cookies remember information from previous visits and are kept when the web browser is closed. They may be used for remembering any setting you have changed or analysing website traffic.
You can set your computer to accept all cookies, to notify you when a cookie is issued, or not to receive cookies at any time. You can also see what cookies have been set and how to manage and delete them. The way in which you do this depends upon the web browser which you use. Go to www.aboutcookies.org or www.allaboutcookies.org to find out more.
For information on how to do this on the browser of your mobile phone you will need to refer to your handset manual.