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Cookie Policy

When do we use cookies and how do we get your consent?

What are cookies?

A 'cookie' is a text file containing small amounts of information which a server downloads to your personal computer (PC) or mobile when you visit a website. The server then sends a cookie back to the originating website each time you subsequently visit it, or if you visit another website which recognises that cookie.

There are different types of cookies which are used to do different things, such as letting you navigate between different pages on a website efficiently, remembering preferences you have given a website, and improving your overall experience. Others are used to provide you with advertising which is more tailored to your interests, or to measure the number of site visits and the most popular pages users visit.

Some cookies are allocated to your PC only for the duration of your visit to a website, and these are called session based cookies. These automatically expire when you close down your browser. Another type of cookie known as a 'persistent'. These cookies would remain on your PC for a period of time.

What are the new rules?

Website operators already have to give users information about the cookies they use and why they use them. Now they also have to have your consent to use them. In order to comply with these new rules, we have developed a system of classifying the different types of cookies which we use on voiceservices.bt.com, or which may be dropped by third parties through our websites. This system of classification is based on the purpose the cookies are used for, and also determines the way we will ask for your consent to use them. The classification explains more about which cookies we use, why we use them, and the functionality you will lose if you decide you don’t want to have them on your PC. We have also designed a series of icons which represent the different categories of cookies, and these icons link through to a more detailed description of those cookies and their purpose. The icons are shown on a ‘sliding scale’ which you can use to adjust your choices about the types of cookies which you agree to have on your PC at any time as the tool bar which displays these icons is always visible on the footer on all the pages you view on voiceservices.bt.com.

Cookies

When clicking the 'login' button you are also agreeing to the use of certain types of cookies. None of the information stored in these cookies is used for advertising on other websites. The cookie types are:

Functional - Remembers choices you make to improve your experience.
Performance - Collects anonymous information on the pages you visit.
Strictly necessary - Enables services you have asked for

How we ask for your consent?

When you visit voiceservices.bt.com for the first time after we introduced these icons we will show you a notice which tells you that we use cookies, why we use them, and how you can change which cookies you chose to accept. If you enter voiceservices.bt.com having seen this notice without making any changes to the existing cookie settings we have provided we will take this as your agreement to those settings as we have told you about them and we assume you are happy with them. If you change the settings, you are giving your consent to use those which you have not disabled.

However, one of the categories of cookies which we have identified is those which are 'strictly necessary' to enable us to provide you with any service which you have requested from us to be delivered online. We do not need to ask for your consent to use these, as we would not be able to provide the service you had asked for without them.

A further category of cookies which we have identified we have called 'Performance cookies' and we use these only to improve our site or measure response rates. All information collected by these cookies is anonymous and does not in any way impact on your privacy. We need to use them to maintain our site’s effectiveness and ease of use, so we have not provided an opportunity for these to be disabled, and by using our site and online services you are agreeing that we can place these types of cookies on your PC.

Using the cookie settings page

You can access the cookie settings page wherever the 'cookie preferences' tool bar appears. To make your choices, just select the option which represents a type of cookie based on its function. You'll see a detailed description of the type of cookie represented, why we want to use them, and what would happen if you don’t chose to accept them. 

Browser Settings

In addition to using the icons, cookies can also be removed from your PC using browser settings but there will still be some deterioration in the service you receive (for example, you may receive many pop up boxes containing the same advertisements or you may not be able to access a page you earlier personalised). Your browser lets you choose whether to accept, not to accept or to be warned before accepting cookies. These settings can be found in the advanced preferences.

Further information

The categorisation and icons are also used in a 'cookie code' developed by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) for use by website operators to comply with the new rules. More information can be found at allaboutcookies.org.