Whenever you use our online services, including our applications, cookies, and other tracking technologies, these can be used in various ways, like making the FindMyCollegewebsite work, to analyze traffic, or for advertisement purposes. These technologies are either used by us directly or by our business partners, including third-party service providers and advertisers we work with. If you want to learn more about what a cookie is, how they re used and what your choices are, you can read more here.
What a cookie?
An HTTP cookie (also called web cookie, Internet cookie, browser cookie, or simply cookie) is a small piece of data sent from the FindMyCollegewebsite and stored on the user’s computer by the users web browser while the user is browsing. FindMyCollege’s own cookies are therefore “first-party cookies.” In case we allow others to service cookies through the FindMyCollegewebsites and apps, these cookies are so-called “third-party cookies.”
A session cookie, also known as an in-memory cookie, transient cookie or non-persistent cookie, exists only in temporary memory while the user navigates the website. Web browsers normally delete session cookies when the user closes the browser. Unlike other cookies, session cookies do not have an expiration date assigned to them, which is how the browser knows to treat them as session cookies.
Instead of expiring when the web browser is closed as session cookies do, a persistent cookie expires at a specific date or after a specific length of time. This means that, for the cookie’s entire lifespan (which can be as long or as short as its creators want), its information will be transmitted to the server every time the user visits the website that it belongs to, or every time the user views a resource belonging to that website from another website (such as an advertisement). We strive to serve cookies or allow the serving of cookies with a maximum lifespan of 5 years.
Normally, a cookie’s domain attribute will match the domain that is shown in the web browser’s address bar. This is called a first-party cookie. A third-party cookie, however, belongs to a domain different from the one shown in the address bar. This sort of cookie typically appears when web pages feature content from external websites, such as banner advertisements. This opens up the potential for tracking the user’s browsing history and is often used by advertisers in an effort to serve relevant advertisements to each user.
In addition, other tracking technologies are used which are similar to cookies. These can include web beacons (also known as pixel tags, web bugs, or gifs), tracking URLs, or software development kits (SDKs). A web beacon is a tiny graphic image of just one pixel that can be delivered to your computer as part of a web page request in an app, in an advertisement, or in an HTML email message. Pixels can be used to retrieve info from your device, like your device type or operating system, IP address, and time of visit. They’re also used to serve and read cookies in your browser. Tracking URLs are used to understand from what referring website the FindMyCollege websites or apps are used. SDKs are small pieces of code included in apps that function like cookies and web beacons.
How are cookies used?
Cookies are used for different purposes. They allow you to be recognized as the same user across the different pages of a website, between websites, or when you use an app. The types of info that we collect through cookies include IP address; device ID; viewed pages; browser type; browsing info; operating system; internet service provider; timestamp; whether you have responded to an advertisement; the referring URL; and features used or activities engaged in within the website/apps.
Technical Cookies: We try to give our visitors an advanced, user-friendly website and apps that adapt automatically to their needs and wishes. To achieve this we use technical cookies to show you our website, to make it function correctly, to create your user account, to sign you in, and to manage your requests. These technical cookies are absolutely necessary for our website to function properly.
Analytics Cookies: We use these cookies to gain insight into how our visitors use FindMyCollege This means we can find out what works and what doesn’t, optimize and improve our websites or apps, understand the effectiveness of advertisements and communications, and ensure we continue to be interesting and relevant. The data we gather can include which web pages you’ve viewed, which referring/exit pages you’ve entered and left from, which platform type you’ve used, which emails you’ve opened and acted upon, and date and time stamp info.
It also means we can use details about how you interacted with the site, like the number of clicks you make on a given page, your mouse movements and scrolling activity, the search words you use, and the text you enter into various fields. We use analytics cookies as part of our online advertising campaigns to learn how users interact with our website or apps after they’ve been shown an online advertisement. This may include advertisements on third-party websites. Analytics cookies may also be used to enable our business partners to learn if their customers use accommodation offers integrated into their websites.
Commercial Cookies: We use third-party cookies as well as our own to display personalized advertisements on our websites and on other websites. This is called “retargeting”, and it’s based on browsing activities like the university/program you’ve been searching for, and the prices you’ve been shown.