- What are cookies and why do we use them?
There are many benefits to this. It means that every time you visit we can log you in automatically, and remember your preferences. Plus, we can keep you logged in as you move around the site and give you a personal experience.
Cookies are often misunderstood. So, it’s worth pointing out that they’re not computer programs, and they can’t be used to spread viruses. We hope that the information here helps you understand more about them (as well as dispelling some myths!).
- What are the different types of cookies?
These are only stored on your device (which may mean a desktop computer, laptop, tablet or mobile phone) during a single visit to the site (called a ‘browser session’). They don’t do anything unless you’re actively browsing, and they’re deleted as soon as you close your browser. Their most important benefit is that they let you move from page to page without having to repeatedly log into the site.
These remain on your device until they’re set to expire or you choose to delete them from your browser cache. They’re activated each time you visit the website that created them. They let us remember you when you return, help analyze your behavior while you’re on the site, and let us identify any problems.
Ancestry uses third party cookies placed on our site by other companies for both advertising services and on-site functionality. These suppliers include Doubleclick for Publishers, Adobe Target, TruEffect, Tealium and other partners.
Sharing with other social networks
If you use buttons to share online content with your friends via social networks like Twitter and Facebook, these companies may set a cookie on your computer. Find out more about these here:
You can find out more about cookies and get advice on discovering what cookies have been set and how you can manage and delete them at http://www.allaboutcookies.org.
- What cookies does Ancestry use?
Site functionality: These cookies do things like ensure that your password works and you stay logged in when you move between pages on the site and help the site to remember details like what’s in your shopping basket or how far you are through an order. They also keep you secure while you’re logged in and help to ensure the site looks consistent during your visit.
Site performance: These cookies collect information about how you use our site, such as which pages you visit and if you experience any errors. They don’t collect anything that could identify you and we only use them to improve how our site works, understand what interests our users, and measure how effective our content is. Our performance cookies include:
- Web analytics to provide information on how our site is used
- Error management to help us improve the site by measuring any errors that occur
- Site preferences to remember details such as how you’ve set up your home page, or the home person in your family tree
Targeting: ‘Targeting’ cookies (or advertising cookies) collect information about browsing habits. We use them to make sure our advertising and suggestions are relevant to you and your interests (you’ll also hear this referred to as online behavioral advertising). We work with third parties who do this for us and we sometimes also place ads around our sites. You can opt out of some targeting cookies – see “How can I opt out of interest-based advertising?” below for more information.
We also use tracking pixels (a.k.a. Web Beacons, action tags, or clear gifs), that help us better manage content on our site by informing us what content is effective. Pixels are tiny graphics with a unique identifier, similar in function to cookies, and are used to track the online movements of website users in combination with other information we know about our users. In contrast to cookies, which are stored on a user’s computer hard drive, pixels are embedded invisibly on site pages and are about the size of the period at the end of this sentence. We also use pixels in our HTML-based emails to let us know which emails have been opened by recipients. This allows us to gauge the effectiveness of certain communications and the effectiveness of our marketing campaigns.
- Do I have to accept Cookies?
We suggest you accept all cookies from our site, to get all the benefits we’ve outlined above. However, it is possible to manage and block cookies using your web browser. Unless you’ve adjusted your browser settings, our system will issue cookies as soon as you visit our site. Remember, if you change your browser settings to block all cookies (including essential ones) you may not be able to access some or all parts of our site.
You can also set your browser to alert you every time a site sets a cookie. Each browser works differently, but here are instructions on how to manage your cookies, using all the browsers we support:
Click on the 'Tools' icon then select 'Internet Options'. Choose the 'Privacy' tab and Click on ‘Advanced’ for more detailed privacy settings.
Choose 'Preferences' from the Safari menu then select 'Privacy'. You’ll see your Cookie settings and can choose your settings.
Click on 'Menu', 'Options', 'Privacy' and then select ‘Firefox will:’ to use custom settings for history. You can then choose your settings.
Click on the ’Menu’ then select Settings. At the bottom of the page, select “Show advanced settings.” In the 'Privacy' section, click the “Content settings” button. In the “Cookies” section, choose your preferred setting.
How do I know which internet browser I have?
If you use a PC you can find out which internet browser you use by clicking 'Help' at the top of your browser window and selecting 'About'.
If you use an Apple computer click on the Apple menu when the browser is open and select 'About'.
Ancestry strives to show you relevant advertisements
Any of these “interest-based” ads placed on Ancestry’s behalf will contain information on or near them that informs you about the third party delivering you the ads and how to opt out of receiving such ads in the future. If you do not see any information about how to opt out of receiving interest-based ads, you are likely receiving a generic ad that was not specifically targeted towards you.
More information about interest-based advertising
If you are concerned about interest-based or targeted ads you are receiving on our websites or other websites, you may want to visit http://www.networkadvertising.org/understanding-digital-advertising or http://www.aboutads.info/consumers/ for additional information.
- How can I opt out of interest-based advertising?
Opting out of Ancestry interest-based advertising
Any targeted ads placed on Ancestry’s behalf will contain information on or near them that informs you about the third party delivering you the ads and how to opt out of receiving similar ads from that party in the future. If you do not see any information about how to opt out of receiving these ads, you are likely receiving a generic ad that was not specifically targeted towards you.
To opt out of receiving:
- Targeted ads based on the information that we have collected about you, please click here.
- Targeted ads based on information collected by third party partners, please click here and here.
- (For Facebook users) Facebook ads personalized based on the websites you visit, and your activity with Ancestry, please click here.
Please note that these links do not opt you out of being served advertising entirely. You will continue to receive generic ads that may not be as relevant to you.
Please note: if you delete, block or otherwise restrict cookies, or if you use a different computer or Internet browser, you may need to renew your opt-out choice.