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Privacy and cookies

The School of Political and Social Science (SPS) is committed to protecting your privacy and keeping you informed of how your information is used. This page details how and where our activities differ from the University Privacy Policy and how you can contact us in this regard.

Use of cookies by the School of Social and Political Science

A cookie is a text file written by your web browser to your computer's hard disk or SSD. They are used by websites for purposes such as authentication, content personalisation, usage tracking and advertising.

The SPS website makes limited use of cookies. These are detailed below.

Necessary cookies

Some cookies we place on your browser ensure that the School website delivers you information and services securely and optimally. You must accept these cookies to be able to make use of some of our online systems and functionality.

Cookie Cookie name(s) Data stored When does it expire? Description
EASE login cosign-eucsCosign-www.sps.ed.ac.uk A unique identifier that represents the browser and/or user account. Deleted when you sign out of EASE or close the browser. Only affects staff, students and other designated users. This session cookie is set when you log in to one of our EASE-protected websites (e.g. staff and student intranets). Removed when you close the browser. Visit the EASE site for more information about EASE and how EASE uses cookies.
Squiz Matrix session SQ_SYSTEM_SESSION A unique identifier that represents the browser When you close the browser

This cookie stores what’s called a ‘session ID’ that enables the content management system (CMS) to store data about your current session. If you’re not logged into the CMS, it stores nothing (except the fact you are not logged in).

For colleagues, students and other designated users who are logged into the site via the CMS (e.g. in order to edit a page), the cookie tells the CMS where to find the session file which stores your user ID, and allows you to remain logged in during the current browser session.

Performance cookies

These cookies collect anonymous information on the pages visited to help improve our performance in provision of information and services.

Cookie Cookie name(s) Data stored When does it expire? Description
Google Analytics __utma, __utmb, __utmc, __utmv, __utmz et al Our use of Google Analytics is as described in the third party cookies section of the University Privacy Policy.
Google Maps SID, SAPISID, APISID, SSID, HSID, NID, PREF Our use of Google Maps is as described in the third party cookies section of the University Privacy Policy.

Notes relating to Google Analytics

  • From 25 May 2018 we anonymise IP addresses so that they are not stored as part of GA data.
  • We do not implement the User-ID feature.

Functionality cookies

These are cookies that are not essential, but enhance your use of our website. They remember choices you make to enhance your experience of our site.

Cookie Cookie name(s) Data stored When does it expire? Description
Squiz Matrix session cookies lastSelectedLinkId and lastSelectedAssetId Unique IDs identifying assets within the CMS When you close the browser. Only affects staff, students and other designated users who are logged into the site via the content management system (CMS).

YouTube cookies

Cookie Cookie name(s) Data stored When does it expire? Description
YouTube embedded video cookies SID, LOGIN_INFO, use_hotbox, PREF, SSID, HSID, watched_video_id_list, __utma, __utmz, demographics, VISITOR_INFO1_LIVE Various unique identifiers, as well as login information that may relate to a Google account. Most of the cookies expire 10 years after your last visit to a page containing a Youtube video, although some expire sooner. Google set a number of cookies on any page that includes a Youtube video. While we have no control over the cookies set by Google, they appear to include a mixture of pieces of information to measure the number and behaviour of Youtube users, including information that links your visits to our website with your Google account if you are signed in to one. Information about your use of our website, including your IP address, may be transmitted to Google and stored on servers in the United States.This cookie does not identify you personally unless you are logged into Google, in which case it is linked to your Google account.

Third party cookies

Some University pages use third party services or software, such as maps, online videos or social networking features. Many of these services may set cookies in your browser in accordance with their own privacy policies, although many can be blocked by you without impact on your experience. The University of Edinburgh has no control over these cookies.

The School makes minimal use of such cookies, limited generally to video and map embeds, as well as Google Analytics. For specifics relating to those cookies, please see the University's third party cookies listing.

Disabling cookies and opting out

You can disable cookies so that your browser does not write them to your computer or other device.

This page describes how to disable cookies on multiple browsers and platforms.

The Google Analytics opt-out add-on allows you to block Google Analytics in popular desktop browsers.


If you have any queries about cookies or privacy on the SPS website, please email SPS Support.

This page was last updated on 15 Jun 2018 11:44am.

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