A cookie is a small text file that is stored on a user’s computer for record keeping purposes. Cookies can be either session cookies or persistent cookies. A session cookie expires when you close your browser and is used to make it easier for you to navigate our website. A persistent cookie remains on your hard drive for an extended period of time.
For example, when you sign in to our website, we will record your user or member ID and the name on your user or member account in the cookie file on your computer. We also may record your password in this cookie file, if you indicated that you would like your password saved for automatic sign-in. For security purposes, we will encrypt any usernames, passwords, and other user or member account-related data that we store in such cookies. In the case of sites and services that do not use a user or member ID, the cookie will contain a unique identifier. We may allow our authorized service providers to serve cookies from our website to allow them to assist us in various activities, such as doing analysis and research on the effectiveness of our site and content.
You may delete or decline cookies by changing your browser settings. (Click "Help" in the toolbar of most browsers for instructions.) If you do so, some of the features and services of our website may not function properly.
Web beacons (also known as clear gifs, pixel tags or web bugs) are tiny graphics with a unique identifier, similar in function to cookies, and are used to track the online movements of web users or to access cookies. Unlike cookies which are stored on the user’s computer hard drive, web beacons are embedded invisibly on the web pages (or in email) and are about the size of the period at the end of this sentence.
Web beacons may be used to deliver or communicate with cookies, to count users who have visited certain pages and to understand usage patterns. We also may receive an anonymous identification number if you come to our site from an online advertisement displayed on a third-party website.