A) What are cookies?
Cookies are small text files that visited sites send to the user's browsing device (usually a browser). They are saved in the corresponding folder in the browser while the user is visiting a website, to then be retransmitted to the same sites when the user visits again. They are used to improve browsing, save preferences already entered by the user (user name, password and the like), track the user's tastes and preferences, which allows for the presence or absence of targeted marketing initiatives or the provision of services connected to the data controller's activity, such as newsletters, service notifications on the site, etc. If limitations were to be placed on their usage, this would affect the usability of site content during browsing. However, the user can always block or remove said cookies from their browser's cache, but such actions could lead to partial enjoyment of the services offered by the web application.
B) Types of cookies
Session cookies are temporary files that only exist for the duration of the user's browsing session. When the browser is closed the session cookies expire. These are generally used to identify users when they access a site, to remember user preferences when moving between pages on the site and to offer users specific information that has been collected previously. The most common example of this function is the "virtual cart" on an e-commerce site. When a page of a catalogue is visited and certain items are selected, session cookies remember the selected items so that they stay selected in the virtual shopping cart when the user is ready to check out. Without session cookies, if the user were to click on checkout, the new page could not recognise past actions on the previous pages and the cart would remain empty. Persistent cookies are files that remain active even after the browser has been closed and help websites to remember user data and settings for subsequent visits. This allows for quicker and more convenient access in terms of time as it is not necessary to provide login data again. In addition to authentication, other website functions are also made possible, which include: language selection, theme selection, menu preferences, bookmarks and favourites and much more. During a visit the user selects his/her preferences and these will be remembered via the use of persistent cookies during the next visit.
C) Third party cookies
|is a service offered by Google Inc. that generates detailed statistics about website traffic and the sources of the traffic. It is the most utilised statistical service. Google Analytics can monitor visitors coming from all external links to the site including search engines and social networks, direct visits and reference sites. It also visualises advertising, pay-per-click, e-mail marketing and other links within PDF documents.|
|AdSense is a programme run by Google Inc. that allows advertisers from the Google network to publish advertisements on their own website and earn money based on the number of views of the advertisement and the number of clicks.|
|AddThis.com is a useful service for sharing articles and text that is present on a website across the various social platforms on the web. It means that the life of everyone browsing a site can be made easier and that they can normally use the most famous social networking sites. AddThis.com provides a series of buttons that can be placed on a web page and aids distribution and subscription to web content on "social" websites, such as Facebook, Twitter, etc... The service provides two types of button. One for subscribing to RSS feeds and a second for inserting web page content in the various services of social bookmarking.|
|Pingdom is a service that allows website to be monitored and detects when the website is down.|
|Awin is an affiliate marketing service. We use their cookies to let the affiliates know if your session comes from their webiste, and if that session ended with a transaction of a product, giving also details on that purchased product.|
|Rakuten is an affiliate marketing service. We use their cookies to let the affiliates know if your session comes from their webiste, and if that session ended with a transaction of a product, giving also details on that purchased product.|
D) Cookie privacy and security
Cookies are not viruses, they are only texts files, which are not read by the browser nor executed in memory. Consequently, they cannot duplicate or spread to other network to be replicated again. They are not included within the standard definition of a virus due to the fact that they cannot carry out these actions. However, cookies can be used for malicious purposes. Since they are used to store information about preferences, the history of the user's actions and specific navigation between sites, cookies can be used as a form of spyware. Many anti-spyware products are well aware of this problem and routinely highlight cookies as possible threats.
E) Cookies on masons.it
The responsible and ethical policy with which MASON'S treats aspects relating to privacy includes clear descriptions of how cookies are distributed on its website, which are published on a specific page. Most browsers have implemented privacy settings that provide different levels of cookie acceptance, expiry and deletion after a user has visited a certain site. In line with the standard practices of many websites, masons.it may install cookies on the user's computer. By using the site the user is accepting the use of cookie technology, but may personalise their choices via their browser settings. Cookies are transmitted on the e-commerce site masons.it (which are instrumental in managing the site for purchases, virtual cart management, payment management and user profiling), which are managed by the data controller, ibox SA, Via Cantonale - Galleria 1 - CH-6928, Manno (Switzerland). ibox SA, a Swiss company, meets Swiss regulations on privacy, providing their own privacy policies (where appropriate and requested by Swiss law), the content of which is independent.
F) Types of cookies and choice of mode of use and activation
Some cookies are essential for the correct functioning of our website. Without such cookies you could not browse within the website or use some of its functions. These types of cookies are "technical" cookies, which may be session or persistent cookies, and they allow for information provided by the user to be remembered from one page to another in the booking process. As these cookies are essential, if you were to disenable them, your enjoyment of website content could be compromised or may be impossible or extremely limited. These cookies do not collect information that allows for visitors to be identified, except where the user is registered on the website and browses after logging into the reserved area.
Profiling cookies and tracking cookies (for statistical and site optimisation purposes): we use third party profiling cookies to analyse the way in which visitors use our websites and to monitor access to them. This allows us to offer a high quality experience by personalising what we offer based on the pages the user has actually visited. For example, we may use these kind of cookies to track the pages that are most popular, to identify the most effective way of linking to the page and to establish the reasons for which some pages receive error messages. These cookies do not collect information that allows a visitor to be identified. All the data that is collected is aggregated and, therefore, is made anonymous and used to improve the functioning of our website.
G) How to disenable cookies in different browsers
By following the instructions given for the different browsers, the user can disenable, block and/or modify cookie tracking. The instructions have been given by following the versions listed to support the browser type.
Internet Explorer (version 11)
Click on "Tools" and choose "Internet Options".
Click on the "Privacy" tab and move the cursor on the option chosen in "Settings" (Internet Area), taking into consideration the fact that by going upwards all cookies will be blocked, while moving it downwards will mean that cookies from all websites will be accepted. Then confirm by clicking on OK.
Blocking cookies could prevent the correct visualisation of some web pages.
Mozilla Firefox (version 38.0.1)
Click on the "Menu" icon and select "Options".
Choose the "Privacy" tab from the menu. There will be 3 tabs:
1. "Tracking": you can choose whether to flag the field or not, depending on choice.
2. "History": from here select the "Use custom settings" in the "History Settings" field and flag your choice or remove the mark from "Accept cookies from websites".
3. "Location Bar": remove the flags if you do not want suggestions
Google Chrome (version 43.0.2357.81m)
Click on the "Menu" icon and select "Settings".
At the bottom of the page, scrolling downwards, click on "Show advanced settings".
Select "Content settings" in the "Privacy" section and flag "Block sites from setting any data" or select the desired option. Click "Done" to confirm.