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Cookie policy

Effective date: October 5, 2012
Last revised: 5 October 2016

We use cookies and other technologies on this website to improve its performance and enhance users’ experiences. This policy explains how we do that.

What are cookies?

Cookies are small text files placed by web servers on your computer or mobile device when you access websites. “First party” cookies are set by websites that you are visiting at the time. “Third party” cookies are set by domains other than those of the websites that you visit.

“Session” cookies remain on your computer or mobile device during your visit and expire when you close your browser. “Persistent” cookies, conversely, remain on your computer/device for a period of time specified in the cookie.

We use first party persistent cookies to set and remember your preferences for repeat visits to our site. We use third party persistent cookies from eTracker and HubSpot, Inc, to analyze how our visitors use our website and to monitor website performance.

We maintain a list of cookies that we use on this site and we update the list at least annually.

What types of cookies does GfK use?

Most cookies fall into one or more of the following categories:

  • Strictly necessary
    These types of cookies are essential to provide services specifically requested by website visitors. When accessing secure areas of websites, making purchases on e-commerce sites or submitting online forms, these types of cookies are essential. Without them, websites cannot function or deliver the requested services.
    GfK uses strictly necessary cookies on this website and we use them on other websites that we operate, such as our client portals and panel websites.
  • Performance
    These cookies collect information about how visitors use a website, such as which pages are most popular, which method of linking between pages is most effective, and if users encounter error messages from web pages. These cookies allow us to provide a high quality experience for users. The information collected by these cookies does not identify users and is aggregated. They are designed to help improve how our website works.
    We use performance cookies on this site including those from our web analytics provider, etracker and HubSpot, Inc.
  • Functionality
    These cookies remember choices that you make so as to improve your experience.
    We use functionality cookies to remember your preferences. For example, we set a permanent cookie to remember your country and language selections if you tick the “Remember” checkbox. We also provide social widgets – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other sharing tools – for users that would like to share content on our site with their friends, followers and connections. These social widgets are disabled by default, but you can enable them during your visit. If you enable the Like button, we will remember that preference on your next visit.
  • Targeting cookies
    These cookies collect information about your browsing habits in order to make advertising relevant to you and your interests. They are also used to limit the number of times you see an advertisement as well as help measure the effectiveness of advertising campaigns. They are usually placed by advertising networks or social networking firms with the website operator’s permission. Market researchers also set these cookies to measure ad exposure and deliver aggregated, statistical data to advertisers about the effectiveness of their campaigns.

GfK provides visitors convenient tools to share content on our website with their social networks, including Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. When you click on a third party social widget or button to share content, the third party will learn that you have visited our website and may subsequently use information about your visit to target advertising to you on other websites.

To protect your privacy, we have programmed the social widgets on our site so that they are disabled by default. Information about your visit to our website is not shared with social media companies unless you click on their respective widgets.

We do not display behaviorally-targeted advertising on this website; however, our Digital Market Intelligence (DMI) division works closely with advertising networks and publishers to help them measure and optimize campaigns on websites that display ads.

Can website users block cookies?

Yes, you can adjust the privacy settings in your browser to block all cookies; however, this could severely affect your browsing experience as many websites may not function properly. Your browser may allow you to delete all cookies upon closing your browser. This option, though, results in persistent cookies getting deleted that may store your preferences and personalized settings on websites that you visit regularly. It is possible to keep desired cookies, though, as your browser may allow you to specify which websites are always or never allowed to use cookies. 

Our web analytics provider, etracker as well as our marketing partner HubSpot, Inc, does not use your device’s entire Internet Protocol (IP) address for analysis and its cookies do not collect personal data. Nevertheless, if you would like your anonymous browsing to be completely excluded from collection by etracker, simply click the following link and enter the characters that appear on your screen http://www.etracker.de/privacy?et=DKbY3K.You have the ability to decline cookies from HubSpot, Inc. by visiting:http://we-online.sites.hubspot.com/opt-out
A preference cookie will then be set on your device and remain in effect provided that it is not deleted.

Besides cookies, etracker and social widgets, what other technologies does this site use?

  • Log files
    As is true of most websites, we gather certain information automatically and store it in log files. This information includes IP addresses, browser type, Internet service provider (ISP), referring/exit pages, operating system, date/time stamp and clickstream data.
    We use this information to analyze trends, to administer the site, to track users' movements around the site and to gather demographic information about our user base as a whole. We may link this automatically-collected data to personal information for legitimate purposes, such as to detect and prevent fraudulent activity.
  • Web beacons
    A web beacon (also known as a tag, clear gif or 1x1 pixel), consists of a small string of code that is embedded within a web page or email. There may or may not be a visible graphic image associated with the web beacon and often the image is designed to blend into the background of the web page or email.
    Our website analytics provider, etracker, uses web beacons throughout our site to help us understand how visitors use our site and to improve the performance of our site. A Facebook web beacon is present when visitors to our site activate the Like button.

Our marketing communications and survey invitation emails may contain web beacons to tell us whether our emails are opened and to verify any clicks through to links within the email. We may use this information to determine which of our emails are more interesting to users, to improve the quality of the emails that we send and to query users who do not open our emails whether they wish to continue receiving them. The web beacon is deleted when you delete the email.

If you would prefer not to have web beacons in the emails that you receive, you should adjust your email program to receive messages in plain text rather than HTML. It is also possible to detect and control web beacons that are present on web pages by downloading a plug-in for your browser.

Where can I get more information about cookies?

Comprehensive information on how organizations use cookies is available at: www.allaboutcookies.org

List of cookies

The list of GfK and third party cookies below was current 5 October 2016. It is updated at least annually.

GfK cookies

None

Third party cookies

www.etracker.com

Cookie name: _et_coid
Duration: 2 years
Purpose: Set by GfK’s website analytics provider, eTracker, to keep track of repeat visitors.

Cookie name: et_id
Duration: 2 years
Purpose: Set by GfK’s website analytics provider, eTracker, to keep track of repeat visitors.

Cookie name: etcnt_252903
Duration: 30 days
Purpose: Set by GfK’s website analytics provider, eTracker, to keep track of repeat visitors.

Cookie name: noWS_DKbY3K
Duration: Session
Purpose: Set by GfK’s website analytics provider, eTracker, to keep track of repeat visitors.

www.hubspot.com

Cookie name: __hstc
Duration: 2 years
Purpose: Set by our marketing partner HubSpot, inc. The main cookie for tracking visitors.

Cookie name: hubspotutk
Duration: 10 years
Purpose: Set by our marketing partner HubSpot, inc. This cookie is used for to keep track of a visitor's identity. This cookie is passed to HubSpot on form submission and used when deduplicating contacts.

Cookie name: __hssc
Duration: 30 minutes
Purpose: Set by our marketing partner HubSpot, inc. Cookie for keeping track of sessions. This is used to determine if we should increment the session number and timestamps in the __hstc cookie.

Cookie name: __hssrc
Duration: Session
Purpose: Set by our marketing partner HubSpot, inc. Whenever HubSpot changes the session cookie, this cookie is also set.
Cookie name: __hs_opt_out
Duration: 2 years
Purpose: Set by our marketing partner HubSpot, inc. This cookie is used by the opt-in privacy policy to remember not to ask the user to accept cookies again.

Cookie name: __hs_do_not_track
Duration: 2 years
Purpose: Set by our marketing partner HubSpot, inc. This cookie is set when you opt out of our cookie policy. It disables tracking and personalization.

Cookie name: __hs_testcookie
Duration: Session
Purpose: Set by our marketing partner HubSpot, inc. This cookie used to test whether the visitor has support for cookies enabled.
Cookie name: hsPagesViewedThisSession
Duration: Session cookie
Purpose: Set by our marketing partner HubSpot, inc. This cookie used to keep track of page views in a session.

Cookie name: hsfirstvisit
Duration: 10 years
Purpose: Set by our marketing partner HubSpot, inc. This cookie used to keep track of a user's first visit.