Our use of cookies

Cookies are small text files that are placed on your computer, mobile phone or tablet by websites that you visit. 

Acas uses cookies to make parts of our website work. We also use them to collect information about how our website is used so we can measure and improve our services.

The cookies Acas uses cannot be used to identify you personally.

Cookies set by our websites

These are cookies set by:

Each of these cookies are known as 'first-party' cookies.


  • Purpose: to allow people to increase or decrease the font size of web content through the icons at the top of the website – the cookie remembers the selection
  • Benefit: to remember your selections or preferences that you've already made when looking at information or using a service
  • Data stored: a selection between small/med/large/verylarge to indicate the font size to use on the website
  • Duration: expires when you close the browser

ASP.NET_SessionId, Clientvars, Mode, CFID, CFTOKEN

  • Purpose: these cookies are a 'session identifier', which allows the site to recognise your movement around the site as being from one computer
  • Benefit: to remember the selections or preferences you've already made when looking at information or using a service
  • Data stored: information about the session – the cookie itself contains no personal information
  • Duration:
    • ASP.NET_SessionId: expires when you close the browser
    • Clientvars: 2 days
    • Mode: 99 days
    • CFID and CFTOKEN: 30 years


  • Purpose: to record that you have accepted cookies set by the Acas website
  • Benefit: hides the cookie banner notice once consent has been agreed
  • Data stored: information about consent confirmation – the cookie itself contains no personal information
  • Duration: 3 months

Cookies that measure website use

Google Analytics cookies

We use Google Analytics to find out how people interact with our site. This helps us understand your needs and allows us to improve our services.

Google Analytics stores information about what pages you have visited, how you arrived there and how long you spend on the site. We do not collect or store any personal information used to identify who you are such as your name or address. Also, we do not allow Google to use or share our analytics data.

Cookies used by Google Analytics: _ga, _gid, _gat

  • Purpose: to record how many people are using the Acas website and how they move around the site once they have arrived

  • Benefit: so we can monitor website performance and improve our service
  • Data stored: no personal information about you, just information about your computer and your browser
  • Duration:
    • _ga: expires 2 years after your last visit to this website
    • _gid: expires 24 hours after your visit
    • _gat: expires after 1 minute

For more information about Google Analytics cookies, see the Google privacy policy.

Google Optimize

We use Google Optimize when trying out different versions of pages to see which works better ('multivariate testing'). We’ll save a cookie so that you always see the same version of the pages we’re testing.

Cookie used by Google Optimize: _gaexp 

  • Purpose: to show people different versions of pages when we’re testing
  • Benefit: so we can test and improve our pages
  • Data stored: information about which version you’ll see
  • Duration: after the test has finished, usually within 4 weeks

Hotjar cookies

Cookies used by Hotjar: _hjClosedSurveyInvites, _hjDonePolls, _hjMinimizedPolls, _hjDoneTestersWidgets, _hjMinimizedTestersWidgets, _hjIncludedInSample, _hjShownFeedbackMessage, _hjid

  • Purpose: to record how people interact with the Acas website and support interactive services provided through Hotjar, for example surveys, polls and user-testing recruitment
    • _hjClosedSurveyInvites is set if you interact with a survey invitation modal popup and is used to make sure the same invite does not reappear if it has already been shown
    • _hjDonePolls is set if you complete a poll using the Feedback Poll widget and is used to make sure the same poll does not reappear if you already filled it in
    • _hjMinimizedPolls is set if you minimise a Feedback Poll widget and is used to make sure the widget stays minimised when you navigate through the website
    • _hjDoneTestersWidgets is set if you submit your information in the Recruit User Testers widget and is used to make sure the same form does not reappear if you already filled it in
    • _hjMinimizedTestersWidgets is set if you minimise a Recruit User Testers widget and is used to make sure the widget stays minimised when you navigate through the website
    • _hjIncludedInSample is a session cookie set to let Hotjar know if you'll be included in the sample that's used to generate funnels
    • _hjShownFeedbackMessage is set when you minimise or complete Incoming Feedback, so that the Incoming Feedback will be minimised if you navigate to another page where it is set to show
    • _hjid is set when you first land on a page with the Hotjar script and is used to store your random user ID, unique to using the website on your browser. This makes sure that your subsequent visits to the website will be attributed to the same user ID
  • Benefit: so we understand where our website might not be meeting your needs and can make improvements
  • Data stored: no personal information about you, just information about your computer, your browser and your interactions
  • Duration: 365 days

Cookies set by other websites

We want to encourage better sharing and more engaging content by making the most of social sharing and embedded videos on our websites.

We use a number of suppliers who may also set cookies on their websites on our behalf, which are known as 'third-party' cookies. These cookies are placed to make sure that all of them work effectively allowing better sharing of Acas advice.

Cookies used by YouTube: SID, HSID, SSID and VISITOR_INFO1_LIVE

  • Purpose: to record how many visitor views each YouTube video embedded on various pages of the Acas website receives
  • Benefit: when we provide links to third-party services you find useful, they might place a cookie on your device to make their service easier to use
  • Data stored: unique identifier, no personal information (data is only used in aggregate)
  • Duration: all expire after 10 years, except VISITOR_INFO1_LIVE that expires 6 months after it was last set

For more information about YouTube cookies, see the Google privacy policy.

How to control and delete cookies

We will not use cookies to collect personally identifiable information about you.

However, if you wish to restrict or block the cookies which are set by our websites, or any other website, you can do this through your browser settings. The 'help' function within your browser should tell you how.

To find out more about controlling and deleting cookies, see the guide to cookies from the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO).

Be aware that restricting cookies may affect the functionality of our website.

To view your cookie code, click on a cookie to open it. You'll see a short string of text and numbers. The numbers are your identification card, which can only be seen by the server that gave you the cookie.

For information on how to do this on the browser of your mobile phone you will need to refer to your handset manual. To opt out of third-party websites collecting any data about your interaction on our website, see their websites for more information.