Privacy Statement

STFC may collect personal information from you via this website, for example, if you register with us for services, in order to receive news and announcements, or when applying for jobs, and your information may be stored manually or electronically.

Any personal information you give to us will always be processed in accordance with the UK Data Protection Act 1998. We will only use the personal information you provide to deliver the services you have requested, or for our lawful, disclosed purposes. We will not make your personal details available outside our organisation without your consent, unless obliged by law.

This website will automatically track certain information about you in the course of you using this website, such as your IP address and browser identification. This information is used only for system administration and for providing statistics to evaluate use of this site. We do not use cookies for collecting personal information from this site. (A cookie is a small amount of data that is sent to your browser from a web server and stored on your computer`s hard drive.)

Questions regarding this Privacy Policy should be addressed in writing to:

The Data Protection Officer
Science and Technology Facilities Council
Polaris House
Swindon, UK


When we provide services, we want to make them easy, useful and reliable. This sometimes involves placing small amounts of information on your device, for example, computer or mobile phone. These include small files known as cookies. They cannot be used to identify you personally.

These pieces of information are used to improve services for you through, for example:

  • enabling a service to recognise your device so you don`t have to give the same information during one task,
  • recognising that you have already given a username and password so you don`t need to enter it for every web page requested,
  • measuring how many people are using services, so they can be made easier to use and that there is enough capacity to ensure they are fast.

You may refuse to accept cookies by activating the setting on your browser which allows you to refuse the setting of cookies. Unless you have adjusted your browser setting so that it will refuse cookies, our system will issue "session cookies" cookies when you visit our site.

For more information on cookies, and how to delete and control them visit (link opens in a new window) or (link opens in a new window).

Our use of cookies

The list below shows all of the cookies that are set by the Science and Technology Research Council and the third-party services we use.

Cookies for managing your current visit

These are cookies set by the STFC website (known as 'first-party' cookies). They are used to remember the selections or preferences that you’ve made when looking at the information on this site.


  • Purpose: Used to maintain an anonymous user session by the server.
  • Expires: At end of session (when you close your browser).


  • Purpose: Used to determine whether or not to show the mobile format of the website.
  • Expires: At end of session (when you close your browser).


  • Purpose: Used to anonymously track sessions within the website.
  • Expires: Never.


  • Purpose: This is known as a ColdFusion cookie. It gives you a unique ID for the duration of your session on the website. It does this to track your path through the website and helps the website perform to the best of its ability.
  • Expires: Never.


  • Purpose: Used in conjunction with cfid this cookie helps to uniquely identify a client device (browser) to enable the site to maintain user session variables.
  • Expires: Never.

Cookies for measuring website usage

We use Google Analytics to collect information about how people use this site. We do this to make sure it’s meeting its users’ needs and to understand how we could do it better.

Google Analytics sets cookies to help us accurately estimate the number of visitors to the website and volumes of usage. This is to ensure that the website is available when you want it and to help us understand what you want to use.

For further details on the cookies set by Google Analytics, please refer to the Google Code (link opens in a new window) website

Google Analytics cookies


  • Purpose: Google Analytics cookie used to distinguishes unique users by assigning a randomly generated number as a client identifier. It is included in each page request
  • Expires: 2 Years.


  • Purpose: Google Analytics cookie used to throttle the request rate - limiting the collection of data on high traffic sites.
  • Expires: 10 Minutes.

Cookies set by other websites through this site

We want to provide interesting and engaging content on our website. On a number of pages we use Google maps and we embed YouTube videos in some pages.

The suppliers of these services may also set cookies on your device when you visit the pages where we have used this type of content. These are known as 'third-party' cookies.

Google Maps: NID

  • Purpose: Enables traffic analysis to Google Maps.
  • Benefit: When we provide links to third party services you find useful, they may place a cookie on your device to make their service easier to use. Google's privacy policy (link opens in a new window).
  • Data stored by the cookie: A unique identifier; data only used in aggregate.
  • Duration of cookie: Expires after 183 days.

YouTube cookie: VISITOR_INFO1_LIVE

  • Purpose: To track visitor views of YouTube (link opens in a new window) videos embedded in BIS web pages.
  • Benefit: When we provide links to third party services you find useful, they may place a cookie on your device to make their service easier to use. YouTube is owned by Google: Google's privacy policy (link opens in a new window).
  • Data stored by cookie: Unique identifier, no personal information (data is only used in aggregate).
  • Duration of cookie: Expires after 241 days.

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 indeed any other website, you can do this through your browser settings. The ‘Help’ function within your browser should tell you how.

Alternatively, you may wish to visit the About Cookies (link opens in a new window) website, which contains comprehensive information on how to do this on a wide variety of browsers. You will also find details on how to delete cookies from your machine as well as more general information about cookies.

Please be aware that restricting cookies may have an impact upon the functionality of our website.

If you wish to view your cookie code, just 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-parties collecting any data regarding your interaction on our website, please refer to their websites for further information.