Bright Horizons Global Cookie and Similar Technologies Notice

Owner:  Privacy Department
Approver:  Global Privacy Officer
Version: January 2023
Last reviewed: December 2022


Bright Horizons websites and applications use cookies and similar technologies to distinguish you from other users. This helps us to provide you with an optimised experience when you interact with our websites and applications and allows us to make continual improvements to this website. A cookie is a small file of letters and numbers that we store on your browser or hard drive of your device used to visit this website. We also use similar technologies that help us understand the use of our websites and applications.  This Global Cookie and Similar Technologies Notice provides you with information about cookies and similar technologies we use and how to control them for this website.

Terms used in this Cookie Notice

Affiliate” — an affiliate is a website operator who can send traffic to our website using links from another website. The affiliate is paid an agreed commission from the referral by Bright Horizons.

First-Party and Third-Party Cookies— whether a cookie is ‘first’ or ‘third’ party refers to the domain placing the cookie. First-Party cookies are those set by us when visited by the user at the time — the website displayed in the URL window. Third-Party cookies are cookies that are set by a domain other than us. If a user visits our website and another entity sets a cookie through our website, then this would be a Third-Party cookie.

Persistent Cookies” — these cookies remain on a user’s device for the period of time specified in the cookie.

Session Cookies— these cookies allow us to link the actions of a user during a browser session. A browser session starts when a user opens the browser window and finishes when they close the browser. Session cookies are created temporarily and once you close the browser, all session cookies are deleted.

Performance Cookies” – these cookies are also known as “analytics cookies” and collect information about how visitors use our website. This information is aggregated to provide us insights in how the website is being used.

“Social Media Cookies” – these cookies are set by third-party social media platforms that have been integrated into our website. For example, cookies from social networking sites like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn can be classified as social media cookies.

What’s a Cookie?

A cookie is a small text file that a website saves on your computer or mobile device when you visit the website. Cookies are then sent back to the originating website on each subsequent visit, or to another website that recognises that cookie, to develop a record of the user’s online activity. Cookies on this website may be delivered in a first-party (set by the Bright Horizons website) or third-party (set by the third-party cookie domain) context and may also be set in association with emails you receive from us.

Cookies help us enhance your experience when using the website. They also help us understand how people use our website, such as which pages are most popular, so that we can make continuous improvements for delivering an optimum experience.

What are “Similar Technologies”?

Functions usually performed by a cookie can be achieved by other means. This could include, for example, using certain characteristics to identify devices so that visits to a website can be analysed. Examples include HTML5 local storage, fingerprinting techniques and technologies like scripts, tracking pixels and plugins.

Bright Horizons uses some software which are similar technologies to help us understand our websites and applications through the eyes of our end users.  This software helps us troubleshoot bugs, support our customers, and build better user experiences.  It may record any of the following information:

  • Usage patterns such as clicks, mouse movements, scrolling and typing.Usage patterns illuminate areas of a website or app that are confusing or underused, allowing our web designers to improve our customer experience and build better features.
  • Technical specifications such as browser, device type, operating system, viewfinder size, script errors and IP address. Because bugs and errors are often particular to a specific web browser or device type, this information helps developers build and ship fixes faster.
  • Navigation information such as pages visited, referrers, URL parameters and session duration.Knowing the most popular pages and sources of referral traffic help us improve the quality of content.
  • Personal information such as full name, employer (if applicable), IP address, home country, state and zip/postal code.Account information helps us understand your unique experience and troubleshoot any problems you may be having.

Is a Cookie or Similar Technology part of my personal data/information?

“Personal data,” “personal information” and “personally identifiable information” have become common terms used across jurisdictions around world and are used in various statutes and regulations in different contexts and are assigned different meanings. For example, under the California Privacy Rights Act 2020 (CPRA), the term “personal information” refers to any information that “identifies, relates to, describes, is reasonably capable of being associated with, or could reasonably be linked, directly or indirectly, with a particular consumer or household.” The CPRA includes a non-exhaustive list of data types that fall within that definition. That list includes “unique personal identifiers,” a term which itself is defined as including “cookies” that are used to “recognise a . . . device that is linked to a consumer or family, over time and across different services.” In this context, certain cookies will be considered “personal information” for the purposes of the CPRA.

Similarly, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) defines personal data as “any information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person.” Where such link exists, then such a cookie becomes part of the set of “personal data.”

Cookies & Similar Technologies Used on our Website

Not all cookies & similar technologies are the same or have the same purpose. We use the following five types of cookies on our website:

  1. Strictly Necessary Cookies
  2. Performance Cookies
  3. Functional Cookies
  4. Social Media Cookies
  5. Targeting Cookies

See also How do I Disable/Enable Cookies?

Strictly Necessary Cookies

These cookies are also referred to as “first-party essential cookies” and “session cookies”. These session cookies are essential to enable you to navigate the website and use its features, such as accessing secure areas of the website. These cookies are strictly necessary for the website to function and can’t be switched off in our systems. They’re usually only set in response to actions made by you that amount to a request for services, such as booking a tour of a nursery or center; setting your privacy preferences; logging in or filling in forms. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the website won’t work as a result. These cookies don’t store any personal data/information or personally identifiable information (PII).

Examples include:

  • Remembering a choice such as not to be asked again to fill in a questionnaire.
  • Providing information to allow an optional service to function such as offering a live chat session.
  • Fulfilling a request by you, such as submitting a comment.

Performance Cookies

These cookies are also referred to as “first-party cookies”, “third-party cookies” or “performance cookies”. These cookies allow us or third-parties to count visits, traffic sources and collect information about how visitors use our website. We do this so we can measure and optimise the user experience. For example, we can learn which pages visitors go to most often and if they get error messages from webpages. All information these cookies collect is aggregated and therefore anonymous, so won’t identify you personally. If you don’t allow these cookies on the device you use to visit the website, we’ll not know when you’ve visited our website and won’t be to monitor its performance.

Examples include:

  • Web analytics — where the data collected is used in managing the performance and design of the website. These cookies can be third-party cookies, but the information is for our exclusive use only of the publisher of the website visited.
  • Advertising response rates — where the data is used exclusively for calculating response rates (click-through rates) to improve the effectiveness of advertising purchased on a site external to the destination website. This data can’t be used to re-target adverts on a third-party site.
  • Affiliate tracking — where the cookie allows the affiliate of Bright Horizons to improve the effectiveness of their website. This data can’t be used to re-target adverts on a third-party site.
  • Error management — this cookie measures errors presented on our website, typically this will be to support service improvement or complaint management and will generally be closely linked with web analytics.
  • Testing designs — cookies allow us to test variations of website design, typically using A/B or multivariate testing, to ensure a consistent look and feel is maintained for the user of the website in the current and subsequent sessions.

Functional Cookies

These cookies enable the website to provide enhanced functionality and personalisation. They may be set by us or by third party providers whose services we have added to our pages.    If you do not allow these cookies then some or all of these services may not function properly.

Examples include:

  • Cookies which record your preferred settings to enable localisation functionality such as language.
  • Cookies which ensure consistency in the information displayed to you (for instance, ensuring a consistent contact number for us is provided to you).
  • Cookies which enable us to capture information about your user experience for the purposes of better understanding and improving our websites / applications and troubleshooting any issues you experience.

Targeting Cookies

These cookies may be set through our site by us or by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites. They may be based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you don’t allow these cookies, the advertising you will experience will be less targeted .

Examples include:

  • Cookies may be used to limit the number times a user sees a particular ad on our website and to measure the effectiveness of a particular campaign.
  • Cookies placed by advertising networks to collect browsing habits in order to target relevant adverts to the user. The website the user is visiting need not actually be serving adverts, but often this will also be the case.
  • Cookies placed by advertising networks in conjunction with a service implemented by the website to increase functionality, such as commenting on a blog, adding a website to the user’s social network, providing maps or counters of visitors to a website.

Social Media Cookies

These cookies are also referred to as “analytics cookies” and are always “third-party cookies”. These cookies may be set through our website by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other websites. They don’t store personal data/information directly but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you don’t allow these cookies, the advertising you experience will be less targeted.

These cookies are set by a range of social media services, such as Facebook, TikTok, YouTube and LinkedIn. We’ve added these to the website to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. These cookies can track your browser across other websites and building up a profile of your interests and can impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit. If you don’t allow these cookies you may not be able to use or see these social media sharing tools.

Examples include:

  • Google Analytics cookies are used to collect information about how visitors use our website. These cookies collect information in the aggregate to give us insight into how our website is being used. We anonymize IP addresses in Google Analytics, and the anonymized data is transmitted to and stored by Google on servers in the US.
  • Cookies may be used to collect personal information (such as name, pages visited, and purchase history) to link a visitor to the recipient of an email marketing campaign. This marketing cookie only stores your unique identifying browser and device information.

How do I Disable/Enable Cookies?

You have the option of being able to accept or reject cookies by modifying the settings in your browser and the cookie banner on our website. You should be aware that you may not be able to use all the interactive features of our website if cookies are disabled.

To manage settings on cookies through the banner, click on the banner and you’ll be provided with cookie preferences.

The tool will record when you have consented to our cookie policy and will ask for consent again annually to ensure users stay up-to-date with changes to our cookie and privacy policies. The consent tool specifically controls the marketing cookies and analytical cookies set by using our primary public websites. First-party essential cookies can’t be disabled nor can the tool be used to block cookies on third-party websites linked from our website.

To manage cookies in a web browser, you should go to Tools/Internet options/Security and Privacy Tabs to adapt the browser to your preferences. If you use different devices in different locations, you’ll need to ensure that each browser is adjusted to suit your cookie preferences.

Universal Opt Out Signals: Do Not Track and Global Privacy Control

Bright Horizons recognizes the following Universal Opt Out Signals:

You can read about how to implement these tools by clicking on the links below:

(Each of these links open in a new window; please note we can't be responsible for the content of external websites.)

Can you delete Cookies & Similar Technologies?

You can easily delete any cookies that have been installed in the cookie folder of your browser.

How to delete Cookies & Similar Technologies if you’re using Microsoft Windows Explorer:

  • Open 'Windows Explorer'
  • Click on the 'Search' button on the tool bar
  • Type "cookie" into the search box for 'Folders and Files'
  • Select 'My Computer' in the 'Look In' box
  • Click 'Search Now' Double click on the folders that are found
  • 'Select' any cookie file
  • Hit the 'Delete' button on your keyboard

How to delete Cookies & Similar Technologies if you’re using Google Chrome:

  • Open ' On your computer, open Chrome.
  • At the top right, click More .
  • Click More tools. Clear browsing data.
  • At the top, choose a time range. To delete everything, select All time.
  • Next to "Cookies and other site data" and "Cached images and files," check the boxes.
  • Click Clear data.

If you’re not using Microsoft Windows Explorer or Google Chrome, then you should select 'cookies' in the 'Help' function for information on where to find your cookie folder.

Cookies that have been set in the Past

Collection of your personal data/information from our analytics cookies can be deleted. If cookies are deleted, the information collected prior to the preference change may still be used, however, we’ll stop using the disabled cookie to collect any further information from your user experience. When a user opts out of being tracked for marketing purposes including targeted advertising, a new cookie is placed to prevent user data from being tracked. Users who have opted out may still see these cookies in a web browser, but data will not be collected.

Further Information

For further information, contact the Global Privacy Officer at [email protected]