Browsealoud Cookies and Privacy changes

Browsealoud Cookies and Privacy Information


Prior to version 3.0.0 of Browsealoud, launched in May 2020, Browsealoud would display drop down banners to end users for the following reasons:

  • Cookie declaration - users could opt out of cookies and Browsealoud would not load

  • A warning about secure pages - to inform users that their text would be sent to a Texthelp secure server when speech was being played

  • A warning about use of Google Translate services for the Translate feature

Banners have been removed from Browsealoud 3.0.0 onwards. It was felt that these were intrusive to the user and could be distracting and unhelpful. Browsealoud now provides you with tools to integrate user cookie choices in your own best practice cookie panel.

What you need to do

We now recommend that this information is included in your website’s own privacy policy page.

A suggested wording for text to add to this page is:

This website uses Browsealoud, an accessibility and reading support add-on that helps you to read the content. To learn more about Browsealoud, visit the Texthelp website.
Text to be spoken is sent via SSL to servers managed by Texthelp to generate and stream audio data.
Text for translation is sent via SSL to Google Translation servers.

Cookies

Browsealoud 3.0.0 uses Local Storage in the web browser to remember your settings for each website you use Browsealoud on. This stores information about translation languages, your user preferences such as colours, and translation languages. This does not include any personally identifiable information.

For full details of what we store, see this support article.

Under EU Cookie Law, use of Local Storage in the browser is considered equivalent to cookies, so users still need to be informed about the use of this and what information is stored.

A suggested wording for text to add to a website’s cookie policy is:

This website uses Browsealoud, an accessibility and reading support add-on that helps you to read the content. To learn more about Browsealoud, visit www.texthelp.com
Browsealoud stores some data in the Local Storage in your browser, to enable the add-on to work correctly and remember your preferences. Examples of preferences include colour choices, translation language choices, or screen mask configuration. Look at the Browsealoud user settings panel to see all the different types of information.
Browsealoud also stores the toolbar state. This ensures that when you enable an icon, it will remain enabled when you return to the website, or navigate to another page.
Browsealoud does not transmit any of this information to Texthelp servers.
Browsealoud also continues to use anonymised Google Analytics to collect general usage statistics to help us improve Browsealoud in future releases. This usage is considered to be a Tracking Cookie under EU Cookie Law, and it is important that users are able to opt out of this.
IP Anonymisation is used to ensure that both Google and Texthelp cannot identify individual users. Browsealoud does not log any personally identifiable information in these Analytics.

Browsealoud cookies could be considered Necessary Cookies under ICO guidance as they are essential to the operation of a feature on the website. However, if you wish, you can provide an option in your cookies panel to stop Browsealoud using cookies at all. Browsealoud cookies can be enabled or disabled at any point during the customers visit to your site.

This control needs to call the following code when the user turns off Browsealoud cookies:

BrowseAloud.disableBrowsealoudCookies();

This control needs to call the following code when the user turns on Browsealoud cookies:

BrowseAloud.enableBrowsealoudCookies();

The user may be given the ability to remove all settings cookies set by Browsealoud. This control needs to call the following code:

BrowseAloud.clearBrowsealoudData();

Similarly, users should be given the ability to turn on/off the Google Analytics Tracking Cookies in the same cookies panel. Google Analytics Cookies must be switched off before the Browsealoud toolbar has been launched thus if Analytics have been switched off by the user, the toolbar will not launch automatically on page load.

The disable control should call the following code to prevent Google Analytics being loaded:

BrowseAloud.disableBrowsealoudAnalytics();

The enable control should call the following code to re-enable Google Analytics:

BrowseAloud.enableBrowsealoudAnalytics();

Please be aware that if users block Google Analytics tracking cookies, this may impact your usage reports from Texthelp. However, as this is a mandatory requirement of EU Cookie Law, you must provide this option.

For assistance with this, please contact our Technical Support team: support@texthelp.com