We also use web beacons to help deliver cookies and compile analytics. These may include web beacons from third-party service providers.
You have a variety of tools to control cookies and similar technologies, including:
How to Control Cookies and Similar Technologies
Microsoft provides browser controls to help you manage cookies. You can also accept cookies but opt out of their use to behaviorally target advertisements. For instance, Microsoft’s advertising preference and opt-out controls are available at http://choice.live.com/advertisementchoice/.
Browser Controls to Block Cookies.
Most web browsers automatically accept cookies but allow you to modify your browser setting to block cookies. For example, in Internet Explorer 11, you can block cookies by taking the following steps:
Instructions for blocking cookies in other browsers are available at each browser’s privacy statement.
Please be aware that if you choose to block cookies, you may not be able to sign in or use other interactive features of Microsoft sites and services that depend on cookies, and any advertising preferences that are dependent on cookies may be lost.
Browser Controls to Delete Cookies.
If you accept cookies, you can delete them later. For example, in Internet Explorer 11, you can delete cookies by taking the following steps:
Instructions for deleting cookies in other browsers are available at each browser’s privacy statement.
Please be aware that if you choose to delete cookies, any settings and preferences controlled by those cookies, including advertising preferences, will be deleted and will need to be recreated.
Browser Controls for “Do Not Track” and Tracking Protection.
Some newer browsers have incorporated “Do Not Track” features. Most of these features, when turned on, send a signal or preference to the websites you visit indicating that you do not wish to be tracked. Those sites (or the third-party content on those sites) may continue to engage in activities you might view as tracking even though you have expressed this preference, depending on the sites’ privacy practices. Because there is not yet a common understanding of how to interpret the DNT signal, Microsoft does not currently respond to the browser DNT signals on its own websites or online services, or on third-party websites or online services where Microsoft provides advertisements, content or is otherwise able to collect information. We continue to work with the online industry to define a common understanding of how to treat DNT signals. In the meantime, users may continue to opt out of targeted ads from Microsoft as set forth below.
Internet Explorer (versions 9 and up) have a feature called Tracking Protection that helps prevent the websites you go to from automatically sending details about your visit to third-party content providers. When you add a Tracking Protection List, Internet Explorer will block third-party content, including cookies, from any site that is listed as a site to be blocked. By limiting calls to these sites, Internet Explorer will limit the information these third-party sites can collect about you. For more information about Tracking Protection Lists and Do Not Track, please see the Internet Explorer Privacy Statement or Internet Explorer Help.
Advertising Opt-Out Controls.
Individual advertising companies may also offer their own opt-out capabilities plus more advanced advertising choices. For instance, Microsoft’s advertising preference and opt-out controls are available at http://choice.live.com/advertisementchoice/. Please note that opting out does not mean that you will stop getting ads or see fewer ads; however, if you do opt out, the ads that you receive will no longer be behaviorally targeted. In addition, opting out does not stop information from going to our servers, but it does stop our creation or updating of profiles that might be used for behavioral advertising.
Third-Party Analytics Controls.
Some of the cookies we commonly use are listed in the following chart. This list is not exhaustive, but it is intended to illustrate the main reasons we typically set cookies. If you visit one of our websites, the site may set some or all of the following cookies:
Identifies unique browsers visiting Microsoft sites. It is used for advertising, site analytics and other operational purposes.
Contains the ANID, a unique identifier used to help identify which ads a customer may like. It is also used to preserve your choice to opt out of behaviorally targeted ads from Microsoft, if you have chosen to associate the opt-out with your Microsoft account.
Contains a country code as determined by reverse IP address lookup.
Microsoft account authentication
Authentication cookies (e.g., RPSTAuth, MSNRPSAuth, KievRPSAuth) used when you sign in with your Microsoft account.
Contains an encrypted version of your country, postal code, age, gender, language and occupation, if known, based on your Microsoft account profile.
Appears on co-branded sites where Microsoft is partnering with an advertiser. This cookie identifies the advertiser so the right ad is selected.
Maintains information about which ads you clicked on and where you clicked on the ad.
Records your decision not to receive behaviorally targeted ads delivered by Microsoft.
In addition to the cookies Microsoft may set when you visit our websites, third parties may also set cookies when you visit Microsoft sites. In some cases, that is because we have hired the third party to provide services on our behalf, such as site analytics. In other cases, it is because our web pages contain content or ads from third parties, such as videos, news content or ads delivered by other ad networks. Because your browser connects to those third parties’ web servers to retrieve that content, those third parties are able to set or read their own cookies on your device and may collect information about your online activities across websites or online services.
Our Use of Web Beacons
Microsoft web pages may contain electronic images known as web beacons - sometimes called single-pixel gifs - that may be used to help deliver cookies on our sites, count users who have visited those pages and deliver co-branded services. Sometimes we include web beacons in our promotional email messages or newsletters to determine whether messages have been opened and acted upon.
We sometimes work with other companies that advertise on Microsoft sites to place web beacons on their sites or in their advertisements to let us develop statistics on how often clicking on an advertisement on a Microsoft site results in a purchase or other action on the advertiser's site.
Finally, Microsoft sites may contain web beacons from third parties to help us compile aggregated statistics regarding the effectiveness of our promotional campaigns or other web site operations. These web beacons may allow the third parties to set or read a cookie on your computer. These companies may collect information about your online activities across websites or online servers, however, we prohibit third parties from using web beacons on our sites to collect or access information that directly identifies you (such as your name or email address). You may be able to opt out from data collection or use by these third-party analytics companies as described under “Third-Party Analytics Controls” above.
Other Similar Technologies
In addition to standard cookies and web beacons, websites can use other technologies to store and read data files on your computer. This may be done to maintain your preferences or to improve speed and performance by storing certain files locally. But, like standard cookies, these technologies can also be used to store a unique identifier for your computer, which can then be used to track online activity. These technologies include Local Shared Objects (or "Flash cookies"), HTML5 Local Storage and Silverlight Application Storage.
Local Shared Objects or "Flash cookies." Websites that use Adobe Flash technologies may use Local Shared Objects or "Flash cookies" to store data on your computer. To manage or block Flash cookies when using Windows, go to the Control Panel and select Flash Player. For other operating systems, learn more at http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/settings_manager.html.
Silverlight Application Storage. Websites or applications that use Microsoft Silverlight technology can store data on your device using Silverlight Application Storage. To learn how to manage or block such storage, visit the Silverlight Privacy Statement.
Microsoft collects many kinds of information in order to operate effectively and provide you the best products, services and experiences we can.
We collect information when you register, sign in and use our sites and services. We also may get information from other companies.
We collect this information in a variety of ways, including from web forms, technologies like cookies, web logging and software on your computer or other device.
Microsoft collects many kinds of information in order to operate effectively and provide you the best products, services and experiences we can. Some of this information you provide directly to us. Some of it we get by observing how you interact with our products and services. Some of it is available from other sources that we may combine with the data we collect directly. Regardless of the source, we believe it's important to treat that information with care and to help you maintain your privacy.
What we collect:
When you are asked to provide personal information, you may decline. But if you choose not to provide the information, you may not be able to use some features or services.
How we collect:
We use a number of methods and technologies to gather information about how you use our sites and services, such as:
Microsoft uses information it collects from you for human resources purposes. Human resources purposes include:
If you are hired as a Microsoft employee, this information may be used for additional employment and business purposes.
We will share your personal information with your consent. For example, we share your content with third parties when you tell us to do so, such as when you send an email to a friend, share photos and documents on OneDrive or link accounts with another service.
We may share or disclose personal information with other Microsoft controlled subsidiaries and affiliates, and with vendors or agents working on our behalf. For example, companies we've hired to provide customer service support or assist in protecting and securing our systems and services may need access to personal information in order to provide those functions. In such cases, these companies must abide by our data privacy requirements and are not allowed to use the information for any other purpose. We may also disclose personal information as part of a corporate transaction such as a merger or sale of assets.
Finally, we may access, disclose and preserve your personal information, including your private content (such as the content of your emails, other private communications or files in private folders), when we have a good faith belief that doing so is necessary to:
Please note that some of our sites and services include links to sites or services of third parties that have privacy practices different from those of Microsoft. If you submit personal information to any of those sites or services, your information is governed by the privacy statements of those third parties.
Some Microsoft services give you the ability to view or edit your personal information online. To help prevent others from viewing your personal information, you first will be required to sign in. How you can access your personal information will depend on which sites or services you have used.
Some Microsoft services give you the ability to view or edit your personal information online. To help prevent your personal information from being viewed by others, you first will be required to sign in. The method(s) for accessing your personal information will depend on which sites or services you have used.
Microsoft.com - You can access and update your profile on microsoft.com by visiting the Microsoft.com Profile Center.
Microsoft Billing and Account Services - If you have a Microsoft Billing account, you can update your information at the Microsoft Billing website by clicking on the "Personal Information" or "Billing Information" links.
Microsoft Connect - If you are a registered user of Microsoft Connect, you can access and edit your personal information by clicking Manage Your Connect Profile at the Microsoft Connect website.
Microsoft account - If you wish to update the profile information on your Microsoft account, change your password, add security information, view the unique ID associated with your credentials or close your account, you can do so by visiting Microsoft account services.
Public Profile - If you have created a public profile with your Microsoft account, you may edit or delete information in your public profile by going to your profile.
Search Advertising - If you buy search advertising through Bing Ads, you can review and edit your personal information at the Bing Ads website.
Microsoft Partner Programs - If you are registered with Microsoft Partner Programs, you can review and edit your profile by clicking Manage Your Account on the Partner Program website.
Xbox - If you use Xbox LIVE or Xbox.com, you can view or edit your personal information, including billing and account information, privacy settings, online safety and data sharing preferences by accessing My Xbox on the Xbox console or on the Xbox.com website. For account information select My Xbox, Accounts. For other personal information settings, select My Xbox, then Profile, then Online Safety Settings.
If you cannot access personal data collected by Microsoft sites or services via the links above, these sites and services may provide you with other ways to access to your data. You can contact Microsoft by using the web form. We will respond to requests to access or delete your personal information within 30 days.
If you receive promotional email messages from us and would like to stop getting them in the future, you can do so by following the directions in that message.
Depending on the respective service, you may also have the option of proactively making choices about the receipt of promotional email, telephone calls, and postal mail from particular Microsoft sites or services by visiting and signing into the following pages:
These choices do not apply to the display of online advertising: please refer to the section "Display of Advertising (Opt-out)" for information on this matter. Nor do they apply to the receipt of mandatory service communications that are considered part of certain Microsoft services, which you may receive periodically unless you cancel the service.
When you use a location based service or feature, available cell tower data, Wi-Fi data and Global Position System (GPS) data may be sent to Microsoft. Microsoft uses location information to provide the services you request, personalize your experience and improve Microsoft products and services.
Certain services may allow you to control when location information is sent to Microsoft or made available to others. In some cases, location information is essential to the service and may require uninstalling the feature or discontinuing the service to stop the sending of location information. Refer to the documentation that came with your device for information about how to turn off location features.
Learn more about
Below you will find additional privacy information you may (or may not) find important. Much of this describes common practices that we want you to know about but don't think it's necessary to highlight in every one of our privacy statements. And some of this is just stating the obvious (for example, we will disclose information when the law requires it), but our lawyers make us say it anyway. Please keep in mind that this information is not a complete description of our practices - this is all in addition to the other, more specific information contained in the privacy statements for each Microsoft product and service you use.
On this page:
Sharing or Disclosing Personal Information
In addition to any sharing described in the privacy statement for the product or service you are using, Microsoft may share or disclose personal information:
We also may share or disclose personal information, including the content of your communications:
Please note that our sites may include links to third-party sites whose privacy practices may differ from those of Microsoft. If you submit personal information to any of those sites, your information is governed by the privacy statements on those sites. We encourage you to review the privacy statement of any site you visit.
Protecting the Security of Personal Information
Microsoft is committed to protecting the security of your personal information. We use a variety of security technologies and procedures to help protect your personal information from unauthorized access, use or disclosure. For example, we store the personal information you provide on computer systems that have limited access and are in controlled facilities. When we transmit highly confidential information (such as a credit card number or password) over the Internet, we protect it through the use of encryption, such as the Secure Socket Layer (SSL) protocol.
If a password is used to help protect your accounts and personal information, it is your responsibility to keep your password confidential. Do not share it. If you are sharing a computer, you should always log out before leaving a site or service to protect access to your information from subsequent users.
Where Information is Stored and Processed
Personal information collected on Microsoft sites and services may be stored and processed in the United States or any other country where Microsoft or its affiliates, subsidiaries or service providers maintain facilities. Microsoft abides by the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework and the U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor Framework as set forth by the U.S. Department of Commerce regarding the collection, use, and retention of data from the European Economic Area, and Switzerland. To learn more about the Safe Harbor program, and to view our certification, please visit http://www.export.gov/safeharbor/.
Microsoft may retain your personal information for a variety of reasons, such as to comply with our legal obligations, resolve disputes, enforce our agreements, and as long as necessary to provide services. To learn how to access your personal information, visit Accessing Your Information.
Changes to Our Privacy Statements
We will occasionally update our privacy statements to reflect customer feedback and changes in our services. When we post changes to a statement, we will revise the "last updated" date at the top of the statement. If there are material changes to the statement or in how Microsoft will use your personal information, we will notify you either by prominently posting a notice of such changes before they take effect or by directly sending you a notification. We encourage you to periodically review the privacy statements for the products and services you use to learn how Microsoft is protecting your information.
How to Contact Us
Microsoft Privacy, Microsoft Corporation, One Microsoft Way, Redmond, Washington 98052 USA
Privacy at Microsoft
Controlling your online privacy
Security at Home
FTC Privacy Initiatives