In May 2012, new regulations were made enforcable, which state that website owners must gain consent from visitors before using cookies to track visitors on their website.
A cookie is a small piece of information which a website uses to store information on your computer. This allows the website to remember content from page to page, or to remember preferences set by a visitor. Cookies can be essential for web forms (for example, sending an email from a web page, contacting the website owner with a query, etc)
More information is available at allaboutcookies
3rd party cookies are cookies created by an external website or by a 3rd party software package. We do not currently use 3rd party cookies