Consumer Reports Cookie Policy

Effective Date: September 26, 2018

When you use our websites or other digital services or open our emails, we or our service providers may collect information through cookies, web beacons and other technologies. This Cookie Policy explains these technologies and how you can control their use. This policy applies to all Consumer Reports websites and other digital services that link to this policy.

These cookies and other technologies help make our digital services better and enhance the user experience by offering you a more relevant and customized experience. We also use cookies to monitor and stabilize our websites, measure the use and effectiveness of our content, remember you when you log in, and promote Consumer Reports products and services that are relevant to your interests.

This Cookie Policy should be read with the Consumer Reports Privacy Policy and the Consumer Reports User Agreement. We may change this Cookie Policy at any time. When we do so, we will update the date at the top of this policy.

What Are Cookies?
We use "cookies" to store, and sometimes to track, information about how you use our websites. A cookie is a small data file that is sent to your browser when you visit a website. It is stored, accessed and maintained on your computer's hard drive or on a tablet or mobile device. A cookie contains a unique number that allows our websites or another website to recognize your device each time you visit and remember information about you.

We use both temporary and persistent cookies. A temporary cookie (also referred to as a session cookie) tracks visitor activity during a session or visit and expires when you close your browser. We use them to provide continuity as you visit website pages. Persistent cookies are not deleted from your device after you close your browser. They store a unique credential that allows us to automatically log you back in if you are registered on CR.org so you do not have to re-enter your user name and password each time you visit. We or our service providers may also use Flash cookies (also referred to as Local Shared Objects or LSOs)

We may also use HTML5 local storage, a browser feature which, like cookies, allows for storing certain information on your computer in order to help provide a better user experience. Many Internet browsers allow you to disable HTML5 local storage or delete information contained in HTML5 local storage using browser controls.

We and our service providers also use web beacons (sometimes referred to as clear GIFs or pixels), often in conjunction with cookies. Web beacons are small pieces of code that are embedded on web pages and applications in order to provide us with information about how our sites and applications are used. We also use web beacons in HTML emails that we send to our visitors to determine whether the recipient has opened those emails and/or clicked on links in those emails.

Information collected
The information we collect through cookies and other technologies may include the following:

  • Standard server log information (e.g., your Internet Protocol (IP) address, browser and device type, operating system, name of your Internet service provider, date and time of your visit), and addresses of the websites you access before and after you visit a Consumer Reports website.
  • Geo-location information, which is information about your real-world location at a given time based on latitude and longitude. This information may be collected directly from your computer depending on how your settings are configured, or may be provided in other ways, for example, in the metadata of photographs you send to us that describe the time and place the photo was taken. For more information, see our complete Privacy Policy.
  • Information about your interactions with our content, Consumer Reports ads and communications.
  • Device information, including the device type you use to access our digital services, your device’s operating system, and unique device identifier information, which is a unique alphanumeric character string associated with an individual user’s smartphone or similar handheld device.

On their own, cookies, web beacons and other technologies do not contain or reveal information such as your name or email address. However, if you choose to furnish Consumer Reports with personally identifiable information, this information can be associated with the data collected using the cookies or other technologies.

Types of Cookies
We use the following types of cookies:

  • Strictly Necessary/Essential Cookies: These cookies are essential for our digital services to function correctly. They include cookies necessary to enable members to log in to CR.org, access account information, and use certain features and services available to CR members.
  • Functional and User Enhancement Cookies: These cookies allow us to remember you, your preferences and settings to help enhance the user experience.
  • Performance and Analytics Cookies: We use these cookies to monitor the performance and use of our digital services, test website features, help us make our marketing efforts more effective, and monitor compliance with our User Agreement and Privacy Policy. We may also use this information to inform our consumer product testing, improve our content and help our advocacy efforts.
  • Marketing Cookies: We use these cookies to promote Consumer Reports’ own products and services that are relevant to your interests. If you are located in the U.S. or Canada, we also use cookies to serve ads for CR products and services on other websites you visit. We may also send you emails or other communications regarding CR products and services. For example, if you view car-related content on CR.org, you may see an ad or receive an email or other communication about our Car Buying & Pricing Service or other CR product or service. Consumer Reports does not accept third-party advertising. You can opt out of interest-based advertising, as well as advertising on your mobile device, by visiting our Ad Choices manager or our cookie management tool described below.
  • Social Network Sharing Cookies: These cookies enable content sharing with social networking and similar sites (e.g. Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest). These third-party services might use information about your visit to our digital services to show you ads relevant to your interests when you visit their websites.

More Information about Third-Party Cookies
Certain third parties that provide us with services (e.g., Google and Adobe) employ their own cookies and similar technologies to collect information about your online activities when you visit CR.org and other websites.

  • We may use Google Analytics Advertising Features and its associated tracking technologies to help display the CR ads you see on other websites (if you are located in the U.S. or Canada), and to help us manage and optimize our online advertising efforts. To opt out of Google Analytics Advertising Features, visit Google’s Ad Settings page. Website users can also access the Google Analytics Opt Out Browser Add-on to opt out of being tracked by Google Analytics across all websites.
  • We may also use Adobe Analytics to collect information about your online activities. To opt out of Adobe Analytics cookies on our websites, click here.

How to Control Cookies
Browser Settings
The Help function on most web browsers contains information on how to set your browser to notify you before accepting cookies or to disable cookies entirely. For the cookies used by Adobe Flash, please be aware that they are not managed by the same browser settings as are used for other cookies, so you may need to follow separate instructions from Adobe to manage and delete Flash cookies. If you use more than one browser, you will have to adjust your cookie settings on each browser.

If you adjust your settings to reject cookies, you won't be able to take advantage of various features on our websites. If you are a CR member and you reject certain cookies on our CR.org website, you may not be able to use certain features of that site or enjoy full membership benefits.

You can learn more about managing cookies on popular browsers by clicking on the links below.


You can also manage cookies through the browser Settings function on your mobile device.

Cookie Management Tool
To help you manage cookies, you can use our cookie settings tool available here. If you use more than one browser, you will have to manage your cookies in each one.

For more information, please read Consumer Reports’ complete Privacy Policy and User Agreement.