Our Cookie Privacy
Commitment

Privacy

At Merck & Co., Inc. (Kenilworth, NJ, USA), which conducts business outside of the U.S. and Canada as Merck, Sharp & Dohme (MSD),1 our privacy commitment begins with our four privacy values of respect, trust, preventing harm and compliance. When we collect information from you online, our Internet Privacy Policy applies. Our Cookie Privacy Commitment supports our Internet Privacy Policy by providing more detail about the types of cookies and similar technologies that our web sites, web applications and other online services use (which we refer to collectively as “web sites”) and how you can control cookies on your computer or mobile device.

What is a cookie?

A cookie is a small data file, typically a text file of letters and numbers, that is set by either our web sites (these are called “first party cookies”) or by other web sites that provide the content or features on the web page that you are viewing (these are called “third party cookies”). Cookies are sent by the web servers for our web sites, or by the web servers for the third party content provided on our sites, and are stored on your computer or mobile device. Cookies enable the web site that set the cookie to store small bits of information on your computer and retrieve that information at a later time. Unlike flash cookies, which we describe below, each cookie is unique to the web browser you are using on your computer or mobile device, so if you visit our web sites from multiple devices or multiple web browsers, our web sites will set separate cookies on each device and browser.

Other technologies that perform functions similar to cookies include:

  • single-pixel tags, which also are known as web beacons, web tags and clear GIFs, are graphics that function similar to cookies. The tags are not visible when viewing a web page or email because of their small size.
  • ETags are unique values used for web page caching that allow a web site visitor to be recognized in subsequent visits.
  • Scripts are code that is embedded into some of our web pages that provide certain information about your web browser to the code provider when you visit those web pages.

Our web sites that use Adobe Flash Player to deliver media content, such as video clips, use a different cookie called a flash cookie, also known as a local shared object. Flash cookies are used by the Adobe Flash Player and can contain not only the type of information stored in other cookies, but also information specific to Adobe Flash Player, such as where a video stopped playing on your device. Flash cookies are also capable of storing more information than other cookies. Flash cookies are also different from other cookies in that they are able to share information among different web browsers on your device.

Why do we use cookies?

Cookies help us make your experience on our web sites more efficient and relevant for you. Cookies serve many functions. They can help remember your user name and preferences, analyze how well our web sites are performing, and enable us to recommend content that we believe may be most relevant to you. Most cookies identify your device’s web browser rather than identifying you personally, however, as described further below, certain cookies can be linked to other personal information we collect from or about you.

We use both session cookies, which are temporary cookies that are erased from your device’s memory when you close your Internet browser or turn your computer off, and persistent cookies, which are stored on your device until they expire, unless you delete them before that time.

Session cookies enable our web sites to remember your preferences on our web sites during the duration of your visit to our web site and until you close your web browser, such as whether you have identified yourself as a health care professional or a resident of a particular country.

Certain types of persistent cookies, which we refer to as analytics cookies, enable us to tell whether your device’s Internet browser has been used to visit our web sites before as well as which pages you have visit on our websites. If you register an account on one of our web sites, persistent cookies, which we refer to as registration cookies, enable our web sites to remember you personally when you visit our web sites in the future. If you are signed in to our web sites, we may combine information about you from registration cookies and analytics cookies to identify which pages you have visited on our web sites. In the United States, if you leave one of our web sites without becoming a registered user we may use cookies in conjunction with third parties to serve advertisements to your computer or other electronic device to remind you about our web site that that you had previously visited.

 

What categories of cookies do we use and what are your options to control them?

We have grouped the cookies our web sites use into five categories to help you understand the purposes for which they are used and the options you have to control them. We describe these categories and choices further below. Many of our web sites provide a cookie preferences tool for directly controlling the cookies used by those sites. The tool is accessible on those sites by clicking on a button or banner labeled “Cookies” or “Cookie Preferences.”

With the exception of flash cookies and ETags, if you are using a recent version of a web browser, you can control how cookies are set directly through your web browser. Specific instructions on how to control cookies based on the type of web browser on your device are available here.

  • Flash cookies are controlled separately from other types of cookies, so even if you have specified the cookie settings in your web browser, if you want to control flash cookies, you will need to follow the instructions provided by Adobe for managing these cookies through its Settings Manager.
  • ETags also are controlled separately from flash cookies, other types of cookies and scripts. In order to remove ETags, you also need to clear your web browser cache.
  • Scripts also are controlled separately from flash cookies, other types of cookies and ETags. Scripts can be controlled from within some web browsers. For example, if you are using Chrome, you can control scripts by going to the Settings tab in your browser, scrolling down to Privacy, clicking on the Content Settings button, and selecting among the options available under JavaScript.

Our Cookie Categories How These Cookies Are Used Your Choices
Necessary (may also be referred to as “Required” or “Strictly Necessary”) These cookies are essential to enable services that you specifically have asked for, such as to access secure areas of our web sites or to remember products you have placed in a shopping cart on some of our sites. These session cookies are stored only temporarily while you are using our web sites and are deleted from your device once you close your browser. Since these cookies are strictly necessary for certain of our web sites to operate, our cookie preferences tools do not enable you to control these cookies. If you set your browser not to accept them, you will not be able to use the sections of our web sites that depend on them.
Functionality (may also be referred to as “Site Experience”) These cookies enable core site functionality, such as enabling our web sites to remember you as a unique visitor and your choices so that we can improve your experience on our web sites, such as remembering your language preference, the country in which you are located and whether you are a health care professional. These cookies are also used on some parts of our web sites to provide services you have requested, such as watching a video, including videos or other content that are delivered by third parties through our web sites. Like Necessary cookies, our sites depend on Functionality cookies in order to deliver content and features that you request when using our web sites. By using our web sites that use these types of cookies, you are agreeing that we can place them on your device. You can control the use of these cookies either by electing not to designate certain preferences offered on our web sites, or by controlling these cookies through your browser settings as described above. If you set your browser not to accept these cookies, certain functionality on our web sites may not work.
Performance and Analytics (may also be referred to as “Operation”) These cookies allow us to analyze web site usage or e-mail usage so we can measure trends and improve performance. For example, whether or not you have visited our web sites before, which web pages you and other visitors to our sites prefer, how many unique users visit our web sites, and how many recipients of certain email communications click on the web site links in those emails. Unless you are a registered user of our web sites and are signed in, we cannot use these cookies to identify you. If you are signed in, we can use these cookies to link your use of our web sites to your registration information or other personal information we may have collected about you. Some of our web sites have cookie preferences tools that enable you to control these cookies. You also can set your browser not to accept these cookies. Some of these cookies are set by us and some are set by third parties. You can use the cookie settings in your browser to choose to block third party cookies without affecting the cookies that are set by us.
Advertising and Cross-site tracking These cookies are used by advertising companies to serve ads that are relevant to your interests, such as in the United States to remind you about the content of one of our web sites that you previously visited. They also may be used by third parties to track which web sites you visit. Some of our web sites have cookie preferences tools that enable you to control these cookies. You also can set your browser not to accept these third party cookies.
Social Media These cookies may be used by social media sites, such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, to track articles that you share and to track social network users when they visit our web sites. Some of our web sites have cookie preferences tools that enable you to control these cookies. You also can set your browser not to accept these third party cookies.
Are there other ways to control third party cookies?

If you would like to opt-out of the cookies set by other companies who deliver e-mail communications on our behalf or place our advertisements on other web sites, you may do so by following the options provided by:

If you are using mobile services provided by or on our behalf of that use the analytics provider, Flurry, to track use of the mobile services, you can opt-out of tracking by Flurry at:

How will I know whether this Cookie Privacy Commitment has been updated?

We may update this Commitment periodically. We reserve the right to modify, add or remove portions of this Commitment at our discretion. If we decide to change this Commitment, we will post the updated version on www.msd.com/privacy. If the changes are material, we will post the changes prior to the effective date of the change.

This Cookie Privacy Commitment was effective on: 21 December 2016

 

 

1 Throughout this policy, our references to “us,” “we,” and “our” means Merck & Co., Inc. (Kenilworth, NJ, USA), its successors, subsidiaries, divisions and groups worldwide, excluding joint ventures to which we are a party.