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Internet user privacy is of paramount importance to Compaq Computer Corporation, our advertising sales partner DoubleClick, AltaVista advertisers, end-users and our web site affiliates. Below is information about our commitment to protecting the privacy and ensuring the integrity of the medium.

Philosophy of Inclusiveness

When we index the web, we look first for all publicly available web sites and then look for the most active web sites. This enables our users to find information based on a comprehensive and broad index that is representative of the entire worldwide web. For webmasters, our inclusiveness of sites regardless of size allows even small web sites to be found by the millions of users that utilize AltaVista everyday. In addition to our broad coverage of the web, by actively indexing the most active web sites - our users have access to the most up-to-date information on servers that tend to change on a regular basis.

We do not edit or judge content when we index, unless the content is in violation of our "Anti Index-Spamming" policy. When we provide search results to our end-users, we do not make assumptions about what a user is looking for. Instead, AltaVista provides search tools such as our Dynamic Categorization Technology (AKA: COW9) that allows our end-users to choose content based on their interest at a given time.

AltaVista honors the right not to be included in our index

AltaVista respects the right to privacy of web sites to not be included in our web index and utilizes the Robot Exclusion Standard to allow webmasters the option to ensure that their information is not made available through the search engine. In addition, individuals who do not want newsgroups posting included in our index can simply include a " X-no-archive: yes" in the headers of their message.

AltaVista is Anonymous

Compaq Computer Corporation and our ad partner, DoubleClick, does not know the name, email address, phone number, or home address of anybody who visits AltaVista. All users who receive an ad targeted by DoubleClick's Dart technology remain completely anonymous. Since we do not have any information concerning names or addresses, we do not sell or rent any such information to third parties. Because of our efforts to keep users anonymous, the information DoubleClick has is useful only across the DoubleClick Network, and only in the context of ad selection.

AltaVista Users can Opt Out of "Cookies"

Cookies are small text files a Web site can use (thousands of sites are currently using them) to recognize a repeat visitor to its site. Cookies are not programs that come onto a user's system and damage files. Compaq Computer Corporation, ad sales partners for AltaVista, DoubleClick, utilizes cookies that contain no information about you - only a unique number that has no meaning whatsoever outside of the DoubleClick Network. DoubleClick uses this number to track ad exposure to assure a user is not bombarded with the same ad over and over again.

While we believe that cookies enhance the Web experience for the user by limiting the repetitiveness of advertising, they are not essential. If you do not want the frequency of ad exposure controlled, there is a simple procedure that allows the user to deny or accept this feature. To find out more about this procedure, please click here.

While some third parties offer programs to manually delete your cookies, DoubleClick goes one step further by offering you a "blank" or "opt-out cookie" to prevent any data from being stored. If you would like more information on how to opt-out, please click here.

Compaq Computer Corporation's ad sales partner, DoubleClick, makes available all information practices at, including in-depth descriptions of targeting capabilities, this stance on privacy, and full disclosure on the use of cookies (above). In addition, we provide all users with the option to contact them at with any further questions or concerns.

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