What is a cookie?
A cookie is a text file that is stored harmless in your browser when you visit almost any website. The usefulness of a cookie lies in enabling the website to remember your visit next time you browse that page. Although not many people know this, cookies have been used for about 20 years now, since a browser for the World Wide Web was used for the first time.
What IS NOT a cookie?
It is not a virus, a Trojan, a worm, spam, spyware or a pop-up window.
What information does a cookie store?
Cookies do not usually store sensitive information about you, such as credit card details or bank account information, photographs, your identity card or personal information, etc. The data stored are technical, personal preferences, personalised content, etc.
The web server does not identify you as a person. In fact, if you usually browse with Internet Explorer and try browsing the same website with Firefox or Chrome, you will see that the website does not realise that you are the same person because it really is partnering with the browser, not with the person.
What kind of cookies are there?
Technical Cookies: these are the most basic type and, among other things, can recognise when you are navigating as a human or as an automated application, when it is an anonymous user or a registered user that navigates, and allow the basic tasks for the operation of any dynamic web.
Analytical Cookies: they collect information on the type of navigation that is being performed, the most used sections, reference numbers, time slot of use, language, etc.
Advertising Cookies: they show advertising based on your browsing, your country of origin, language, etc.
What are own and third-party cookies?
Own cookies are those cookies which are generated by the page you are visiting while third-party cookies are those cookies generated by internal or external providers such as Facebook, Twitter, Google, etc.
What happens if I disable cookies?
To understand the extent of what may happen if you were to disable cookies, here is a list of illustrative examples. If you disabled cookies…
…you would not be able to share content from that page on Facebook, Twitter or any other social network;
…the website would not adapt content to your personal preferences, as it often happens in online stores;
…you would not be able to access your personal area of the web, such as My Account, My profile or My orders;
…you would not be able to shop online as it would be impossible to make purchases online. The only option left would be to call or visit the actual store on site;
…it would not be possible to customise your geographic preferences as time zone, currency or language;
…the website would not perform web analytics on visitors and web traffic, making it difficult to be competitive anywhere;
…you would not be able to blog, upload photos, post comments, value or rate content. The website would not be able to know whether you are a human or an automated application that publishes spam;
Can I delete cookies?
Yes, you can. Not only can you remove them, but you can also block them, in general or at a particular level, to a specific domain.
To remove cookies from a website, you should go to your browser settings and there you will find the associated domain in question and proceed to its elimination.
Cookie settings for the most popular browsers.
Here’s how to access cookie settings in the Google Chrome browser. Note: these steps may vary depending on the browser version.
1. Go to Settings or Preferences using the ‘File’ menu or by clicking on the icon customisation that appears on the right top.
2. You will see different sections; click on the ‘Show Advanced Options’ option.
3. Go to ‘Privacy Settings’ content.
4. Select all cookies and site data.
5. A list of all cookies ordered by domain will then appear. To make it easier to find the cookies of a specific domain, partially or fully, enter the address in the search field cookies.
6. After implementing this filter, one or more lines with the requested web cookies will appear on the screen.
7. Now just select it and press X to proceed with removal.
To access cookie settings in the Internet Explorer browser, follow these steps. Note: these steps may vary depending on the version of the browser.
1. Go to Tools, Internet Options
2. Click on Privacy.
3. Move the slider to adjust the level of privacy you want.
To access cookie settings in the Mozilla Firefox browser, follow these steps. Note: these steps may vary depending on the version of the browser.
1. Go to Options or Preferences for your operating system.
2. Click on Privacy.
3. In History, select Use custom settings for history.
4. Now you will see the Accept Cookies option. You can enable or disable your preference.
To access cookie settings in the Safari browser, follow these steps. Note: these steps may vary depending on the version of the browser.
1. Go to Settings, then Privacy.
2. Here you can see the Block cookies option to fit the type of blockage you want to perform.
To access cookie settings in the Safari browser for iOS, follow these steps. Note: these steps may vary depending on the version of the browser
1. Go to Settings, then Safari.
2. Go to Privacy and Security, select Block cookies to fit the type of blockage you want to perform.
To access cookie settings in the browser for Android devices, follow these steps. Note: these steps may vary depending on the version of the browser.
1. Run the browser and press Menu, then go to the Settings button.
2. Go to Security and Privacy. In the Accept cookies option, select or clear the check box.
To access cookie settings in the browser for Windows Phone devices, follow these steps. Note: these steps may vary depending on the version of the browser.
1. Open Internet Explorer. Go to More and then go to Settings.
2. Now you can enable or disable the Allow cookies option.