What is a cookie?
A cookie is a harmless text file that is stored in your browser when you visit almost any web page. The usefulness of the cookie is that the web is able to remember your visit when you return to browse that page. Although many people do not know it, cookies have been used for 20 years, when the first browsers appeared for the World Wide Web.
What is not a cookie?
It's not a virus, a Trojan, a worm, spam, spyware, or pop-up windows.
What information does a cookie store?
Cookies do not usually store sensitive information about you, such as credit cards or bank details, photographs, your ID or personal information, etc. The data they store are of a technical nature, personal preferences, personalisation of contents, etc.
The web server does not associate you as a person but with your web browser. In fact, if you surf regularly with Internet Explorer and try surfing the same web with Firefox or Chrome you will see that the web does not realize that you are the same person because you are actually associating the browser, not the person.
What kind of cookies are there?
- Technical Cookies: These are the most basic and allow, among other things, to know when a human is surfing or an automated application, when an anonymous user and a registered one are surfing, basic tasks for the operation of any dynamic web.
- Analysis Cookies: Collect information about the type of navigation you are doing, the sections you use the most, products consulted, time zone of use, language, and so on.
- Advertising Cookies: Display advertising based on your navigation, country of origin, language, etc..
What are own and third party cookies?
Your own cookies are those generated by the page you are visiting and those of third parties are those generated by external services or providers such as Facebook, Twitter, Google, etc..
What happens if I turn off cookies?
To help you understand the extent to which you may be able to disable cookies, here are a few examples:
- You are not able to share content from that website on Facebook, Twitter or any other social network.
- The website will not be able to adapt the content to your personal preferences, as is often the case in online shops.
- You will not be able to access the personal area of that website, such as My Account, or My Profile or My Orders.
- Online stores: You will not be able to shop online, you will have to make a call or visit the physical store, if any.
- It will not be possible to customize your geographic preferences such as time zone, currency, or language.
- The website will not be able to perform web analytics on visitors and traffic to the website, which will make it difficult for the website to be competitive.
- You will not be able to write in the blog, you will not be able to upload photos, publish comments, rate or rate contents. The website will also not be able to tell if you are a human or an automated application that publishes spam.
- It will not be possible to show sectorized advertising, which will reduce the advertising income of the web.
Can I delete cookies?
Yes, not only delete, but also block, in a general or particular way for a specific domain.
To delete cookies from a website you must go to the settings of your browser and there you can search for those associated with the domain in question and proceed to delete them.
Setting Cookies for Most Popular Browsers
Here's how to access a specific cookie from your Chrome browser. Note: These steps may vary depending on the browser version:
- Go to Settings or Preferences via the File menu or by clicking the customization at the top right icon.
- You will see different sections, click on the option Show Advanced Options.
- Go to Privacy, Content Settings.
- Select All Cookies and Site Data.
- A list with all cookies sorted by domain will appear. To make it easier for you to find the cookies for a given domain, enter part or all of the address in the Search for cookies field.
- After carrying out this filter, one or more lines with the cookies of the requested website will appear on the screen. Now all you have to do is select it and press the X to delete it.
To access your Internet Explorer browser's cookie settings follow these steps (they may vary depending on your browser's version):
- Go to Tools, Internet Options.
- Click on Privacy.
- Move the slider to adjust the privacy level you want.
To access your Firefox browser's cookie settings follow these steps (they may vary depending on your browser's version):
- Go to Options or Preferences according to your operating system.
- Click on Privacy.
- Under History, choose Use custom settings for history.
- You will now see Accept cookies option, you can enable or disable it to better fit your preferences.
To access your Safari browser's cookie settings for OSX follow these steps (they may vary depending on your browser version):
- Go to Preferences, then Privacy.
- In this place you will see the option Block cookies to adjust the type of block you want to make.
To access your Safari browser's cookie settings for iOS follow these steps (they may vary depending on your browser version):
- Go to Settings, then Safari.
- Under Privacy and Security, you'll see the Block Cookies option to adjust the type of block you want to perform.
To access your browser's cookie settings for Android devices follow these steps (they may vary depending on your browser version):
- Run the browser and press the Menu key, then Settings.
- Go to Security and Privacy, you'll see the Accept cookies option to enable or disable the check box.
To access your browser's cookie settings for Windows Phone devices follow these steps (they may vary depending on your browser version):
- Open Internet Explorer, then More, then Settings.
- You can now enable or disable the Allow cookies check box.