What is a cookie?
A cookie is a harmless file kept in the bowser when you visit any web. Cookies make webs able to remember your previous visits. Many people don’t know this, but cookies have been used for 20 years now, when the first World Wide Web browsers appeared for the first time.
What is not a cookie?
It is not a virus, it is not a trojan, not a worm, not spam or spyware, and it does not open pop-up windows.
What information does a cookie keep?
Cookies do not usually keep sensitive information about you, such as credit card or bank numbers, pictures, ID numbers or personal info. All the data saved are technical, personal preferences, content personalization, etc.
The web server will not associate you as a person, it will associate your web browser. In fact, if you often use Internet Explorer and visit the same web with Firefox or Chrome, you will realice that the web does not recognize you as a user, because it associated the browser you were using previously.
What kind of cookies are there?
- Technical Cookies: This are the most elementary ones and allow, among other things, to distinguish if a human or an automated app is browsing, to know if an anonymous or a registered user is browsing, and basic functioning tasks for dynamic webs.
- Analysis Cookies: These cookies gather information about the kind of browsing, the most used sections, the products visited, time of the day, language, etc.
- Advertising Cookies: This cookies show ads depending on your preferences, your country, language, etc.
What are your own cookies and third-party cookies?
Your own cookies are those generated by the page you are visiting, and third-party cookies are those generated by external services or providers such as Facebook, Twitter, Google, etc.
What happens if I turn off the cookies?
To understand what happens if we have the cookies off, here we show you some examples:
- You will not be able to share content from that website on Facebook, Twitter or any other social network.
- The website will not be able to adapt the contents to your personal preferences, as usually happens in online stores.
- You will not be able to access your personal area in that website, such as My account, My profile or My orders.
- Online stores: You will not be able to make purchases online, they will have to be telephone or visit the physical store if you have one in your area.
- It will not be possible to customize your geographical preferences such as time zone, currency or language.
- The website will not be able to perform web analytics on visitors and traffic on the web, which will make it difficult for the web to be competitive.
- You will not be able to write on the blog, you will not be able to upload photos, post comments, rate or rate content. The web will also not know if you are a human or an automated application that publishes spam.
- You will not be showed sectorized advertising, which will reduce the advertising revenues of the web.
Can cookies be deleted?
Yes. Not just deleted, but also blocked, in general or particularly for a specific domain.
To remove the cookies from a website you must go to the configuration of your browser, and there you can search for those associated with the domain in question and proceed to its elimination.
Setting up cookies for the most popular browsers
Here’s how to access a specific cookie from Chrome. Note: These steps may vary depending on your browser version:
- Go to Settings or Preferences using the File menu or by clicking the customization icon at the top right.
- You will see different sections, click Show Advanced Options.
- Go to Privacy, Content Settings.
- Select All Cookies and Site Data.
- A list with all the cookies, sorted by domain, will appear. To make it easier for you to find the cookies for a particular domain, enter the whole or partial address in the Search Field.
- After completing the filter, one or more lines with the cookies of the requested web will appear on the screen. Now you just have to select it and press X to proceed to its elimination.
To access the cookies configuration of Internet Explorer, follow these steps (they may vary depending on the version of the browser):
- Go to Tools, Internet Options.
- Click on Privacy.
- Move the slider until you adjust the level of privacy you want.
To access Firefox cookie settings, follow these steps (they may vary depending on your browser version):
- Go to Options or Preferences depending on your operating system.
- Click on Privacy.
- In History, choose Use Custom Settings for History.
- You will now see the Accept Cookies option, you can activate or deactivate it according to your preferences.
To access the cookies configuration of Safari for OSX follow these steps (they may vary depending on the version of the browser):
- Go to Preferences, then Privacy.
- Here you will see the Block Cookies option to adjust the block type that you want to perform.
To access the settings of Safari for iOS, follow these steps (they may vary depending on the browser version):
- Go to Settings, then Safari.
- Go to Privacy and Security, you will see the Block Cookies option to adjust the type of block you want to perform.
To access the cookie settings for Android devices follow these steps (they may vary depending on your browser version):
- Run the browser and open the Menu, then Settings.
- Go to Security and Privacy, you will see the Accept Cookies option to enable or disable the check box.
To access the cookies 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 box.