What is a cookie?

A cookie is a text file harmless that is stored in your browser when you visit almost any web page. It’s purpose is to allow the site to remember your visit when you navigate to that page again. Although many people do not know cookies have been used for over 20 years, when the first browsers for the World Wide Web appeared.

What a cookie is not

It is not a virus or a Trojan, or a worm, or spam, or spyware, and it doesn’t open pop-up windows.

What information does a cookie store?

The cookiesusually do not store sensitive information about you such as credit cards or bank details, pictures, your DNI or personal information, etc. The data stored is of a technical nature; personal preferences, customizing contents, etc.

The web server does not associate you as a person; it does so via your web browser. In fact, if you browse usually with Internet Explorer and try to browse the web itself with Firefox or Chrome you will see that the web does not realize that you are the same person because in reality your browser is being associated, not the person.

What type of cookies exist?

  • Technical Cookies: are the most basic and they allow, among other things, servers to know when you are browsing a human or an automated application, when browsing an anonymous user and one registered, basic tasks for the operation of any dynamic web.
  • Analytic Cookies: collect information on the type of navigation that is being done, the sections that are most used, products consulted, time of use, language, etc.
  • Advertising Cookies: show advertisements based on your navigation, country of origin, language, etc.

What are proprietary cookies and what are third party cookies?

Proprietary cookies are those generated by the website you are visiting and third party cookies are those generated by services or external suppliers such as Facebook, Twitter, Google, etc.

What happens if I disable cookies?

To understand the scope of what may happen if you disable cookies here are a few examples: :

  • You will not be able to share content on such webs as Facebook, Twitter or any other social network.
  • The web site will not be able to adapt the content to your personal preferences, as usually happens in the online stores.
  • You will not be able to access the personal area of this web, for example. My account , My profile o My orders.
  • Online stores: You will not be able to make purchases online, will have to be over the telephone or by visiting the physical store if it is available.
  • It will not be possible to customize your geographic preferences or time zone, currency or language.
  • The web site will not be able to perform web analytics on visitors and traffic on the web, making 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, assess or rate content. The web cannot know whether you are a human or an automated application that publishes spam.
  • Sectorial advertising cannot be displayed.
  • All the social networks use cookies; if you disable them you will not be able to use any social network.

Can cookies be deleted?

Yes. Not only deleted, the can also be blocked; globally or particular to a specific domain.

To delete cookies from a web site you must go to the settings of your browser and there you can find the associated domain in question and proceed to its elimination.