Cookies are data that a website caches on your computer when you visit the site. These cookies come from any websites such as Google, Facebook, Amazon, etc. It contains information such as Account name, language, page settings, e-mail address, etc.
The cookies are meant to facilitate surfing the internet. For e.g, the cookies save username and password in an encrypted format. The presence of cookies helps you to navigate through the website pages without any distractions. If the cookies were not there, you have to enter username and password every time you visit a new page inside the website. Similarly, the cookies also save your browser habits which help the website owner to display contents and ads based on the visitor’s interest.
- Session cookies are especially helpful and indispensable while surfing. You save your login data, so you do not have to re-login after a few seconds on password-protected websites.
- Here, the focus is on security, which is why cookies are automatically used for online banking, for example.
- The connection is stored in a cookie the entire session until you close the website or log out. Then the cookie will be removed automatically.
- Among the unpopular cookies include the “tracking cookies” that give you personalized advertising and permanently stored. They are often called “persistent cookies”.
- If you open a website with banners, they also place a cookie. This will spy on your surfing behavior in order to show you targeted “best possible” advertising.
- The real goal, however, is website optimization. For example, you can get personalized product suggestions from Amazon through cookies
Type of Cookies
There are mainly 3 types of cookies
When you log into secure websites (websites that uses username and password to log in), the cookies save username and passwords. The information inside the cookies is used to continue the session without entering username and password multiple times. Banking websites also use session cookies.
These cookies track your online preferences. These cookies save your website preferences, language preference, bookmarks, menu preferences, etc. These cookies are shared between different website. The information in the cookies allows the websites to display content according to user preference. These cookies are stored inside the hard disk and stay there for a long period.
These are cookies that collect data based on online behavior. They track user interest, age, location, search trends, etc. The information inside these cookies is used by advertisers to display ads that are relevant rather than showing random ads. These third-party cookies can be blocked from browsers if you find it an invasion of privacy.
Some Cookies are good and some are bad. Cookies from most of the websites are harmless and make your browsing experience more effective as the webpage is able to display relevant information. But when you get cookies from suspicious websites or unknown website, block it.
If you want to customize the behavior of your browser against the cookies, you will find the appropriate instructions for Firefox, Chrome, Safari, Opera and for Internet Explorer.