A cookie is a small text file that is stored in your browser when you visit almost any website. Its purpose is to enable the website to remember your visit when you browse that page again. Cookies usually store technical information, personal preferences, content customization, usage statistics, links to social networks, access to user accounts, etc. The objective of the cookie is to adapt the website’s content to your profile and needs. Without cookies, the services offered by any website would be significantly impaired.
What is a cookie?
A cookie is a harmless text file that is stored in your browser when you visit almost any website. The cookie’s purpose is to enable the website to remember your visit when you browse that page again. Although many people may not know this, cookies have been used for 20 years since the first web browsers for the World Wide Web appeared.
What is NOT a cookie?
A cookie is not a virus, trojan, worm, spam, spyware, or pop-up window opener.
What information does a cookie store?
Cookies usually do not store sensitive information about you, such as credit card or banking data, photographs, your ID card, or personal information. The data they store is technical in nature, personal preferences, content customization, etc.
The web server does not associate you as a person but rather your web browser. In fact, if you regularly browse with Internet Explorer and try to browse the same website with Firefox or Chrome, you will see that the website does not recognize you as the same person because it associates with the browser, not the individual.
What types of cookies exist?
Technical cookies: These are the most basic cookies that allow, among other things, determining whether a human or an automated application is browsing, whether an anonymous or registered user is browsing, and other basic tasks for the functioning of any dynamic website.
Analytical cookies: They collect information about the type of browsing you are doing, the sections you use the most, products you have viewed, time of use, language, etc.
Advertising cookies: They display advertisements based on your browsing, country of origin, language, etc.
What are first-party and third-party cookies?
First-party cookies are generated by the website you are visiting, while third-party cookies are generated by external services or providers such as Facebook, Twitter, Google, etc.
Types of cookies according to their purpose:
Based on the purpose for which the data obtained through cookies is processed, we can distinguish between:
Technical cookies: These allow users to navigate through a website, platform, or application and use the different options or services available, such as controlling traffic and data communication, identifying the session, accessing restricted access sections, remembering the items that make up an order, completing the purchasing process of an order, making a request for registration or participation in an event, using security elements during browsing, storing content for the dissemination of videos or sound, or sharing content through social networks.
Personalization cookies: These allow users to access the service with predefined general characteristics based on a series of criteria on the user’s terminal, such as language, type of browser through which they access the service, regional configuration from which they access the service, etc.
Analytical cookies: These allow the party responsible for them to track and analyze the behavior of users of the websites they are linked to. The information collected through this type of cookie is used to measure the activity of the websites, applications, or platforms and to create navigation profiles of the users of these sites, applications, and platforms, in order to make improvements based on the analysis of the usage data by users of the service. Regarding the processing of data collected through analytical cookies, the working group of Article 29 has stated that, despite the need to obtain informed consent for their use, they are unlikely to represent a privacy risk to users
What happens if I disable cookies?
To understand the extent of disabling cookies, we’ll show you some examples:
- You won’t be able to share content from that website on Facebook, Twitter, or any other social network.
- The website won’t be able to tailor content to your personal preferences, as often happens on online stores.
- You won’t be able to access the personal area of that website, such as My Account, My Profile, or My Orders.
- Online shopping: You won’t be able to make online purchases; they would have to be done over the phone or by visiting the physical store if available.
- You won’t be able to customize your geographical preferences, such as time zone, currency, or language.
- The website won’t be able to perform web analytics on visitors and web traffic, making it difficult for the website to be competitive.
- You won’t be able to write on the blog, upload photos, post comments, rate or review content. The website also won’t be able to determine if you are a human or an automated application that publishes spam.
- Targeted advertising won’t be displayed, reducing the website’s advertising revenue.
Can cookies be deleted?
Yes. Not only can they be deleted, but they can also be blocked, either in general or for a specific domain.
To delete cookies from a website, you need to go to your browser’s settings and look for the cookies associated with that particular domain to proceed with their deletion.
Cookie settings for the most popular browsers:
Here are the steps to access a specific cookie in the Chrome browser. Note: these steps may vary depending on the browser version:
- Go to Settings or Preferences using the File menu or by clicking the customization icon in the upper right corner.
- You’ll see different sections, click on the option “Advanced settings.”
- Go to Privacy, Content Settings.
- Select “All cookies and site data.”
- You’ll see a list of all cookies organized by domain. To make it easier to find the cookies for a specific domain, enter a partial or full address in the search field.
- After applying this filter, one or more lines with the requested website’s cookies will appear on the screen. Now, you just have to select them and click the “X” to delete them.
For cookie settings in the Internet Explorer browser, follow these steps (they may vary depending on the browser version):
- Go to Tools, Internet Options.
- Click on Privacy.
- Move the slider to adjust the desired privacy level.
For cookie settings in the Firefox browser, follow these steps (they may vary depending on the browser version):
- Go to Options or Preferences, depending on your operating system.
- Click on Privacy.
- Under History, choose “Use custom settings for history.”
- You’ll see the option to Accept cookies; you can enable or disable it according to your preferences.
For cookie settings in the Safari browser for macOS, follow these steps (they may vary depending on the browser version):
- Go to Preferences, then Privacy.
- Here, you’ll see the option to Block cookies to adjust the type of blocking you want to apply.
For cookie settings in the Safari browser for iOS, follow these steps (they may vary depending on the browser version):
- Go to Settings, then Safari.
- Go to Privacy and Security, and you’ll see the option to Block cookies to adjust the type of blocking you want to apply.
For cookie settings in the browser for Android devices, follow these steps (they may vary depending on the browser version):
- Open the browser and tap the Menu key, then Settings.
- Go to Security and Privacy, and you’ll see the option to Accept cookies to enable or disable the checkbox.
For cookie settings in the browser for Windows Phone devices, follow these steps (they may vary depending on the browser version):
- Open Internet Explorer, then More, then Settings.
- You can now enable or disable the Allow cookies checkbox.
Cookies used on this website:
This website uses the following first-party cookies:
- Session cookies: They ensure that users who write comments on the blog are humans and not automated applications, helping to combat spam.
This website uses the following third-party cookies:
- _gid: Registers a unique identification that is used to generate statistical data on how the visitor uses the website.
You can exercise your right to disable or delete cookies from this website at any time. The process varies depending on the browser you are using. Here’s a quick guide for the most popular browsers.
The user can exercise their rights of access, rectification, cancellation, and opposition to their data by writing a letter accompanied by a copy of an official document proving their identity and sending it to SPH via email at email@example.com, indicating the right they wish to exercise in the subject line.