General definition of a cookie
A cookie, also known as an HTTP cookie, web cookie, or browser cookie, is used for an origin website to send information to a user’s browser and for the browser to return the information to the origin site. The information can be used for authentication, identification of a user session, user’s preferences, shopping cart contents, or anything else that can be accomplished through storing text data on the user’s computer.
How to block and avoid cookies
- In your browser go to the Tools menu and select Internet Options > Privacy > Advanced.
- Click Override automatic cookie handling.
- Specify how you want Internet Explorer to handle cookies from first-party Web sites and third-party Web sites (a Web site other than the one you are currently viewing).
- To always allow cookies to be saved on your computer, click Accept.
- To never allow cookies to be saved on your computer, click Block.
- To be asked whether or not you want to allow a cookie to be saved on your computer, click Prompt.
- To always allow session cookies (cookies that will be deleted from your computer when you close Internet Explorer) to be saved on your computer, click Always allow session cookies.
- Click the wrench icon on the browser toolbar.
- Select Options (Preferences on Mac and Linux; Settings on a Chromebook).
- Click the Under the Hood tab.
- Click Content settings in the “Privacy” section.
- Click the Cookies tab in the Content Settings dialog that appears:
- Click All cookies and site data to open the Cookies and Other Data dialog.
- To delete all cookies, click Remove all at the bottom of the dialog. To delete a specific cookie, select the site that issued the cookie, then the cookie, and click Remove.
Block cookies by default
- Block all cookies: Select “Block sites from setting any data”. Keep in mind that selecting this setting will prevent most sites that require you to sign in from working. You’ll see an icon in the address bar whenever a cookie has been blocked.
- Block only third-party cookies: Select the “Ignore exceptions and block third-party cookies from being set” checkbox. Even if you’ve added a site to the Exceptions list and have chosen to allow its cookies, the site’s third-party cookies won’t be accepted if this checkbox is selected.
Allow cookies by default
- Make sure “Allow local data to be set” is selected to allow both first-party and third-party cookies. If you only want to accept first-party cookies, select the “Block all third-party cookies without exception” checkbox.
Make exceptions for cookies from specific websites or domains
- To control how cookies should be handled for a few specific sites or domains, click Manage exceptions. To add a rule in the Cookie and Site Data Exceptions dialog that appears, follow these steps:
- Click the “Add a new exception pattern” field and enter the domain name for which you want to create an exception.
- To create exceptions for an entire domain, insert [*.] before the domain name (e.g. [*.]google.com).
- You can also specify an IP address, an IPv6 address, or a non-http URL.
- Use the menu to choose whether the site can set cookies. If you select Session only, its cookies are deleted every time you close your browser.
- You can also edit or remove exceptions using this dialog.
- Choose Safari -> Preferences.
- Click the Security toolbar button.
- Safari displays preference settings.
- Choose how to accept cookies via these radio button choices:
- Never: Block cookies entirely.
- Always: Accept all cookies.
- Only from Sites, You Navigate To The default option, which allows sites to work correctly without allowing a barrage of illicit cookies.
- To view the cookies currently on your system, click the Show Cookies button.
- The site that used that cookie will forget any information that it stored in the file, meaning that you may have to take care of things manually, like providing a password on the site that used to be read automatically from the cookie.
- Click the Close button to save your changes.