This is a tiny little how-to guide that will show you how to handle cookies in a way that preserves your privacy, but lets you browse the web conveniently, and requires minimal effort on your part.
Cookies are tiny files created on your computer when you visit certain websites. Most often they are used to enable websites remember who you are. They are also occasionally used by advertising services to track your behavior across multiple sites [Read more
For people who are very concerned with their privacy, their are tools that act as watchdogs over all cookies (e.g. CookieCop
), and you can configure browsers to block all cookies except those you approve, and get an alert any time a new website tries to add a cookie (firefox extensions
The main problem with these utilities and addons is simply that they can require too much trouble on your part, approving and rejecting cookies every time you visit a site. And it may seem like a waste to run one of these tools constantly.
Plus, it's increasingly the case that a site simply requires cookies be enabled in order for you to navigate around the site, so blocking cookies completely while you are on a site is just not going to be an option sometimes.
I've found that the most sensible approach is to use a cleaning utility which allows you to keep a whitelist of cookies you want preserved, and then simply delete all non-whitelisted cookies occasionally.