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What is a cookie?

A cookie is an inoffensive text file that is stored on your browser when you visit almost any web page. The utility of a cookie is that a web page is able to remember your visit when you browse that same page again. Although many people don't know it, cookies have been in use for 20 years, when the first browsers for the World Wide Web appeared.

And a cookie is NOT...?

A cookie is not a virus, a Trojan, a worm, spam or spyware, and it does not open pop-up windows.

What information does a cookie store?

Cookies do not usually store sensitive information about you, such as credit card numbers, bank information, photographs, your National Identity Document number, personal information, etc. The stored data are technical in nature and refer to personal preferences, content personalisation, etc.

The web server does not associate it with you as a person, but rather with your web browser. In fact, if you regularly browse using Internet Explorer and then try to browse the same web page using Firefox or Chrome, you'll see that the web page does not realise that you are the same person, because the association is actually with the browser, not the person.

What types of cookies exist?

Technical cookies: They are the most elemental, and among other things, they allow knowing when a person or an automated application is browsing and when an anonymous user or a registered user is browsing, which are basic tasks for the operation of any dynamic web page.

Analysis cookies: They compile information about how you are browsing, about the sections you use the most, about consulted products, about the time frame of use, about the language, etc.

Advertising cookies: They show advertising according to your browsing, your country of origin, your language, etc.

What are first- and third-party cookies?

First-party cookies are those generated by the web page you are visiting, and third-party cookies are those generated by external services or suppliers such as Facebook, Twitter, Google, etc.

What happens if I deactivate cookies?

So that you can understand the scope of what happens by deactivating cookies, we'll show you some examples:

You won't be able to share the content of a particular web page on Facebook, Twitter or any other social network.

A particular web page won't be able to adapt its content to your personal preferences, which is what usually happens at on-line stores.

You won't be able to access the personal area of a particular web page, such as 'My account', 'My profile' or 'My orders'.