Enable Cookies

Learn how to enable internet cookies across different types of browser and various devices.

How to Enable Cookies

Cookies can be very useful to everyday browsing. They can help speed up the loading of a web page, ensure your preferences are remembered and generally help control what is presented to you. Many site will not function correctly without having cookies enabled on your browser. The following pages will allow you to take control of your browser settings and either enable or disable cookies for your type of browser. Simply select the correct browser type and then ensure you follow the instructions that relate to your specific browser version.


Should I enable or disable cookies?

Now before the paranoia kicks in, let’s be clear about something – they don’t care about you specifically. Sorry, but you’re just not that important. The sheer volume of data alone makes tracking any one individual a difficult task. What’s typically interesting is aggregate data: the data that says things like X percent of the visitors to this website also visit that website. That’s not to say that cookies can’t be misused; it’s just that it’s typically a lot more work than it’s worth. You can see what cookies you have and what they contain, but it’s typically not particularly interesting. In Internet Explorer, hit Tools, Internet Options, the General tab, underneath Temporary Internet Files click on Settings. In the resulting dialog click on View Files. That’ll bring up a list of all all temporary files, including cookies. I typically click on the Name column header to sort by name, and then scroll down to the point where the name begins with “Cookie:”. There they are. Another approach is to download a Cookie viewing program to make things a little more readable. I’ve used Cookie Viewer from KarenWare. In either case, if you look at the contents of a cookie, they’re typically very obscure. It’s common practice to simply store a unique identifier of some sort and not much more. That ID usually makes sense only to the website that put it there, and effectively makes the cookie useless to others even if they could get at it.

You can control how Internet Explorer handles cookies to reduce any concerns you may still have. On the Privacy tab of Internet Options you can set the level of cookie handling IE should follow. That includes not only allowing, or blocking, all cookies, but also controlling third-party cookies resulting from things like embedded ads I mentioned earlier. And you can define an explicit list of sites from which you’re prepared to accept cookies.


More to come…

What risks am I introducing be allowing coookies

Can I activate/deactivate only certain cookies

How do I switch on Cookie warnings and prevent dangerous cookies

How can I see what cookies are loaded on my browser