Cookies don’t just track your web activity – they can also help hackers get your personal information and passwords.

What Are Computer Cookies?

Cookies are small files that are created by websites that you visit. They are designed to remember you. They save browsing information. That way, sites can keep you signed in. You don’t have to accept cookies on websites, but they aren’t bad for you.

What Are Cookies Used For?

They are used for recognizing your computer device. Also, to tailor your website experience, track your online activity, analyze the use of websites and enhance usability. They record browsing history, so it’s easier for you to sign in the next time. Also, they’re used to store credit card info and usually can save you lots of time logging in, mainly because they store your password. That way, only the password can read it.

Why Do Hackers Want Your Cookies?

Cookies are stealing means that hackers are trying to gain access to your personal information through your device. Hackers can use cookies to spy on your online activity and steal your personal information, which they use for phishing. If they steal your cookies, then they can easily access your account without login. In addition, they can be used to compromise your email or social media.

How Do Hackers Steal Your Cookies?

If hackers have access to a victim’s session ID and mimic that person, they can easily steal that session cookie. They could do it through your device, your network, or from an insecure web server. More advanced ways are through public WiFi. It’s pretty easy for them if they use Firesheep- it allows them to detect and copy cookies sent over WiFi. They click on the copied cookie, and they can log into anyone’s account. Most browsers securely store cookies. Everybody should use anti-malware protection.

What can I do to protect my cookies?

If you worry about your safety, you don’t have to accept cookies at all! It won’t be very pleasant to re-enter personal information and passwords every time, but it’s much safer. Deleting cookies works the same way. Experts recommend that everybody should clear their cookies every 7-14 days. After that, if the site isn’t trusted, never enter your credit card information. You also shouldn’t share cookies with other apps.

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