These internet cookies are tiny data files stored on user’s computer by the web browser to remember someone’s login info, credit card information or shopping proclivities.
First-party cookies are those used by the website within its own domain to remember important information – like Gmail storing your username and password.
Third-party cookies, or tracking cookies, are those that follow a user’s browsing history to recommend things such as banner advertisements on various websites.
As data breaches in recent years have exposed weaknesses in the storage and transfer of personal data, lawmakers in the United States and Europe have expressed concern over the tracking of users online.
In 2018, the European Union enacted the General Data Privacy Regulation – a sweeping data privacy law requiring websites using cookies to obtain user consent beforehand – hence those pop-up requests when you visit a website.
Several internet browsers, including Google’s Chrome, Apple’s Safari and Mozilla’s Firefox, have made moves in recent years to block third-party cookies from their browsers.