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Posted: 11/24/2001 1:51:11 PM EDT
I visited my bro's house for thanksgiving, taking my computer with me. After seeing various computer security discussions on this site, I asked him to search my machine for "cookies." My machine was loaded with those little rat-finks. I believe he "searched" my machine under the word "cookie" to locate them. Could we have a word from our Computer People on this board for us laymen on how to rid ourselves of cookies, and other bad stuff? "Thank you for your support." ------ "I did it all for the nookie, the nookie, the nookie, And you can take this Cookie and s..."
Link Posted: 11/24/2001 1:54:55 PM EDT
[url]http://www.cookiecentral.com/software.phtml?type=pc[/url] - CD
Link Posted: 11/24/2001 2:01:36 PM EDT
Cookies in and of themselves are not bad. In fact by logging into this site most likely a cookie was set on your computer. Cookies allow you to save your preferences for websites and allow you to go from one page to another without having to log in. The only "bad" thing a cookie can do, is track when and where you go on a specific website, but each site has it's own cookie, so it's not as if someone else can read the cookies on your computer and see where you have been. Unless of course you download "free" programs from the internet that some puts a virus in which will read your cookies and send the information back to the person who wrote the virus.
Link Posted: 11/24/2001 2:21:05 PM EDT
Cookies are a small text file that is placed in a specific folder on your hard drive. One of many ways to find them if you're using Internet Explorer software or AOL: START>SETTINGS>CONTROL PANEL>INTERNET OPTIONS Another way if you've got an Internet Explorer window open: TOOLS>INTERNET OPTIONS At this point it helps to clear your cache or your 285 cookies will be intermixed with another 6900 or so cache files. Plus clearing the cache does help restore your web browsing back to full speed. So click: DELETE FILES>OK Again, this just deletes the copies of old web pages that you've visited in the past. For example, if you looked up a story about the Groundhog on Groundhog Day, that page is saved on your computer. Next, click SETTINGS Then click VIEW FILES If you've cleared your cache already, you should only see the cookies at this time. Here's what my AR15.com cookie looks like (I altered a couple of the characters) [b]siteUsername Robbie www.ar15.com/ 0 3763382720 291474180 39560129792 29455673 * lastBoard1Visit 12%2e25%2e2001+5^2A45%3A11+PM www.ar15.com/ 0 614654596 295229099 4129249792 29455573 * [/b] As you can see, some of it is readable...such as the user name, the last visit (which I changed to Christmas), but the other numbers in there are only cross-referenced with AR15.com's computers. Cookies basically have three uses: [b]Convenience[/b] - If you go visit a web site where you can login such as Excite.com the first time you enter in your user ID and your password. The web site then saves a cookie on your computer and puts in a code number such as "1234937854." But the 2nd time, you don't have to because the web site looks for it's own cookie then finds the number 1234937854, then looks up it's own files and sees that number is you, so it logs you in without asking for your password. If you delete that Excite.com cookie, then the next time you go to the site, it won't find the cookie, so it will ask you to log in again and save another cookie. [b]Security[/b] - Let's say you log on to your online broker or bank. As your computer and the broker's computer is calculating their security codes, the online broker will place a "non-persistent" cookie in the memory of your computer that is set to expire in say 2-5 minutes. This way if somebody tries to tap into your same data stream to try to pass themself off as you, but it won't work since they won't have that cookie in memory and their computer will be rejected as an imposter. Also, after the 2-5 minute expiration, the web site will redo all security codes with your computer. [b]Marketing[/b] - Let's say you go to a web site and buy a Tom Clancy book. The web site will put a cookie on your computer with it's special one-time code of "aa349d32". The next time you visit that site a week or month later, the web site will see that cookie and look up that code of aa349d32 on it's own files and see you as a customer. So the home page will conjure up some other Tom Clancy books for you to see right on the front home page of that web site. Where somebody else would get a different home page based upon their own buying habits. ----continued----
Link Posted: 11/24/2001 2:21:41 PM EDT
----part 2---- [b]Cookie evils[/b] - Cookies can be written any number of ways. Originally each web site wrote their own cookies. Big companies still write their own. But sometimes a web site will outsource their cookies to a "cookie company" such as Doubleclick. Doubleclick will write the cookies and put it's own number on the cookie. The result is if you visit 28 web sites today...15 of which were "Doubleclick-powered" web sites, then Doubleclick would have a list of demographics of your browsing styles. [b]Reality[/b] - You go visit DiscoverCard.com and log in and do some work there. Discover will use it's single cookie for security, marketing and convenience....all in one cookie. But according to Discover's "privacy policy" they're not sharing info with anybody. So only DiscoverCard.com can decipher that cookie (though somebody could tell that you've been to DiscoverCard.com). You can turn off cookies, but then you wouldn't be able to use half the web sites out there. You can set the cookies to "notify" you, but this will drive you to an early grave with a zillion requests to accept cookies. I generally leave mine "on" and at the end of the day/week...I'll clear cache (above), then go into cookies and delete most all of them except the ones I'm familiar with such as AR15.com's cookie.
Link Posted: 11/24/2001 3:07:42 PM EDT
[:)] [url]http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/fr/556342/posts[/url]
Link Posted: 11/24/2001 3:16:17 PM EDT
Yup, and now my laptop at home and the computer at work both "auto-log" me in so now I dont remember my own password.....since its been so long that I've actually typed it in. [(:|)]
Link Posted: 11/25/2001 12:57:05 AM EDT
I wish DoubleClick would just go out of business. Those rat finks always try to get placed into my "cookie" folder. Since I like to keep my computer clean, I set my "cookies" to prompt before every one. DoubleClick never get's into my computer. Right now there are only seven cookies on my puter. Just formatted it yesterday.
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