What are actually cookies?
Cookies are small files, which are used for access to the Internet, that are stored on the computer, the mobile device, the tablet or other equipment of a given User.
Cookies are installed through a request by the server of a given web page to your web browser (i.e. Internet Explorer, Chrome, Safari, Mozilla) and are completely "passive" (they do not contain any software, viruses or spyware and do not have access to the information of the User hardware).
What are cookies used for?
Cookies are used in a way, allowing the Website to function better and more efficiently. Cookies are needed in order for you to browse the Website and to use their services and functionalities. Without those essential cookies, our Website will not function as fluently as we would like them to and we might not be able to provide you with certain services or features.
Cookies are also used in order to prepare anonymous statistics, which aid us at understanding, how a given user prefers to use our Website, allowing us to improve its structure and contents, without identifying the user. The Releve Website may also use certain Wordpress features, software such as Google Analytics, Google Adsense or Google Adwords, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or other social media “like” buttons or plugins, which contain cookies.
What types of cookies do we use?
We use two types of cookies – for the user session and fixed ones. The former ones are temporary files, which remain on the device of the User until the end of his/her user session or until closing the web browser. The fixed files remain on the device of the User for the period, specified in the cookies themselves or until deleted by the User.
Do cookies contain personal data?
On their own, cookies do not require personal information in order to be used and most often, they do not identify internet Users. The personal data, collected during the usage of cookies can only be gathered in order to ease the use of the services by the User. This data is encrypted in such a way that it does not allow unauthorized persons to gain access it.
Deleting the cookies
In general, applications for access to web pages (web- or mobile browsers) allow the storage of cookies by default. These settings may be changed in such a way that the automatic administration of cookies is blocked by the web browser or that the User would be informed each time when cookies are sent to his/her device. Detailed information about the options and management of cookies may be found in the settings of the Web Browser. Limiting the usage of cookies may affect some of the features of the Website.
Security and confidentiality
Cookies are NOT viruses. They take the form of simple text. They are not made out of code and cannot therefore be executed or execute themselves alone. Consequently, they may not be duplicated or copied into other networks in order to get started and copied once more. Since cookies cannot perform those functions, they cannot be regarded as viruses.
Most often, browsers have built-in privacy settings, which provide different levels for the acceptance of cookies, the period of their validity and their automatic deletion after a User has visited a given website.
Advice on secure and responsible surfing, using cookies
Here is some advice, which can ensure safe surfing, but with the help of cookies:
If you are the only person, who uses the computer, you may set longer terms for expiration of the storage of the browsing history and access to personal data.
If you share your computer access with somebody, you may set your browser settings to delete the surfing data every time you close your web browser.
Ensure that your browser is always up to date. Many of the attacks, based on cookies, are realized when exploiting the weak spots of old and non-updated versions of the web browsers. Cookies are everywhere and they may not be circumvented if you would like to enjoy your access to the best and biggest websites on the Internet.
It is possible that you set your browser in a way that does not allow for cookies to be accepted anymore or you can set your browser to accept cookies only from certain websites. All modern browsers offer the option to change cookie settings. This includes computer browsers, as well as mobile device browsers. These settings can be found in the "options" menu or the "preferences" menu of your browser.