How to remove cookies

By April Kohl

Cookies are small text files stored on your computer by websites that wish to maintain information about your site use. In many cases, cookies store your login information so you do not have to keep entering your username and password each time you visit. Sometimes sites store “tracking cookies”, which collect information on where you go after viewing their adverts and because of this, knowing how to remove cookies from your computer is important.

Things You'll Need

  • Computer

Step 1

Open Internet Explorer 8. Find and select the “Safety” option from the Internet Explorer Command bar. Select the “Delete Browsing History” option to bring up a new browsing history window. Select “cookies” from the list of options and click “Delete”. Internet Explorer will now remove all the cookies it has stored on your computer.

Step 2

Open Mozilla Firefox. Find and select the “Tools” menu from the right-hand side of the menu bar, next to “Help”. Select “Options” from the drop-down menu. Click on the “Privacy” option and select “Remove individual cookies” to bring up the list of cookies Firefox has stored. Either select the cookies you wish to remove one by one (pressing “remove cookie” after each one) or click “Remove all cookies”.

Step 3

Open Safari. Find and select the “File” menu. Select “Preferences” to bring up the preferences window. Select “Security” and click “Show cookies”. Highlight the cookies you wish to remove (either by clicking on an individual cookie or selecting the first and shift-clicking on the last to select them all). Press the “Delete” button. Safari will now remove all the cookies it has stored on your computer.

Tips & Warnings

  • Although cookies are small and take up little space, heavy Internet users can find they build up a large bank of cookies very quickly. Consider cleaning your web browser's cookie folder regularly to enhance your Internet experience by removing unwanted tracking cookies and other junk from your computer. This has the added advantage of increasing your security by not keeping you logged in on websites when you aren't using the computer.
  • Different versions of Internet Explorer store cookies in different folders; some using a variety of locations. If you don't use the latest version of Internet explorer, try opening the "Start" menu and selecting the “Run” option to bring up a command line window. Enter “inetcpl.cpl” to run the configuration tool. Select the “General” tab and click “Delete browsing history”. Click “Delete cookies”, then click “Yes” when asked to confirm.