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How to Clear Cookies from Your Browser: Chrome, Safari, Edge, and Firefox

    How to Clear Cookies from Your Browser Chrome Safari Edge and Firefox - Softwarecosmos.com

    Cookies are small text files that websites place on your computer or mobile device to store information about your browsing activities. Over time, these cookies can build up and persist for weeks, months, or even years. Clearing your browsers’ cookies can free up storage space, improve security, and enhance privacy by removing tracking cookies placed by websites you’ve visited. This guide will explain step-by-step how to delete cookies in all major browsers.

    Why Clear Your Cookies?

    Here are some key reasons you may want to clear your browser cookies:

    • Free up space – Over time, accumulated cookie data can take up significant storage on your devices. Deleting old cookies frees up the room.
    • Improve privacy – Cookies often contain tracking data used by websites to monitor your online behaviors. Removing cookies erases this tracking information.
    • Enhance security – Large cookie stores provide more potential attack surface area if a browser flaw is exploited. Regularly clearing out cookies reduces this risk.
    • Start fresh – If your browser is buggy or slowing down, deleting cookies often helps restore normal performance.
    • Fix website issues – If a site is malfunctioning, clearing its cookies can resolve errors by resetting them.
    • Remove logins—Clearing cookies logs you out of website accounts, which is useful on shared devices.

    Routine cookie clearing provides many benefits, though the downside is needing to re-login and reconfigure settings on sites that use cookies to remember you.

    How to Clear Cookies in Chrome

    How to Clear Cookies in Chrome

    Cookies are small files that websites place on your device to remember things like logins and site preferences. However, over time, accumulated cookies can slow down your Chrome browser and take up storage space. Old cookies also allow sites to keep tracking your web activity for advertising purposes.

    Clearing your cookies helps speed up Chrome’s backup, frees up storage, and improves your privacy. It also logs you out of sites so nobody else can access your accounts on shared devices.

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    Deleting cookies in Chrome is easy. Below, you can follow! Or see the above image.

    1. Click the 3-dot menu > Settings.
    2. Select the Clear browsing data.
    3. Click Advanced mode.
    4. Choose the Time range to delete from using the dropdown menu. Select All time to clear everything.
    5. Check the box for Cookies and other site data.
    6. Click Clear data.

    This will delete all cookies from all your Chrome profiles and log you out of sites. You can also opt to just clear cookies for specific sites individually.

    Deleting Cookies in Firefox

    Firefox gives users robust control over removing unwanted cookies that may be slowing down browsing or tracking activity across websites. Its settings provide customizable options to delete specific cookies while keeping others intact.

    To clear Firefox cookies:

    1. Click the hamburger menu > Settings.
    2. Select Privacy & Security on the left sidebar.
    3. Scroll down to the Cookies and Site Data section.
    4. Click Manage Data.
    5. Search for any specific sites you want to clear cookies for or use the sidebar menu to select All Sites.
    6. Click the trash icon to delete cookies from the selected sites.

    Firefox also provides an option to clear cookies when you close the browser under Delete cookies and site data when Firefox is closed for automatic clearing.

    Clearing Cookies in Safari

    Cookies help websites remember things about you, like items in your shopping cart, login information, or preferences. Sometimes, cookies from websites you no longer visit build up over time and can slow down your browser. Clearing your cookies periodically can help your browser run faster.

    Clear your cookies in Safari on your Mac or iOS device as below!

    1. Click Safari > Preferences.
    2. Go to the Privacy tab.
    3. Click Manage Website Data.
    4. Select the Cookies and website data option.
    5. Click Remove All or search for individual sites to selectively clear.

    Safari on iOS does not allow direct cookie management. You’ll need to go to Settings > Safari > Clear History and Website Data to do a full wipe of all cookies and browsing history.

    Deleting Microsoft Edge Cookies

    Microsoft Edge offers a few ways to delete cookies:

    1. Click the 3-dot menu > Settings > Cookies and site permissions.
    2. Toggle Allow sites to save and read cookie data to block cookies.
    3. Select See all cookies and site data to search and delete individual cookies.
    4. Alternatively, select Choose what to clear under Clear browsing data to quickly select cookies and hit Clear now.
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    Edge is configured to automatically clear cookies after closing the browser in some cases. You can customize this under Cookies and site data.

    Clearing Cookies in Opera

    Opera makes it easy to purge cookies in just a couple clicks:

    1. Click the Easy Setup menu.
    2. Select Privacy and security.
    3. Click the Clear browsing data button.
    4. Ensure Cookies and other site data is selected.
    5. Pick your desired Time range to delete from.
    6. Click Clear data.

    This instantly deletes all Opera cookies in all open tabs and windows. For finer control, you can also manage site-by-site permissions under Cookie settings.

    Clearing Cookies on Mobile Browsers

    Deleting mobile browser cookies varies by device but generally involves:

    • iOS – Go to Settings > Safari > Clear History and Website Data
    • Android – In Chrome go to Settings > Privacy > Clear browsing data
    • Windows Phone – Tap … > Settings > delete history
    • Blackberry – Open Options > Privacy and security > Clear cookies

    Check your device’s browser help docs for exact steps. Mobile browsers often clear cookies and history together.

    Clearing Cookies in Incognito/Private Modes

    Incognito or Private Browsing modes, which are built into most browsers these days, prevent cookies from being saved during a session.

    Closing all incognito tabs or windows automatically erases all temporary cookies. This provides easy short-term privacy.

    However, cookies on regular browser windows are unaffected by Incognito/Private modes. You still need to manually remove those for permanent deletion using the steps outlined above for each browser.

    How to Clear Cookies from Your Browser

    Using Cookie Manager Extensions

    Advanced users can also install browser extensions like Cookie AutoDelete to gain even greater control over managing cookies:

    • Whitelist certain sites to always allow cookies from while deleting others.
    • Automatically purge cookies from tabs after closing them.
    • Set cookie expiration times rather than keeping them indefinitely.
    • Isolate cookies to individual sites so they cannot be read across domains.
    • View detailed cookie metadata like size, content, and creation date.

    However, cookie manager extensions can pose a privacy risk if they have broad access to read all your cookies across sites. Only install from trustworthy developers.

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    The Effect of Clearing Cookies

    When you clear your cookies, you’ll immediately notice:

    • You are logged out of any accounts on all websites that use cookies to store your login session. This is the biggest impact.
    • Any website settings like themes or preferences will be reset to defaults since those were often stored in cookies.
    • Shopping carts will be emptied on ecommerce sites, requiring you to start over.
    • Some sites may ask you to re-enter information like addresses when filling out new forms since saved entries are erased.
    • You will appear as a brand new visitor to sites you had an existing cookie history on.

    Overall functionality remains, but cookies’ customized and logged-in experiences disappear until the cookies are recreated. Expect to need to reconfigure settings and re-login to sites after a clearing.

    Conclusion

    While cookies provide useful functionality like remembering logins and preferences, they can build up over time and pose privacy risks. Regularly clearing your browser’s cookie cache provides benefits like freeing up space, improving security, resetting site glitches, and enhancing privacy by removing tracking data.

    All major browsers offer easy ways to delete cookies in bulk from your settings. Clear your cookie cache every month or two to enjoy a faster, more private browsing experience.

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