Cookies are small files saved to your device, holding a bit of data relating to you and the website you have visited.
For example, your name, address and email address details that you entered for that website may be saved as a Cookie for that website, so that the same information can be filled in next time you visit the website.
When you save your login details for a website by ticking a 'remember me' box, a cookie will be created on your device.
Cookies are not the only things that websites save to your device.
Some websites save 'Website Data' to your device - data that tracks what you looked at (for example, that chair that you were looking at buying, or that hotel you were looking at), then re-uses that data next time you visit.
Depending on your settings, this saved 'Website Data' may then be shared with other, so that tailored ads can be 'served' to you based on your previous browsing history
You have control over whether websites are allowed to store cookies and website data while you browse, and over what websites can use those your website data.
This is done in Settings->Safari->Block Cookies.
To stop Website Data being shared with other websites - in particular, to avoid those ads that seem to follow you wherever you go - select Allow from Current Website Only.
I would never choose the Always Allow, as this provides an 'open slather' for websites to use the data stored by other websites
You can view the list of the websites that store data on your device, and how much data each of these websites is storing.
You can even delete the website data for specific sites - especially those that keep 'serving' their ads to you, as if they are stalking as you browse!
Go to Settings -> Safari -> Advanced -> Website Data.
The sites that store data are listed in size order, with only top 10 shown initially. Tap on Show All Sites to see the full list of websites saving data to your device.
To delete the website data for individual sites, tap Edit at top right (while in the Settings -> Safari -> Advanced -> Website Data option) then tap the red left-hand circle to delete saved data for a specific website.
Or, you can choose to Remove All Website Data (which is shown at the bottom of that screen), to start a clean slate!
Below are some other previously published handy hints about the Safari and web browsing on your iPad and iPhone. An iTandCoffee Club membership is required to view these past Handy Hints.
Not yet a member? Why not join today - see here for details!
- iPhone, iPad Navigation - Get back to top of a list or a page really quickly
- Navigating when On Safari!
- Getting to places on Safari quickly!
- My Safari uses Yahoo (or Bing) - how can I make it use Google?
- How do I limit the web pages returned in Safari to recent Australian pages
- Defining your Favourite websites in Safari
- Easy access to your Favourite website in Safari
- Is there a quick way to close all open tabs in Safari
- Getting back a Safari page you accidentally closed
- Finding some text on a Safari Page
- Dealing with a Mac web browser that has been hijacked by Ads
- 'Tab view' in Safari on iPad - easier management of your open pages/tabs
- An easier way to close web pages
- Reader View - for clutter-free web page viewing
- Easy way to choose to view 'mobile' format web page in 'desktop' format
- Quickly add a web page to your set of Favourite pages
- Use Camera to scan and enter credit card information
- Shared Links for your RSS feeds!
- Private browsing per page and Private Browsing always
- Safari Saved Passwords in Native apps
- Is your iPad/iPhone's Safari storing all your Passwords for anyone to see?