Cookies are files created by the sites we visit and which save information about the user's navigation. This information is used to improve the browsing experience, maintain access and provide relevant content.
The complexity of the issue lies in sharing this information with third parties. Because it is personal data, it is legally protected by the European Union and the government. Specifically, it is included in the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
It is essential to comply with the law in order to avoid problems in the future and ensure the correct treatment of users' personal data. Despite this, many websites do not comply with the current regulations, both because they are not updated and because they have not paid sufficient attention to this issue. For that reason, at BCM Marketing we want to help to those responsible and in charge of the treatment of the data to process it correctly and explain the latest news in this regard to comply with what the control authorities dictate.
Latest changes in data protection policies
On 22 October last, the Spanish Data Protection Agency (known as AEPD) published a tool that makes it possible to ascertain whether the rights and freedoms of users may be at risk as a result of a security breach on the web.
This resource, which aims to promote transparency and proactive responsibility, is completely free and easy to use. By answering a short form you will indicate whether there is any possible risk associated with a security breach.
In addition to the regulation mentioned in the previous section and this help provided by the government, we can find a whole set of resources from the AEPD that are very useful for analysing the risk and compliance of the page. We can find guides, tools, computer graphics and explanatory videos that help to dispel any doubts that may arise.
This establishes changes with respect to the previous one (November 2019), such as the obligation to give the possibility of rejecting cookies from the start of navigation on a web page, among others.
The issue of data protection is somewhat complex and is continually being updated. At BCM Marketing we have legal advice to ensure full compliance and help our clients achieve total security for their websites.
Types of cookies according to their purpose
To understand cookies, how they work and their objectives, we will now look at what kind of cookies exist. There are many types of cookies, each specific to a single function. In order to summarise them more briefly, we have grouped them into two large blocks: those categorised according to the AEPD and those used by Google.
According to the AEPD they can be classified into three groups:
Depending on who manages them
- Own cookies: These are managed by the website itself, which is the legal owner.
- Third party cookies: Those of third parties are managed by entities other than the owner of the website, these usually have analytical purposes.
Depending on the time frame
- Persistent cookies: The information is stored continuously, offering the possibility to access it when necessary.
- Session cookies: The information recorded is only used during the user's browsing session.
Depending on the functionality
- Technical cookies: These are responsible for monitoring traffic and extracting information in terms of data communication.
- Personalisation cookies: Their function is to generate a personalised and adapted on-page experience for the user. How to change the language of the website to that of the user, for example.
- Analysis cookies: Their purpose is to record navigation data that serves to know the behaviour of users and to establish a visitor profile.
- Advertising cookies: These are applied in the administration of spaces intended for the promotion of products or services on the same page.
Types of cookies used by Google services
Knowing the cookies that Google uses helps to better understand how they work and to take advantage of services such as Google Ads or Google Analytics. These are the following:
- Preference cookies: Google uses these cookies to create a user experience that is adapted to your language and to provide relevant data according to your geolocation, such as the weather in your city.
- Security Cookies: Google uses security cookies to authenticate users, prevent fraudulent use of login credentials and protect user data from unauthorized third parties. These usually include encrypted and digitally signed records that allow various types of cyber attacks to be blocked, such as attempts to steal information from forms, among others.
- Process cookies: Process cookies are a type of technical cookie that helps the website function and provide the necessary services. Without these, the website will not function properly.
- Advertising Cookies: Google uses them to make advertising more effective for users and advertisers. Some of the functions of these cookies are to show relevant advertising to the user, to improve the performance of the campaign and to avoid showing advertisements that the user has already seen.
- Session state cookies: Their function is to record data on the behaviour of web surfers on a website. The aim is to improve the experience continuously through a better knowledge of the most common incidents.
- Analytics Cookies: Google Analytics is a Google analysis tool that allows us to show website owners how users interact with their sites. These cookies are responsible for collecting all types of data in order to display site usage statistics.