Cookie is a small file that is stored on your computer when you visit a website. Cookies contain various information that the website reads when you visit it again. Most modern websites use them.

Cookies themselves are not harmful; they do not contain viruses or any other malicious code. They serve various purposes, such as sessions (e.g., logging into forums), shopping carts in online stores, displaying advanced content on websites (e.g., maps, videos), tracking site visit statistics, supporting social media plugins, and displaying personalized ads.

Legal restrictions on cookies are primarily a result of the misuse of cookie technology for tracking users, thereby invading privacy on the internet.

Types of cookies
  • Cookies can have various ingredients. Good cookies are very useful for visitors, especially for sessions, logins, shopping carts, and similar tasks on a website.
  • Some cookies are primarily useful for website owners. For example, they help monitor the amount of traffic and the reach of their website. Indirectly, they also benefit end-users by providing content creators insights into which contributions on the website are interesting for visitors, allowing them to bring more engaging content.
  • However, some cookies, at least from the perspective of the Information Office, are not good. These unpalatable cookies mainly record data about your online activities, process them, and provide the obtained information to third parties, usually advertisers. This leads to different people seeing different ads online, with each person viewing ads for products and services they are more likely to buy. For owners of tracking cookies, this enables greater earnings from advertising.
The Information Commissioner’s Office categorizes cookies primarily based on invasiveness:
  • Temporary or session cookies
  • Persistent or stored cookies
  • First-party cookies
  • Third-party cookies

Each type of cookie is treated differently in legislation and the commissioner’s guidelines, making it challenging for website owners and developers to achieve compliance with the Electronic Communications Act (ZEKom-1) and the Personal Data Protection Act. Website owners are required to thoroughly educate themselves about the privacy issues related to cookies and raise awareness among their website visitors about their use. In the case of more invasive cookies, they must obtain consent from visitors for their use.

List of used cookies
Name of the cookie Purpose Expiry time
_ga Google – Google enables advertising analytics. 2 years
_ga_< container-id > Google – Google enables advertising analytics. 2 years
ad_storage Enables storage (such as cookies) related to advertising. 1 year
ad_user_data Set consent to send advertising-related user data to Google. 1 year
ad_personalization Set consent for personalized advertising. 1 year
analytics_storage Enables storage (such as cookies) associated with analytics, e.g. duration of the visit. 1 year
_gid Google – Google enables advertising analytics. 24 hours
_gcl_au Google – Google enables advertising analytics. 90 days
_fbp Facebook – Store and track visits across websites. 90 days
wp-wpml_current_language Language selection. Session
cookiesconsent Cookie Notice. 1 year