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  It's almost impossible to use the internet for long without coming across a website asking if you accept cookies. That's because of a range of laws designed to protect your data privacy In this guide we'll explain what cookies are, how they work, and how you can make informed decisions about them !Let's jump in What are Cookies? A cookie is a small text file that is created by a website and  stored on your computer  through your browser. The idea is that the website can access the cookie at a later time and retrieve information about you. The website then customizes pages based on this information. Many uses of cookies are  uncontroversial  and help the users. Examples include: Storing your username (but not your password) to save you having to remember it or type it in when you return to a site Keeping items in a virtual "shopping basket" for an online retailer website A site such as a weather forecast service or movie theater listings 'remembering'