How to make sure you are not allowing third-party cookies

Dec 2, 2021 5:17:52 PM | Industry How to make sure you are not allowing third-party cookies

Tips & tricks to ensure that your website, application, and vendors are not using third-party cookies that could infringe on customer privacy.

All internet users are familiar with the ever-pervasive cookie popups across the web. Visit a website, and a cookie banner asking for your permission to store cookies in your browser is nearly inevitable. But what if that didn't need to be the case?

At Trustpage, we made a commitment from day one to not use third-party cookies as a business, and we're aiming to help you do the same.

Evaluating current third-party cookie usage

There are a number of tools that exist to check if your website uses third-party cookies and to audit your compliance with laws such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), and ePrivacy Directive (EPD).

 

Using a cookie scanner

Cookie scanners are a great way to quickly identify if public pages of your website or app are using cookies. One such tool that doesn't require an email is CookieServe —check it out here.

 

Using browser developers tools

Most web browsers contain developer tooling which allows you to see all cookies set by a website.

How to check cookies in Chrome

  • Right-click on the page and then click Inspect. This will open Chrome's Developer Tools.
  • Go to the Application tab and find the Storage section. Expand the Storage and you will see a section for Cookies
  • Within the Cookies section you can click each domain to see the cookies that are set.
How to check cookies in FireFox
  • Right-click on the page and then click Inspect. This will open the Web Developer Tools.
  • Go to the Storage tab and click on the Cookies section.
  • Within the Cookies section you can click each domain to see the cookies that are set.

How to check cookies in Safari

  • Right-click on the page and then click Inspect Element. This will open Safari's Developer Tools.
  • Go to the Storage tab and click on the Cookies section.
  • Within the Cookies section you can see the cookies that are set.

Removing third-party cookie usage

If you have identified that one of your vendors is adding unwanted cookies to your website you have a few options:

  1. Review the vendor's documentation to see if there is a way to disable the use of cookies.
  2. Reach out to the vendor to see if they are willing to remove the cookies.
  3. Choose another vendor to suite your needs that does not use cookies.
  4. Block unwanted cookies using a Content Security Policy header (you can see this in action on this page).

 

Preventing future third-party cookie usage

 

Choosing the right vendors

When choosing new vendors it is important to vet their use of cookies before making a decision. At Trustpage, we solve this by requesting trial usage of the vendor's product and implementing a proof-of-concept. At this stage we can discover any use of cookies that may be used for our specific implementation. If any cookies are discovered we work with the vendor to remove or disabled them if possible.

 

Implementing a cookie monitoring service

A regular scan is important for ensuring no new cookies are incidentally added to your website. Cookie Bot is one of many tools that can perform a regular scan.

 

Need additional help?

Reach out to us at cookies@trustpage.com and we'd be happy to help you follow through with a commitment to avoiding third-party cookie usage.

Jay Lloyd

Written By: Jay Lloyd

Jay is the Head of Trust at Trustpage. After work, you can find him on his Peloton. He lives in Detroit.