[thelist] Truth about cookies?

John Dowdell jdowdell at macromedia.com
Wed Nov 14 16:08:33 CST 2001

At 8:01 PM 11/13/1, Chris Johnston wrote:
> the press likes to claim that they scour your computer tracking
> your every move and reporting this info back to their master
> (and however else might be asking).

Well, "the press" does say many things. They're often a good info source,
because they have a vested interest in receiving your continued attention,
but like any info source they can't be taken uncritically.

> has someone created a way to engineer the cookie to be more
> then it appears? Is there a way for it to be malicious that
> I don't know about?

Allie and Jeff had core info. I also rely on privacyfoundation.org. Their
FAQ page contains Richard Smith's "web bug" work, as well as a pertinent
interview with Lou Montulli.

(I woke up to cross-domain cookie misuse during last summer's DoubleClick
controversy, and after reading an article which showed how Passport already
implemented some cross-domain checks via cookies and quick redirects.)

At 5:21 AM 11/14/1, Raymond Camden wrote:
> I've always thought that the reason cookies got such bad press
> is that when they were introduced, the users were NOT given the
> tools to properly manage them... If Netscape had been a bit more
> responsible about how it introduced them... then maybe we
> wouldn't have the problems we do today.

I now use Netscape 6.x as my main browser in the office, and I really like
its cookie-management features.

By the way, for that "European Parliament wants to ban cookies" story,
their own site drops cookies unannounced on visitors:


John Dowdell, Macromedia Tech Support, San Francisco CA US
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