Deleting spyware
November 19, 2009 8:20 AM   Subscribe

removing spyware called

I use a IMac, with Firefox. When I go to delete all cookies (under Preferences) all get deleted except one called ""

I would like to delete this,but I have no tech skills. How can this be done without playing with the register?
posted by Postroad to Computers & Internet (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
FWIW, Firefox 3.5.5 on my Mac (10.6.1) does not exhibit this problem for me. Are you sure it's not just getting immediately re-set on the next page load (DoubleClick serves a very high percentage of web ads)?

As a last resort, FF cookies are stored in ~/Library/Application Support/Firefox/Profiles/[SOMEUNIQUEID]/cookies.sqlite. Delete at your own peril!
posted by mkultra at 8:31 AM on November 19, 2009

This might help. Doubleclick is a widely-used ad serving platform and can track things like the sites you visit in order to serve more targeted ads, but I wouldn't call it spyware.
posted by Metroid Baby at 9:02 AM on November 19, 2009

Bear in mind that some of the cookies FF stores are opt-out cookies, i.e. you want to keep them there. If you click on the little triangle thing next to, you should get another and the word id next to it. Click on that and, at the bottom, it should say CONTENT: OPT_OUT. In other words you have opted out of, which is good. BTW is not really spyware but an ad tracking cookie.
posted by TheRaven at 9:37 AM on November 19, 2009

See also the firefox addon TACO for this kind of thing. It doesn't address doubleclick directly, but it does keep you out of a lot of tracking and advertising automatically.
posted by boo_radley at 10:19 AM on November 19, 2009

The cookie is not spyware. It is an ad tracking cookie that is used by Doubleclick and its parent company Google. Here is a site with more information about the process. Ads on sites using Google AdSense will now also set the Doubleclick cookie by default.

If you want to see the information stored in your Doubleclick cookie, go here. You will see the behavior information the Google collects about you, and you will be able to edit it. You will also be able to opt out.

Once you opt out, that will set a cookie (as TheRaven says) noting that you have opted out. If you delete this cookie, your information will start being collected again, so it is important to keep it.

Hope this helps!

(I am an engineer who works on Google's advertising products.)
posted by goingonit at 10:52 AM on November 19, 2009 [3 favorites]

It worked...thanks all.
posted by Postroad at 11:44 AM on November 19, 2009

The only thing that will result from you disabling the Doubleclick cookie is that you will see ads that are less relevant to you than they would be otherwise.
posted by bingo at 2:15 PM on November 19, 2009

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