Neil Turner's Blog

Blogging about technology and randomness since 2002

Cookies aren’t spyware

I’m not a big fan of spyware tools that insist that tracking cookies are spyware. Sure, you probably don’t want them, but they’re not nearly as much of a threat as spyware. Webroot Software, makes of anti-spyware software, reckon that the average PC in the UK has 18 instances of spyware on it, and that 55% of all UK computers have a spyware infection. At least, that’s the impression this BBC article gives.
But El Reg has another article which goes into the statistics in more detail. Counting all forms of spyware, including tracking cookies, would put each machine at 18 infections. Disregard cookies, and that figure is only 4.5. Still quite high, but not nearly as headline-grabbing.
Really, cookies are not spyware.

One Comment

  1. I see why tracking cookies could be classed as spying, but can’t see how it’s spyware.
    4.5? Woah, I don’t have 1!