Cookie consents on websites has gained increased focus since the adoption of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the EU.
There are specific categories for cookies defined under the GDPR, as seen in your Privacy Preference Center and Cookie Declaration on Secure Privacy. As you know, cookie consent must be granular and specific because of GDPR - your website visitors need to know for what purposes you serve the cookies, as well as have the ability to deny those cookies or to consent to.
For example, if your visitor consents to the use capabilities of "Social media" cookies that collect personal data (like Twitter, etc), still a separate consent has to be explicitly given to "Media player" services (like YouTube, etc) and other cookies under different categories as well.
Then, what are the Essential cookies and why they can not be unselected?
Essential cookies are strictly necessary for the basic functionality of your website and can not be switched off is our solution. An essential cookie is set as a result of logging in, filling in forms on the website, remembers a given user (session) while they browse your website. Another example is keeping track of what page a user is on, or from what account a user is accessing your site. Blocking these cookies in a browser typically breaks some capabilities of the website. Under the Cookie Law and the GDPR, essential cookies and strictly necessary cookies are the same, and these necessary trackers don’t require user consent.
Other Cookie categories you may see inside Preference Center and/or Cookie categorization -
- Preferences — Unlike essential cookies, these cookies are used to supplement and/or extend your site’s functionality but aren’t necessary. These cookies may be set by first- or -third party providers that were added to enhance features. For example, these cookies can help play videos on your site. Blocking cookies under this category may affect operation of some or all services listed.
- Analytics and Customer interaction— When it comes to the GDPR and tracking cookies, analytics cookies are used to track and analyze user behavior, therefore website owners and operators are concerned about disabling these cookies without explicitly given cookie consent from a visitor. As an example of analytics' cookies can be services that counts visits, analyze traffic source and helps to know the average time spent, what part of the website is being used most active, which pages are/are not popular. The information is aggregated and anonymous. Customer interaction cookies are being used to support a survey/questionnaire functionality of your website. These cookies do not contain personal identifiable information unless the customer opts in to have it stored.
- Advertising — Advertising cookies are a common form of a third-party cookie. If you display ads on your site, those third-party ad owners may track your users and build profiles through cookies attached to show personalized and relevant advertisements. And like for any third-party cookie providers, under GDPR compliance, it is your GDPR liability, and therefore you should exercise caution when using advertising cookies of your ad vendor.
- Social media — If you have any subscribe, like or share buttons/features on your site that connects with any social media platform, you turn to use social media cookies. These are capable of tracking user's browser across other sites and building a profile of interests, affecting the messages and content when visiting other websites. Disabling this category blocks the functionality of social sharing buttons/tools.