How to clear cookies for a specific website

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You probably already know you can go in to your web browser’s settings and clear ALL your cookies for every website you’ve visited. But did you know you can also go in and clear out the cookies for a specific website? You sure can.

cookies

 

And why would you want to do that? In some cases, a website might be using an app that is not working properly and you want to view the site “cleanly” (without cookies from previous visits to the site). In my situation as a tech, sometimes a client will tell me that they’re having trouble with a particular website, and if I have visited that site in the past, the cookies from that site might prevent me from seeing the same thing my client is seeing.

You certainly could go in and just clear ALL the cookies from ALL the websites you’ve visited, but that becomes really inconvenient because it might cause you to have to log in to all those sites again when you go back. In this case, clearing all your cookies is kind of like demolishing a house and rebuilding it just to replace a broken window (yes, there are other options which I’ll cover at the end of this post).

So rather than clear the cookies from every website, you want to just clear the cookies from the one website that is giving you the problem. Here’s how you do that.

How to clear cookies from a single site in Chrome:

1. Click on the Settings icon in Chrome (the 3 dots in the top right)

2. Click on Settings, then scroll down and click on Advanced

3. Scroll down to the Privacy section and click on Content Settings

4. Click on Cookies

5. Click on See all cookies and site data

Now you’ll see a (probably long) list of the websites that have stored cookies on your computer. If you want, you can scroll down the list and find the site you’re working with. But the easier way is to just put the domain name (or part of it) in the “Search cookies” field to go straight to the cookies for that site.

Website cookies list

 

Then when you see that site name, just click the trash can to the right of it to delete the cookies for just that website. When you’re done, just close the Settings tab.

How to clear cookies from a single site in Firefox:

1. In Firefox, click the settings button (3 horizontal lines in the top right)

2. Click on Options

3. On the left side of the window, click on “Privacy and Security”

4. In the History section, click on “remove individual cookies”:

Firefox cookies

 

Then you’ll see the list of the individual sites. Just like in Chrome, you can scroll down the list and remove the one you’re looking for, or you can type the domain name in the search at the top.

Firefox cookies

 

There are a couple other considerations when thinking about this process.

If you don’t want to clear ALL the cookies and other information because your browser stores all your passwords and you’d have to log in to each site again, I would encourage you to rethink your password storage process. If your browser stores your passwords, they are not secure. Anyone that uses your computer (or hacks into it) can have your entire list of passwords within a few seconds. You should use LastPass instead. It’s free and secure. I wrote about LastPass here.

Also, there’s a different way to view a website and not have it affected by cookies, history, passwords, cache, or anything. Just use your browser’s “incognito” mode. In Chrome, click the Settings button and choose “New Incognito window”. In Firefox, it’s the Settings button, then “New Private Window”. When you open a website that way, it’s as if you have never visited that site before – so no cookies will be in effect (and visiting that site will also not be stored in your browser history).

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Cindy
January 15th, 2018

I could not find the “New Incognito Window” in settings. Can you help? Do I need to update Chrome? How?
Thanks.

Scott Johnson
January 15th, 2018

When you click on the 3 dots, it’s the 3rd option from the top (New incognito window).