I don't use any Google services directly and have Google's safebrowsing support disabled.

Yet, this PREF cookie for °.google.com which appears to have a unique identifier is unremovable. It restores itself immediately with the same identifier every time I remove it. Even blocking °.google.com for cookies in Firefox does have no effect.

How is this cookie able to restore itself so quickly? How can I block it?

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    It would help to know which platform and browser you are using. It may be set by the search bar in your browser on launch. Google describes their cookies here: google.com/policies/technologies/types – pseudon Mar 2 '14 at 15:00
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    @pseudon Thanks for the reply. This setup is running under Ubuntu 12.04 with the latest firefox webbrowser. I don't use Google Search. browser.search.order.* and browser.search.selectedEngine don't use Google. – king_julien Mar 2 '14 at 19:54
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    @pseudon Thanks for that link. "The PREF cookie may store...whether or not you wish to have Google’s SafeSearch filter turned on." Which is of course ridiculous: 1) The 'may' nullifies all guarantees which follow in the description. 2) Google's policies change from time to time but I never accept any of them because I don't use Google products. 3) Even if the cookie says that I have safebrowsing disabled, it still allows unique long-term tracking. – king_julien Mar 2 '14 at 20:00
  • @pseudon You link was very helpful, but unfortunately it does not answer how I can block firefox from setting this cookie. – king_julien Mar 2 '14 at 20:04
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    I don't know the origin or how to block it, which is why I commented and didn't answer. There's a lot of chatter about this cookie out there, but you seem to have taken care of the obvious causes. I assume you also have tested with no add-ons or plug-ins enabled. May also want to search about:config for "goog" and rule the rest of those out (maybe the mail or geo handler?). I agree with the pernicious nature of Google cookies, the policies that govern them, and the ability of NSA et al to hijack them. – pseudon Mar 3 '14 at 16:18

See https://stackoverflow.com/questions/6301114/how-pref-cookie-google-com-appears-in-firefox. The answers by Bacon, Ian, and pm1 are correct as of Firefox 30.0.

There is an additional consideration for users of Firefox extension Biscuit. If you have Firefox extension Biscuit (as of v2.4.2) installed, Google's safebrowsing PREF cookie normally can't be deleted unless it's a session cookie. To delete it, disable Biscuit, restart Firefox, delete the cookie, enable Biscuit, restart Firefox. Go into cookie Exceptions and make cookies from google.com "Allow for Session." This Google PREF cookie will thereafter be deleted when you exit Firefox, since it's now a session cookie.

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Use Self-destructing cookies add-on for Firefox.

Description of the add-on:

Fix the web. Gets rid of a site's cookies and LocalStorage as soon as you close its tabs. Protects against trackers and zombie-cookies. Trustworthy services can be whitelisted.

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