What is a Cache?

Caches temporarily store data that hardware or software frequently access. As cached data is stored closer to a device, it enables faster load times and improved user experience.

Caches work by storing readily available copies of small data files, removing the need to retrieve such data from larger memory banks - a much slower process.

The specific way caches operate depends on their type - the device or application where they are located.

Types of Caches

  1. Central Processing Unit (CPU) Cache
  2. Web Cache (or HTTP Cache), including: Web Client Cache (or Web Browser Cache) and Web Server Cache
  3. Database Cache
  4. Content Delivery Network (CDN) Cache
  5. Domain Name System (DNS) Cache

Cache Benefits

  • Improved Speeds
  • Reduced Network Congestion
  • Offline Access

Cache Drawbacks

Why You Should Clear Cache

Caches drawbacks are all cause to clear cache routinely. Sometimes cache stores corrupted files or does not update files when needed, which causes performance issues and can even cause applications to crash.

Cached data also broadens your attack surface, for example, web browsers stores sensitive data like personally identifiable information (PII), transaction history, and browsing history.

Clearing cache, especially on public networks, can help improve data security.

Key takeaways

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    Caches store temporary data files which devices access frequently to allow faster and repeated usage.
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    Cache types are categorized by the device or application on which they are operating.
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    Cache should be cleared regularly to ensure functionality, improve data security, and reduce cyber risks.
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