Cookies law in force from today: ICO seeks to lead by example

Today the long awaited new cookies rules come into force in Europe. If you have a website, what are your plans for compliance? Do the changes keep you up at night or do you think its all a bit of hot air and enforcement is unlikely to happen anytime soon anyway?

In the UK, the ICO recently published some guidance on its approach to the new law (which in short see the move from an “opt” out approach to the use of cookies to one requiring “opt-in” consent). Whilst helpful in some respects it came as a bit of surprise to some by going further than expected. Many had thought, given the Information Commissioner’s comments in various TV and radio appearances early this year, that compliance was unlikely to really become an issue for businesses until the autumn. Instead the guidance emphasises that you can’t simply sit back and wait for a browser- based solution to emerge (the Government is still working on this with industry and have stated current solutions are not enough) or assume that no complaint or action will be taken for some time. Instead we are told businesses must be considering and have a plan for how they will implement alternative methods of obtaining users’ consent from today – such as pop up boxes or tick box consents to terms of functionality. None of which seem in any way attractive to most businesses or consumers.

So Datonomy thought it might be interesting to see what the ICO’s cunning solution for compliance of its own website is and this is the result at the top of their home page. Impressed?! Surely this can’t be the gold standard for businesses to follow – can it?! Datonomy thinks there are better options and so watch this space for news of some roundtable industry discussions we will host in the coming weeks to brainstorm other solutions.

Let us know what you think and Datonomy will be on the look out for other examples popping up (literally or not) from today…..

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