Cookie Compliance

The new EU Cookie laws is in effect from the 26th of May. If you own or run a website it these laws affect you. Failure to comply can attract a fine of £500,000.

Say Whaaat!

The UK has signed up to an EU directive which aims to protect online privacy of consumers by making them aware of the information that is collected about them whilst using the internet. They have chosen to make it compulsory for websites to gain a users permission before they use cookies or tracking software.

Almost all websites use this technology. Despite widespread condemnation and a years delay, this ill thought out change in legislation will be coming into force and sites that do not comply with the law can be fined. A full description of the law can be found here.

Erm, What Is A Cookie?

Very simply, a cookie is a small file which is stored in your browser to record what you have done. It allows a website to know what actions you have taken (like logging in for example). They cannot carry viruses and they can make no changes to your computer.

But Do I Need To Use Cookies?

No. But then you don’t “need” to have a website either. All eCommerce sites require them for usability reasons such as adding items to baskets.

There are exceptions to this law of which the shopping cart functionality is one. But many others are not; Including the way in which a site records how many users visit a site (ie Google Analytics). Cookies, in general, improve the experience of all websites.

So What Is The Solution

First of all, you could ignore the law. The chances that there are the resources available out there to administer the fines to every uncompliant website across the whole of Europe is unlikely. Popular opinion in technology circles is that the law will prioritise site owners using very intrusive data collection technology before rolling fines out to all sites – However, as with many of the attempts to regulate the web, there is no way to truly know how things will actually transpire.

The second option is to simply comply with the law. This is something we can help with and our development and design teams have already come up with solutions to the cookies laws for Ecommerce sites. These take no more than an hour to implement.

Get in touch or call us to see how we can help – Remember that the law changes this month! You can of course keep up to date with developments in this legislation change (and all the latest web marketing advice) by following us on Twitter or Facebook