The Cookie Monster
Through bad planning of a difficult to implement scheme the ICO has managed to become the internet bad guy Â in the last few days.
Last year, the new cookie law was due to be implemented on the 26th May 2011. Â The idea behind the law is that any website based in the EU or serving the EU, must give the visitor the chance to opt out of small files (the cookie) being placed on their machine. Â These cookies are used for all kinds of things, reducing the logins required, tracking how often a visitor visits and what they might look at, that sort of thing.Â However a few hours before May 26th 2011, the ICO said we had another year in which to comply with the ruling.
Cookies can track you much further than from the site that issued the file. Â Facebook, google and many other big web names use them to track your journey and serve adverts on ‘partner websites’.
Implied consent is certainly a valid form of consent but those who seek to rely on it should not see it as an easy way out or use the term as a euphemism for â€œdoing nothingâ€.
Some websites have decided to give visitors a pop up, anÂ opportunityÂ to opt-out (David Hopkins who I follow of twitter for example). Â Some sites are informing visitors through their privacy section or policy (like the BBC). Some sites have so far done nothing at all.
EU law states that I must inform you that this site may store a small ‘cookie’ file on your device. This should only happen if you comment on a post or join this site. If you do not agree, please do not comment or join, but feel free to read 🙂
As users we’ve always had theÂ opportunityÂ to opt-out of cookies. Â Browsers have an option to allow cookies, to ask, or to deny. Â So if cookies and what they contain do worry you, Â I think it is probably best you head for your browser, rather than rely on individual companies andÂ web masters because it seems they are not really sure what to do!