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EU Cookies

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has published guidelines on the business use and storage of cookies.

The law which applies to how businesses use cookies and similar technologies for storing information on a user’s equipment such as their computer or mobile device changed on 26 May 2011. The ICO guidance on the new cookies Regulations sets out the changes to the cookies law and explains what steps businesses need to take to ensure they are complying.

Following an EU Directive, businesses are now obliged by law to obtain the explicit consent of each of their websites’ visitors before storing any data on their device. Websites must also provide ‘clear and comprehensive information‘ about the purposes of the storage.

The UK actually introduced the amendments on 25 May 2011 through The Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2011. However, website owners have been given until May 2012 to make their websites compliant with the new legislation.

It remains to be seen how strictly this law will be enforced, but the ICO have already introduced a maximum penalty of £500,000.

Internet link: ICO cookie guide

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