The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) last week issued guidance on new regulations that will affect thousands of UK business owners following the the publication of the Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) (Amendment) Regulations 2011.
The new regulations, which came into force on 25th May 2011 and which apply to all EU websites, require website owners to get “explicit consent” from users before cookies are stored on their computers. In effect this makes thousands of websites illegal under European law.
The ICO has said it will not begin enforcing the new rules for another 12 months. Businesses should, however, take immediate steps to:
- Investigate which cookies they are already using;
- Consider how intrusive these cookies are;
- Consider how they will obtain consent.
The ICO will be issuing separate guidance on how it intends to enforce the new regulations.
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