Cookies are everywhere on the web. A quick look in my browser’s settings shows a couple of hundred of them on my machine at the moment. This law means that every website has to declare what cookies it sets on your computer, what each is used for and let you accept (or reject) the use of those cookies. Well, at least the sites based in the EU do. I’m all for web privacy and it’s ironic that this law is being implemented to protect people’s privacy at the same time that other laws are being proposed to do the opposite. But it’s not simple to ensure you’ve complied with the law and most businesses are still figuring out what to do about it. It seems that even personal websites are covered by this law, which presents a massive implementation, communication and enforcement problem.
It’s also quite tricky, technologically. I use WordPress to run both this blog and my wedding photography site. Several WordPress plugins try to set cookies as soon as you visit the site, whilst the new law wants site owners to give people visiting the site the opportunity to opt out before any cookies are set. Someone could find my site from a search engine and land on any one of the four hundred or so pages, so a notice on the landing page doesn’t seem to be enough. I also use Google Analytics, which sets its own cookies as soon as a page is viewed. I used this neat Firefox extension to find out what cookies my site is setting. I will also being trying out this extension to WordPress which has been developed specifically in response to the new cookie law.
How has this law affected you? Are you ignoring it and hoping that it goes away or have you had to design and implement something to help you comply with it?Pin It