Online Privacy News and Views
The UK’s most used cookie law compliance model is not compliant if Do Not Track requests are ignored by websites setting tracking cookies, according to the UK Information Commissioners Office (ICO) case work team.
Facebook has announced the launch of a new online advertising platform that looks set to take consumer tracking to a whole new level, and is likely to open up a new front in the battle for online privacy. It may also be in breach of EU marketing and privacy rules.
Last week we learned that a marketing start-up Renew has been trialling the use of tracking technology on the streets of London – through wifi enabled recycling bins. The news of this activity caused quite a stir, to the point that within a few days, the City of London Corporation, the local government body, ordered the data collection to stop just a few days later, and asked the Information Commissioners Office, the UK’s privacy regulator, to investigate a potential breach of the law. See – City of London smartphone tracking wi-fi usage banned. However, the question of the legality of the activity is only part of the story, what is perhaps more interesting is the potential for reputational damage that results from such covert tracking activity.
The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) appears to be taking a more proactive approach to reminding businesses of their obligations under the cookie law, than the UK’s official enforcer of the cookie regulations, the ICO.
Last week the ICO gave us advance notice that they were going to change their website to an implied consent model of cookie law compliance.
Yesterday the ICO published its much anticipated update to its enforcement activity for compliance with the cookies law. It is not as dramatic a document as some had perhaps expected or hoped for. There are no announcements of big fines.
The ICO has launched a new ‘enforcement’ section on its website today which includes the first reports on its activity to monitor and enforce the cookie law.
The ICO came under fire recently when a publicised Freedom of Information request published by PC Pro claimed their response as evidence that they are not properly prepared to enforce the cookie law.