Mark Hynes - thoughts on corporate disclosure

Opinions on changing rules, changing best practices, and their effect on investor relations officers.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Cookies rule!

It can be a struggle to win eyeballs for the IR website. And when you have got them there, it would be nice if they stayed around for a bit. The IR website as we know is a key part of the IR team’s communications armoury.

So it is slightly troubling that regulators are planning on making it mandatory for users of websites to ‘opt in’ to cookies, rather than opt out. Another potential disincentive to access content.

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport is leading on implementing the new rules in the UK while the Information Commissioners Office will be responsible for regulation. They commented that ” Organisations with an online presence must prepare now for the anticipated new rules on user consent to cookies. They should audit how their sites operate, how they receive data from online partners and providers and what they receive so they have a clear understanding of where cookies are used and what for.”

The new law, which will come into force on in the UK 25 May 2011, is the result of amendments to the European Union’s E-Privacy Directive (Article 5(3) (in case it matters to you).

So far, the DCMS has yet (as I write) to publish precisely how these rules should be implemented. However the implications could be large. At a minimum, changes to Privacy Policy statements are likely to be needed.
For more detail on this see a note published on the Global3digital (see disclosure) site.


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