Feb 22, 2012

OMG, keep your PECR up…

Why didn’t I know about this? Well actually I did, but ignored it as ‘flack’ in the Endless Universe of IP debate… (boy, this system of ours sucks). A European directive made law last May 2011 comes into full effect this May the 25th. As of that date, if you run any website that uses cookies then you will have to tell ALL users that you do so, and how you will use any of the data you store, their activity, etc. So in principle in order to comply with the law you have to declare this on your sight, the ICO site gives you an example of how they are doing it, you should adopt it within your terms and conditions. Yes Google and Facebook have to declare how they use your information too..

Published 24 May 2011
Open letter on the UK implementation of Article 5(3) of the e-Privacy directive on cookies (PDF 84kb)
This document, written in consultation with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), describes and explains the UK’s intent when copying out the wording of the provision into the Privacy in Electronic Communication Regulations. http://to.ly/cerK

They have the authority to fine up to £500,000
(IMO don’t think they will but how did they arrive at this nice round sum?

The solution to this is I guess simple, just make sure you’re open about the information you are using from those that visit your website how you store it and how you use it, bit like a release form. However, the user experience is bound to be affected by this, and in our cultural landscape the more paranoid will no doubt NOT want to share their information anyway, but I have to assume that many more will probably see the humble cookie as the agent of Big Brother….