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Websites Must 'Wake Up' To EU Cookie Legislation

The Information Commissioner's Office has advised UK website owners to make their platforms compliant with the new EU legislation about web browser cookies.

The EU legislation, which comes into effect from May 25th, will make it mandatory for website owners to seek 'explicit consent' from users about storing and accessing browser cookies on their computers. Cookies allow advertisers and websites to track a user's online activity for, amongst other things, target based advertisements.

Speaking during the annual Data Protection Officer conference in Manchester, Information Commissioner Christopher Graham said that UK business and organisations that run websites must 'wake up' to the fact that the legislation is just two months away.

He also added that the ICO, government and private sectors were finding a workable solution to deal with the EU directive so that it doesn't harm UK businesses. A middle path is being sought that would protect the interests of websites and users at the same time.

“So we are clear that these changes must not have a detrimental impact on consumers nor cause an unnecessary burden on UK businesses. One option being considered is to allow consent to the use of cookies to be given via browser settings,” the commissioner said in a statement.