Skip to main content

Third party cookies see major drop thanks to GDPR

(Image credit: Image source: Shutterstock/Wright Studio)

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is having a significant effect on tracking cookies, new research has found. 

A report by the Reuters Institute at the University of Oxford found that the number of cookies on EU news sites has dropped by almost a quarter (22 per cent). 

In the UK, it dropped even more – 45 per cent.

The report looked at cookie usage across EU news sites in April 2018 (before GDPR) and July 2018 (after GDPR). A total of 200 news sites, from seven countries, were analysed – the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Poland and Finland.

German news sites were at the other end of the spectrum, with just six per cent fewer cookies in July compared to April. Poland has had a 20 per cent increase, and it’s the only country with an increase in cookies, too.

These cookies differ and have various tasks. Those that tracked things related to website design and optimisation have seen a 27 per cent drop. Advertising cookies saw a 14 per cent drop, while social media cookies nine per cent.

The number of Facebook and Twitter social buttons and their partnering cookies was down seven per cent – from 84 to 77 per cent.

But it seems as this drop only affected the ‘little guy’ – Facebook, Google and Amazon have seen very few cookies removed. Only one per cent of EU news sites dropped Google cookies, five per cent Facebook cookies and two per cent Amazon cookies.

Image source: Shutterstock/Wright Studio

Sead Fadilpašić is a freelance tech writer and journalist with more than 17 years experience writing technology-focussed news, blogs, whitepapers, reviews, and ebooks. And his work has featured in online media outlets from all over the world, including Al Jazeera Balkans (where he was a Multimedia Journalist), Crypto News, TechRadar Pro, and IT Pro Portal, where he has written news and features for over five years. Sead's experience also includes writing for inbound marketing, where he creates technology-based content for clients from London to Singapore. Sead is a HubSpot-certified content creator.