Cookies, Google and EU privacy laws

6.3.2012

We all love eating cookies but using them on websites has always been somewhat frowned upon

Cookies are very useful things as they store information on a server that can help you browse, some of the features you take for granted such as the browser remembering your username and password may rely upon cookies. But the use of  cookies and their impact on privacy laws is a grey area as cookies can vary greatly in both their function as well as the type of information that they store

In May 2011 the EU set a Privacy and Communications Directive which covered the use of cookies or at least asking for a user´s consent before the cookies were deployed. UK websites were given a year to comply to this directive.

However, only last week, Google re-ignited the privacy debate when they released their latest update. In a somewhat expected move they have made it clear that information harvested by one of their products will be shared with their other products. Google believe that this latest update doesn´t breach the EU directive and is done to enhance the user´s experience but it looks like that may depend on your own interpretation of the law!

The great thing for all Arkom websites is that we don´t use cookies within our build standard

We use sessions instead as they avoid the risk of your website not operating correctly if someone has blocked the use of cookies on their machine. Sessions are based on the browser being open so may result in a user having to log-in each time they visit your site but does ensure you avoid the minefield of legislation that may follow cookies.

We´ll be watching with interest to see how this case develops and then impacts on the wider web industry.