The Cookie Law in Belgium - April 2013

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  • 1. The Cookie Law in Belgiumpresented by
  • 2. A cookie ?๏ What is it for ?• Stores useful info ➝ language preferences (ex: Google),account logins, etc.• Enhances the website experience (content & servicepersonalisation)๏ Marketing Purposes• Allows the tracking of users’ behaviour (visited websites, etc.)& the creation of profiles (interests, etc.)• By linking this behaviour to previously collected personaldata (name, e-mail address, etc.)• Better advertising targeting + remarketing
  • 3. how it works๏ What is it ?• A text file saved on the hard disk of a person visiting a website๏ ≠ Cookie types• Technical Cookies (first party cookies): technical part of awebsite (language preferences, login, etc.)• Tracking Cookies (third party cookies): record visitors’behaviour (visited websites, etc.)• Session Cookies: memorise preferences only during a session• Permanent Cookies: stay on the hard disk until removed by theuser or reaching the due date
  • 4. how it works
  • 5. tRacking cookies๏ Privacy invasion• Date collection for commercial purposes• Sales to third parties• Internet surveillance๏ Marketing: behaviour tracking
  • 6. legislation๏ At the European level• E-Privacy directive or «Cookie Law», 2011๏ At the Belgian level• The Privacy Protection Law, 1992• Telecom Law, 2012๏ Different interpretations• Netherlands• Germany, Italy, UK, etc.
  • 7. eu directive๏ The e-Privacy directive or «CookieLaw»• Since may 2011• All website owners whose headquarters are located inthe European Union must obtain the agreement of anyuser in order to store tracking cookies on their computersany other similar devices (smartphones, tablets,...).
  • 8. eu directive๏ Before the law• This agreement was tacit• The user had to set his browser in order to accept orrefuse the use of cookies- Few people knew about the existence of cookies- Or didn’t know how to block them
  • 9. 1992 LAW๏ The Privacy Protection Law• Obligation to indicate on the website:- What user data is stored and who manages this data- How the user can access and view his data & how hecan change it• This mentions have to be shown either on an onlinequestionnaire, the home page, a separated page, or adisclaimer
  • 10. telecom LAW๏ The new Telecom Law (2012):• The website owner must inform the visitor that he usescookies• Why he uses them• He must ask for permission to store a tracking cookie onthe device used by the visitor- most websites install those cookies by default, unlessthe user refuses them or withdraws his permission
  • 11. ≠ interpretations๏ The Netherlands require:• The explicit permission of the user• Through a pop-up๏ Germany, Italy, GB, etc. Belgium ?• The permission can be implicit ➝ the user is supposedto set his browser parameters if he doesn’t want cookies๏ A confusing law:• MyLex «Cookierecht»: website+ mobile application +campaign
  • 12. Consequences
  • 13. risks & fines๏ Non-compliance to the law• If the website doesn’t mention that it makes use of cookiesor if it doesn’t give the possibility to refuse them• If the website installs cookies on the user’s device despitehis refusal๏ Complaints to:• The website owner• The authorities: no data yet for Belgium๏ Fines• Up to 500.000£ in GB (ICO - Information Commissioners’Office)
  • 14. other issues๏ Website ergonomics• If applying the law like the Netherlands do:- Display of a pop-up in the middle of the screen- Harms the user-friendliness of websites- Could prejudice e-commerce websites: extremeapplication of the Cookie Law (IAB)๏ Google Analytics
  • 15. other issues๏ Remarketing• E-commerce websites will not be able to track theclients/prospects who refused the cookies๏ Future of online marketing ?• Behavioural databases• Precise targeting
  • 16. links๏ Cookie Law (Great-Britain)๏ Cookierecht (Belgium)๏ Cookieapp๏ IAB Cookie Demo Site