Guidelines on behavioral advertising rules issued

The Information Commissioners Office has published a document to help businesses understand the EU Privacy and Communications Directive, which comes into force this month.

The law, which comes into effect on 26 May, will require all companies to get informed consent from their website visitors about whether it can store information.

Complaints about sites that aren’t compliant will be taken by the ICO. It said the document gives advice to businesses and practical steps to help them remain compliant when the law comes into force.

Christopher Graham, the information commissioner, said, “The implementation of this legislation is challenging and involves significant technological considerations. That’s why we’ve already consulted a wide range of stakeholders. But we want to spread the net as wide as we can and would welcome further comments from others who have practical examples to share. This advice is very much a work in progress and doesn’t yet provide all the answers.”

The document includes advice on what types of cookies will be included, what will happen if people don’t comply, advice on how to assess how intrusive the use of cookies is and how to best obtain consent, for example.

It follows the publication of regulations by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, which give consumers more control over how information about their web use is stored and used by companies, and said the UK government would implement the law by taking on an opt-out approach.

The ICO will follow this advice document with a set of guidelines for consumers on what the legislation will mean for them.

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