EU: Cookie legislation costs companies EUR 1.8 bln a year

Monday 1 December 2014 10:09 CET | News

European Cookie legislation costs companies EUR 1.8 billion (USD 2.3 billion) per year, according to a report issued by the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF), reports.

Moreover, the costs include compliance costs, as well as lost productivity costs for websites operators such as web shops.

In ecommerce, cookies are used to provide a better shopping experience for consumers. Under the current European rules, a web shop has to inform the consumer about which cookies it uses. However, the precise interpretation of the rules on information in the Directive varies in the European Member States.

Some countries therefore require web shops to obtain explicit consent about cookies from consumers with an “agree” button, while other countries accept a more simple implied consent. Non-complying websites can get considerable fines from the national authorities.

The report also highlights that small web shops with fewer resources due to compliance costs, may decide not to include personalized advertisement for consumers and that, if internet users have to give their consent every time they visit a website, new visitors will be discouraged from using that website. A potential consumer who wants to buy a product, loses at least two seconds to notice, read and click on cookie notifications, even though other users just ignore them.

Additionally, the cookie policy has had few positive effects on users’ online privacy because they do not often read pop-ups and notifications about privacy, as they are considered boring or too difficult to understand. The differing interpretations of the e-Privacy Directive throughout Europe hamper cross-border online trade.

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Keywords: EU, Cookie, legislation, cist, y-o-y, yearly, bill, Europe, companies, merchants, consumers, data
Categories: Payments & Commerce
Countries: World
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