The new directive amends the EU's 1995 privacy rules, which were developed when both the EU and the Internet were both very young. Obviously there have been drastic technological, geopolitical and commercial changes in the EU since 1995, so the new rules are intended streamline existing privacy regulations and enforcement protocols that currently vary widely across member countries.
If you operate an EU-based website, here are three approaches you could take right now in order to achieve compliance:
- Disable all cookies: This would be the simplest approach to compliance, but would leave you with no analytic insight to your website.
We knew this sort of thing was coming, but it will take a little longer for the U.S. to implement enforceable privacy rules. Last month the Obama Administration unveiled its Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights, a set of voluntary guidelines. Similar legislation was introduced in the U.S. Senate, but with an election year well under way, don't expect your cookies to be tossed anytime soon.