The EU Cookie Law
The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) gave British websites a 12 month grace period to update their sites and published guidelines for compliance. This grace period ended on 26th May 2012.
What are cookies?
A cookie is a small file which is sent to your computer by a website. Many sites use them for things like storing site preferences, analysing web traffic, keeping you logged in and remembering shopping-basket items. Web browsers tend to automatically accept cookies but there are settings that allow you to customize how you deal with them. You can find more information about cookies, as well as find help on how to disable or delete them at aboutcookies.org.
Your implied consent and how to opt-out
According to the ICO, “Implied consent is a valid form of consent and can be used in the context of compliance with the revised rules on cookies.” By continuing to use this website, we’ll assume you understand that your actions will result in cookies being set and have given your implied consent.
If you prefer not to have these cookies set, you may opt-out by configuring your browser to reject the cookies. Information on how to do this can be found at aboutcookies.org. Google provides a Browser Add-on for Chrome that enables you to opt out of all Google analytics.
Cookies on our clients’ sites
Sometimes a client wishes to display content from third-parties, such as advertising, games or ‘widgets’. These often also set cookies but we’d need to perform an audit to find out how they affect their site’s compliance.
Is your site compliant?
The table below describes the cookies we set on this site for public visitors.
|X-Mapping-ihnbadbn||Session||End of browser session||Used by our web hosting company to manage the load on their servers.|
|__utma||Persistent||Two years from set/update. Used to distinguish users and sessions.||Set by Google Analytics when their code executes and no existing __utma cookies exists. The cookie is updated every time data is sent to Google Analytics.|
|__utmb||Persistent||30 mins from set/update||Set by Google Analytics to determine new sessions/visits. The cookie is updated every time data is sent to Google Analytics.|
|__utmc||Session||End of browser session||Set by Google Analytics to determine whether a visitor user is in a new session/visit.|
|__utmz||Persistent||Six months from set/update||Set by Google Analytics to store the traffic source or campaign that explains how a visitor reached our site. It is updated every time data is sent to Google Analytics.|
You might find these articles helpful.
- Information Commissioner’s Office EU cookie law guidelines
- International Chamber of Commerce’s guide to the cookie law (PDF, 204 KB)
- Econsultancy’s solution to EU e-Privacy Directive compliance
- Cookies law changed at 11th hour to introduce ‘implied consent’
- Q&A: The ICO’s Dave Evans on EU cookie law compliance
- EU e-Privacy Directive (PDF, 1.2MB)
- EU ePrivacy Public Consultation document (PDF, 48KB)
Below is a short (11min 45sec) Cookies FAQ video from the ICO.