There will be all sorts of legislative problems with regards compliance with EU marketing regulations once Brexit occurs. Some suggest that initially there will be little change due to the complexity of the subject. In other words, we will tick along under the current laws and regulations for a while yet.
The European Commission has recently published its proposals for reform of the ePrivacy Directive. There are a number of subjects covered, including direct marketing which we will report on in a later post. We will focus on cookies for the time being.
Of note is that the update will be in the form of regulations rather than, as is the current case, a directive. What this means is that it will not require each individual state to ratify the new law. It will be EU wide from the enabling date, and this is a highly optimistic May 2018.
It is doable, but there can be few delays in the legislative process. First of all, though, a warning.
The EU, no doubt aware of the tardy nature of compliance with the current directive, has set the maximum fine for some at €20 million or 4% of worldwide annual turnover, whichever the greater.
The changes in cookie requirements are not overwhelming but give rise to a requirement to check, and no doubt modify, your systems. The definition of cookie is extended to include information intending to identify the type of device the person is using.
Consent can be given, as of now, via browser settings although there are conditions attached. However, such consent requires affirmative action on the part of the customer. There will be requirements for changes to browser configuration. This will be for any new installation although there’s a later date for updates.
Withdrawing consent to cookies must be as easy as giving it.
There is a considerable overlap with regards to the requirements of various forms of online marketing, be it sales via email marketing or online via a website, which is all to the good. One problem might be seen as the short notice, but it is only a target.