What’s with all the Cookies?

What’s with all the Cookies?

We’re not talking about the cookies you hide in your desk drawer, we’re talking about the annoying website pop ups that ask you to accept the ‘cookies policy’… this does not mean you get free cookies!  

 

What are cookies exactly?

Cookies track your online activity. Websites use cookies to keep a record of your recent activity, to record your login information, or remember what’s in your shopping cart. Simply put, cookies track what you’re up to online.

A cookie is packet of data/information that a computer receives, then sends back without changing or altering it. The website sends the ‘cookie’ to your computer. Your computer stores it in a file located inside your web browser.

 

So… what’s the deal – do I click ‘yes’?

Nothing bad will happen if you click ‘yes’. If you have been a web user for a while, you’ve had your fair share of cookies. Cookies make life convenient; they remember your passwords, and mean you can leave the couch for a cup of tea, without losing the shopping in your cart. At the end of the day, it’s up to you –  accepting is a personal preference.

 

Why are we seeing all the cookie pop ups now?

This is due to the European Union General Data Protection Regulation (EU GDPR) Policy. It is designed to protect the user (aka website visitor). Due to this regulation, you must provide a policy on your website about why you are processing website visitors’ data and how long you will store it.

 

Do we need to comply in New Zealand?

If you supply or offer goods or services (including free website services and/or information) available to European Union citizens, you will need to comply.

 

What if I don’t comply?

However unlikely it may feel, you could be liable for a large fine, even though your business is based in New Zealand. The fine for not complying is currently 20 million euro or 4% of your global annual turnover (whichever is higher).

One year on from implementing this policy European data protection agencies have issued fines totalling 56 million euro… Ouch!

 

What can you do to protect your business and customers?

Need a cookies policy on your website? – contact us today, and we’ll get this sorted for you.