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Enforcement of Cookie law is ‘consumer trust building opportunity, not business threat’ - DMA

02 May 2012 2:38 BST Back
Enforcement of Cookie law is ‘consumer trust building opportunity, not business threat’ - DMA
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The enforcement of the E-Privacy Directive, or ‘Cookie law’, should be regarded as an opportunity for brands to build trust with consumers rather than as a threat to sales, the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) has stated.

Speaking ahead of the publication launch of the DMA’s how-to guides for website and mobile marketing compliance with the Cookie law, Chris Combemale, executive director of the DMA, said:

“There’s plenty of evidence to show that the majority of website owners and digital marketers have yet to take any steps towards complying with the new law. The standard reason cited is the belief that the law won’t apply to them. There’s also a prevailing fear of becoming compliant and losing sales as a result of consumers rejecting cookies.

“While this may occur in the short term, research by the DMA has shown that consumers are more likely to trust a brand and share data with them if they’re open and transparent about how they will use it. Giving consumers straightforward information about your website’s cookies will demonstrate a commitment to using their data responsibly.”

Since the E-Privacy Directive came into law in May 2011, the DMA has been regularly informing its members through guidance notes and events about the changes in legislation to minimise the cost and disruption caused by the transition to compliance.

With just over three weeks to go before the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) starts to enforce the law, the DMA has now published a 10-step overview guide to managing cookies for website owners and a separate how-to guide aimed specifically at mobile marketers.

The guides were launched at an industry seminar featuring presentations from legal experts, marketing practitioners and a Google representative.

Tim Roe, the email marketing representative on the DMA’s Cookie Compliance Working Party and director of data segmentation and email deliverability for RedEye, said that the DMA’s guides are must-reads for marketing practitioners:

“The industry has had a year to prepare for the Cookie law, but ambiguity surrounding the interpretation of the requirements has proved to be a barrier to compliance for some companies.

“Our work has given DMA members vital extra information and direction beyond the guidance issued by the ICO. There is no excuse for companies to do nothing. Even if full compliance is not achievable at this point, organisations must take active steps to comply where possible, with the regulations.”

The DMA’s overview guides to managing website cookies and mobile marketing cookies compliance can be downloaded for free.

The DMA has also teamed up with the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) to produce a how-to guide on cookie compliance for email marketers, which will be published later this month.

Tristan Garrick, DMA PR manager
Tel 020 7291 3315

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