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UK watchdog can't investigate cookie crime

by on14 August 2012

Rules in place but can't be enforced

The UK Information Commissioner's Office cannot investigate a single website over the new cookie consent rules, because its investigative team isn't ready.

The cookie laws came into force a year ago, but it seems that the ICO is not ready to investigate anyone yet. The regulations required websites to alert users before dropping cookies onto their computers came into force in May 2011.  It followed an EU directive, but the ICO gave websites a year's grace period to update their sites.

More than 320 sites have been reported via the ICO's online submission tool, but not a single site has been investigated. According to an ICO response to a PC Pro Freedom of Information request the team which will have responsibility for this is not in place. Once this happens any organisations not in compliance will be identified, then further action will be considered as appropriate.

The team is not expected to start work until the end of this month, but employees have now been hired, an ICO spokesman said.

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