Cookies: an association files 422 complaints for non-compliance with GDPR rules in Europe



Published on

August 16, 2021

(ETX Daily Up) – Almost three years after the arrival of cookie banners, many companies and sites are not in a position of compliance with the European Data Protection Regulation. An association, Noyb, has just filed 422 complaints in a dozen countries to move the lines.

Fundamental text on the processing of personal data in Europe, the RGPD, which established the unpopular cookie banners, is starting to grope. Criticized at its inception, the regulations have experienced a real acceleration during successive confinements. Many companies had come to grips with the goals of respecting privacy. However, for some time, actions have become scarce and a large community of diehards is slowing the movement.

An association, noyb, co-founded by Max Schrems, an Austrian activist campaigning for the protection of personal data, has just filed 422 complaints in ten countries to the data protection authorities. After the first warnings at the end of May 2021 with letters reporting a “draft complaint”, the association put its plan into action for recalcitrant companies.

The opt-out option, the main obstacle

The warnings, however, made things happen. About 42% of all violations identified were corrected within the first 30 days. Despite everything, 82% of informed companies continue consciously or unconsciously to violate the rules of the text of the European Union. Main object of resistance: the opt-out option concerning cookies. The text requires to make the withdrawal of the consent given as simple as its authorization. Yet only 18% of sites added an opt-out option.

On the Noyb association’s website, Max Schrems explains the concerns of some companies: “In informal discussions, we heard that some companies were concerned that their competitors would not put themselves in a position of compliance, which would create unfair advantages. Others are waiting for clear decisions from the authorities in their countries before starting to comply “. The militant group has however encountered a problem of language barrier, 50% of complaints will be lodged with the Austrian data authorities, the “Datenschutzbehörde”, which will then take care of transmitting it to the countries concerned.

While some sites have become up to date, such as Mastercard, Nikon, Seat or Forever 21, the giants – like that – like Amazon, Twitter, Google or even Facebook have not followed up. The association made 36 complaints against them in order to fix their cookie banners. Obviously, the shortfall of these firms is massive given their dependence on advertising.

In the future, the association aims to analyze, review and report on more than 10,000 websites in one year. “We expect the first decisions by the end of the year. By then we should see most other websites move to simple yes or no options.” expressed co-founder Max Schrems.

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