If you’ve visited any websites recently, you’ve likely had to accept or deny cookies. Online privacy laws exist to give website visitors the choice of what information site owners can collect.
Although there isn’t a cookie law in place across the entire U.S., California regulates cookie usage through the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) and California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA). There’s also the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and ePrivacy Regulation that protect citizens of the European Union.
A cookie is a small text file that your web browser uses to save your browsing information. The computer cookies allow websites to remember your online activity, device, and browsing preferences.
Analytics cookies may also gather data about your visitors, including demographics, time on site, and what pages they visited. Third-party cookies pose the biggest privacy issue because many also track visitors even after they leave your site.
To be compliant with these privacy laws, your visitors must freely give their consent — it can’t be ambiguous in any way. Also, the visitor must be able to withdraw consent at any time. As the website owner, you should be able to show proof of user consent.
The CCPA also gives consumers more control over the data companies collect about them. The law secures more privacy rights for California state residents, such as allowing them to opt out of having their personal data sold to third-party companies and the ability to request that any data that’s already been collected get deleted.
Issues with CCPA and GDPR compliance could result in costly fines — some of these can be as much as $100,000 per violation. Depending on the number of visitors your website has, that could add up to millions of dollars. That’s why it’s crucial you know how to avoid GDPR fines.
- A list of the types of cookies you or third parties may use on your website.
- Information on how visitors can opt-out of having cookies placed on their devices.
- Contact information for your company.
- Squarespace: How to Add a Cookie Banner
- WordPress: How to Create a Cookie Consent Pop-up
- Weebly: How to Add a Cookie Notification
- Wix: How to Display a Cookie Banner on Your Site