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New EU Cookie Law (May 2012)


Many of you will have seen the news coverage of the new EU cookie law and will be wondering how this affects your Hubb sites.

A cookie is a small piece of text sent from a website and stored in a visitor's web browser. The cookie can be retrieved by the website the next time the visitor returns to the website, so that the website can, for example, remember saved preferences. The new EU law means that certain types of cookies, those deemed non-essential to the running of a website, can only be set after the visitor has consented to their use.

Hubb itself only sets cookies which are essential for the operation of your site (to do with whether a user is logged in or not), and therefore no consent is required from site visitors before setting these cookies, so if you are not using any third party applications you probably won't need to do anything!

Of course, many of you will be using applications and plugins which DO set cookies – for example, Google Analytics. The Information Commissioner's Office have stated that such cookies are low on their list of priorities for enforcement action and have indicated that an approach of "implied consent" is acceptable for this type of cookie. This means that you state clearly on your site that these cookies are in use, and that by continuing to use the site the visitor agrees that cookies can be used.

To help with this, we have added an additional option to your Footer layout components which will (optionally) enable you to include a "Cookie" policy. The default text for this will include information about the cookie which Hubb sets and how the visitor can disable cookies in their web browsers if they do not wish them to be set. The text of the policy will be editable so that you can include information about any cookies that are set on your site through third party components such as Google Analytics.

We'll also provide a component which will enable you to place a message in any layout which will draw attention to your cookie policy. Dismissing this message will itself set a cookie so that the message is not displayed in future.

The legislation on cookies is very much open to interpretation, but we believe these features will enable you to maintain compliance. We do encourage you to read the guidance here and to draw your own conclusions. The features that we are providing are entirely optional and you are free to implement any solution of your choice.

As always, if you have any questions please don't hesitate to contact us.