Google and Facebook have come a little unstuck in the cookie department as French watchdog Commission Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libertés (CNIL) slapped the pair with a €150m and €60m fine respectively.
The CNIL kicked off its investigations after receiving complaints regarding the way cookies can be refused on facebook.com, youtube.com and google.fr. The crux of the matter is that while there is a button to permit immediate acceptance of cookies, there is not the equivalent to refuse them as easily. “Several clicks are required to refuse all cookies, against a single one to accept them,” explained the CNIL.
“The restricted committee,” it went on, “considered that this process affects the freedom of consent: since, on the internet, the user expects to be able to quickly consult a website, the fact that they cannot refuse the cookies as easily as they can accept them influences their choice in favor of consent. This constitutes an infringement of Article 82 of the French Data Protection Act.”