The demise of cookies has been long foretold. Ever since they were invented in 1994, questions have been raised over their privacy implications and potential misuse; yet they have persisted, unloved but indispensable. However, it seems like the death knell has at last sounded for third-party cookies, with both Apple and Google finally taking concrete steps to rein in their use. But given that third-party cookies and mobile Ad IDs still underpin a huge amount of the web and its economics, what will life be like without them? And more importantly, will it actually be better than it was before?
Amidst all the craziness of the global coronavirus pandemic, it’s easy to forget that the world keeps turning, and that mundane things like new privacy laws coming into force are still happening. The impact of COVID-19 on global privacy practices is the stuff of a future post, but in the meantime, let’s distract ourselves with a little light reading about California’s new privacy law, the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) and how it compares vs GDPR.
Ah, GDPR. Like the guy (or girl) you matched with on Tinder six months ago who got less interesting the more you got to know them, it just won’t go away. It keeps sliding into your DMs with teasing headlines like, “Data Protection Authority of Baden-Württemberg Issues First German Fine Under the GDPR” or “Washington Post offers invalid cookie consent under EU rules“. And there you were thinking you were done with it back in May, when you sent all your users that “Please respond to this email to stay on our mailing list” email and threw that giant banner about cookies up on your website.