UK ICO calls on G7 countries to tackle cookie pop-ups challenge

The ICO calls on G7 data protection and privacy authorities to work together to overhaul cookie consent pop-ups.

Echoing the UK Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden’s aim for UK to get rid of "endless" cookie pop-ups, the ICO says that automatically selecting ‘I agree’ when presented with cookies pop-ups means there is no meaningful control over personal data.

UK Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham said:

“The cookie mechanism is also far from ideal for businesses and other organisations running websites, as it is costly and it can lead to poor user experience. While I expect businesses to comply with current laws, my office is encouraging international collaboration to bring practical solutions in this area.”

“There are nearly two billion websites out there taking account of the world’s privacy preferences. No single country can tackle this issue alone. That is why I am calling on my G7 colleagues to use our convening power. Together we can engage with technology firms and standards organisations to develop a coordinated approach to this challenge.”

Denham is to chair a virtual meeting with G7 privacy authorities today. Each G7 authority will present a specific technology or innovation issue where they believe closer cooperation is needed. In addition to data protection and privacy authorities from France, Germany, Italy, Canada, Japan and the UK at the meeting, there will also be participation by the United States’ Federal Trade Commission, the OECD and the World Economic Forum.

Since Brexit, the UK has been looking for new avenues to work with data protection colleagues globally as membership in the European Data Protection Board has terminated.