You’ve heard of GDPR, but what about PECR?

Paul Hunt

January 29, 2018

Paul Hunt is a marketing consultant

What is it with regulation and acronyms? GDPR has grabbed many headlines over the last few months and rightly so, but less has been written about the changes to the existing Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR).

Basically, the regulations give people specific privacy rights in relation to electronic communications and there are specific rules on (amongst other things):

  • marketing calls, emails, texts and faxes;
  • cookies (and similar technologies).

It is based on the EU ePrivacy Directive, it was implemented across the EU and it applies stricter rules on electronic marketing communications than other channels, e.g. consent must be opt-in.

You would hope that the authorities would co-ordinate regulation, but of course they don’t as its  expected implementation is in 2019.

The primary concern with PECR is consent on websites and how to replace the cookie pop-up. The favoured route is via web browser settings which could offer consumers a choice of levels of privacy.

The effect of this could be dramatic, as individual consent for cookies could affect online advertising revenues and could significantly reduce free content on the web and be bad for consumers.

For those of you who are avid visitors to Mail Online, over 65 cookies are dropped on this site, so would you be prepared to pay in the future?

I am sure you’ll hear more about PECR once the GDPR implementation has settled down, but why not ask your website providers now?

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