Party Time's Over: News Sites Cut Back On Third-Party Cookie Use Under GDPR

GDPR had a marked effect on data practices only two months in the last year — at least among news sites, according to an analysis by The Germany Eye, an English-language publication.

Of major EU countries, only Poland saw increases in use of third-party domains and cookies by news sites — 29% for the former and 20% for the latter, from April to July 2018, according to the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, as reported on Statista. 

In contrast, France registered a 16% reduction in third-party domains and a 32% reduction in third-party cookies used by such sites. . 

The UK saw an even more precipitous drop in third-party cookies — 45%, plus a 13% fall-off in third-party domains. Big declines in cookies also occurred in Spain (32%) and Italy (32%).

Germany, however, registered only a 6% decline in third-party cookies, perhaps because it was already tougher on them, and no change in domains. 



In addition, third-party domain falloffs were also seen in Spain (12%), Finland (8%) and Italy (4%).

Does this really reflect progress? Yes — it means that news websites across the EU “started abandoning third-party trackers and cookies” in that period, The Germany Eye reports.  

Up until then, it adds, "third-party trackers would run in the background without the user even noticing, but the GDPR supports a state of transparency with regard to the collection and processing of data from individuals."

The GDPR also has a bearing on email use by those sites.

Germany Eye says the GDPR has had a ripple effect in countries outside the EU. “

Many non-EU news sites "updated their websites to ask for consent from EU-based users wishing to visit their webpage, informing them on the collection of data and subsequent uses,” it writes.

Meanwhile, as already reported, the European Commission states that there have been over 95,000 GDPR complaints filed, along with over 41,500 breach notifications. 

Companies must report a breach within 72 hours of  discovering the incident, a standard that some U..S. companies fail to reach.

According to the EC, the complaints cover email, telemarketing and video surveillance. In addition, the EC is probing 255 cross-border violations. 

Of 23 EU member states, five had still not passed national legislation to enforce the GDPR at the time of this report.

The Germany Eye concludes, that “safeguarding the privacy of clients and protecting business data have become top priorities for both businesses and the general public, as news of data breaches and leaks continue to plague news headlines around the world.”



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