The new rules will allow users more control of their settings, providing an easy way to accept or refuse the tracking of cookies and other identifiers in case of privacy risks.
Mark Thompson, global privacy advisory lead at KPMG, comments on the European Commission’s proposal for new legislation on stronger privacy in electronic communications. He said:
“This proposal is the next step for EU regulators as they attempt to ensure that personal data is adequately protected and that users have increased control over how their personal data is collected, used, retained and disclosed.
"For consumers, it means more control over the use of personal data. For businesses, the proposal will be felt in a spectrum of different ways.
“However, businesses that fall under increased consent requirements - where users are required to take action to allow cookie usage before information can be collected, in certain circumstances, are likely to face some challenges. The new rules will allow users more control of their settings, providing an easy way to accept or refuse the tracking of cookies and other identifiers in case of privacy risks.
“Businesses involved in personal data rich tracking services, are potentially going to face even greater challenges and need to start thinking about how they can increase transparency and build trust with individuals who use their services. The broad scope of this legislation also has the potential to impact other service providers whose businesses rely on gathering and analysing information processed by ‘terminal devices’ like phones and laptops.
“For organisations that are trusted by individuals and are perceived to deliver a high level of reward for sharing their personal data, the changes will potentially hand them a key business advantage due the likelihood of individuals consenting to them processing their personal data. On the flipside, for those organisations who are not trusted or who are perceived to offer a low value exchange, we could see significant reduction in the individuals who permit them to processes their personal data. This could potentially undermine the use of these services, the organisations turnover and eventually market value.
“Organisations will need to starting thinking about if are they are impacted and how to respond as soon as possible.”
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Notes to Editors:
KPMG LLP, a UK limited liability partnership, operates from 22 offices across the UK with approximately 13,500 partners and staff. The UK firm recorded a revenue of £2.07 billion in the year ended 30 September 2016. KPMG is a global network of professional firms providing Audit, Tax, and Advisory services. It operates in 152 countries and has 189,000 professionals working in member firms around the world. The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative ("KPMG International"), a Swiss entity. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such.