Cookies and The EU Cookie Law

Posted in Glossary by Natasha Baldwin


Weโ€™re now into our third week of the A-Z of biscuits and Digital Marketing and are moving on to the letter 'C'. Our choice of biscuit this week is the American classic, the chocolate chip cookie.

The History
The first chocolate chip cookie was created by accident in America in the 1930's. Ruth Wakefield created the original recipe after trying to create chocolate butter biscuits (or cookies as they're called in America) by breaking up Nestle semi-sweet chocolate into the mixture. However, after baking the dough, she found that the chocolate didn't mix as she had thought it would and was left with what we now refer to as cookies. After sharing the recipe with local newspapers and becoming quite popular, Ruth made a deal with Nestle so they could put the recipe on their chocolate bar wrapper if they supplied her with free chocolate for the rest her life.
In the UK one of the most popular brands of cookies are the Maryland varieties. The recipe was brought to the UK from the US in 1956 and sells over 12 billion Maryland Cookies worldwide each year.


infographic showing how cookies are used on the web









However a not so delicious type of cookie has been the focus of the world wide web of late, after news of the introduction of the EU Cookie Law (less glamourously known as the EU Privacy Directive).

What's a cookie?

A web 'cookie' is a small text file stored by a web site on your computer to keep track of information about you and your browsing activity on that site. On 26th May 2012 all UK websites must give users the option to opt-in to cookies that record information about users. However, recent reports suggest that 95% of UK companies have yet to comply.

Nic explains what changes businesses face with the cookie law implementation and what you might need to do to make sure your site is compliant to the new regulations.

The whole area is vague and ambiguous, but the maximum penalty for non compliance is ยฃ500,000.

Your website almost certainly uses cookies already - definitely if it has a shopping cart or uses something like Google Analytics to analyse anonymous traffic data, then it uses cookies.

You can check to see what cookies your website employs using the Attacat Cookie Audit Tool for Chrome - or ask us to do it.

We know we're using two cookies - one for Google Analytics and one for WordPress (the platform this site in built on), but the water of the compliance pond is so muddy, even we're not sure what to do about it. Check out our cookie policy here and sign up to the newsletter (if you haven't already) and we'll keep you updated.


Natasha Baldwin
Natasha Baldwin

Creative Director at Noisy Little Monkey, Tash writes posts about pictures, strategy and pictures. She also blogs about pictures. Did we mention she likes pictures?

Meet Natasha Baldwin

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