06 October 2010

IAB Europe condemns ‘re-spawning’ as an illegal marketing practice

(Press Release)
IAB Europe, the European association of online advertisers, has condemned the "re-spawning" of cookies, i.e. a practice of automatically re-establishing a previously deleted cookie. See also Flash Cookies and Privacy (Soltani, Canty, Mayo, Thomas and Hoofnagle). This is a pilot study of the use of 'Flash cookies' by popular websites. More than 50% of the sites in our sample are using flash cookies to store information about the user. Some are using it to 'respawn' or re-instantiate HTTP cookies deleted by the user. Privacy policies rarely disclose the presence of Flash cookies, and user controls for effectuating privacy preferences are lacking.