Monday, March 28, 2011

Consultation on implementation of Telecoms Reform Package

There are just a few days left if you wish to comment on the Department of Communications proposals for implementation of the Telecoms Reform Package.

While there's quite a lot contained in the five sets of proposed regulations, the portions of most interest to me are the proposals regarding the revised E-Privacy Directive (.doc) which will implement a requirement for data breach notification along with new rules regarding cookies.

Curiously enough, there hasn't been much public debate in Ireland about the impact of the new rules regarding cookies - unlike the UK, where a similar implementation (which essentially copies and pastes text directly from the Directive) has been particularly controversial. This may be because the proposed Irish text is more business friendly in explicitly stating that browser settings can be used to show that users consent to cookies. However, it's still not entirely clear from the draft regulations whether this means that the technically unsavvy user will be taken to have consented where they fail to adjust their browser settings from what is (usually) the default "accept all cookies" option. (The Article 29 Working Party, for example, have taken the view that failure to adjust default settings does not amount to an affirmative consent.)

Update: The Department has now confirmed that it has extended the deadline for submissions to 15 April.

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