As regulators across the world continue to increase their focus on the use of cookies and other similar devices for targeted advertising, we are seeing an increasing amount of regulation that, either directly or indirectly, governs the use of these technologies, often (but not always) following a similar path to that historically set by the EU within the GDPR, ePrivacy Directive (and forthcoming Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulation).

Common themes unsurprisingly include transparency and consent requirements, with cookie banners (including consent management platforms) being an increasingly frequent sight across the globe. In EMEA, we are also seeing an increasing number of individual complaints from data subjects and privacy activists, leading to a greater focus than ever on cookie-related compliance from data protection authorities.

To aid business leaders in their use of these technologies, we are pleased to announce publication of the second edition of our Global Cookie Review. This updated report is the second of a regular series providing a global overview of the legal and regulatory landscape relating to the use of cookies and similar technologies. This report will continue to be regularly updated with new developments and trends, together with analysis of additional territories.

This second edition has expanded to include new jurisdictions. This includes an increase in European countries covered and key markets in Latin America, plus the UAE, India and South Africa. Our expanded scope reflects the ever-increasing geographical scope of regulatory concern and focus on cookies and similar tracking technologies.

In this edition, some of the key areas we cover include:

  • Key legal frameworks across the globe;
  • Answers to some of the big questions for businesses looking to make use of these technologies; and
  • Considerations about the use of these technologies in the context of adtech

In relation to the last point, cookies and similar technologies are very commonly used as part of targeted advertising through the use of adtech. Globally, adtech as a sector is under increasing scrutiny from regulators and, as such, provision, and use of adtech comes with additional considerations, whether relating to cookies or more broadly. We are also seeing seismic shifts in the industry on the horizon, driven by commercial changes throughout the ecosystem. As such, we have specifically included notes on the use of these technologies in an adtech context and we anticipate significant additional considerations to be addressed in future issues of this report. Recent high-profile decisions such as the APD ruling regarding IAB Europe’s TCF standard continue to create uncertainty in the use of cookies in Europe, particularly in the adtech space – the questions referred to the CJEU from the appeal of this decision could have a particularly significant impact on the sector.