Dutch Regulator Issues Opinion on Prohibition of “Cookie Walls”

The Dutch Data Protection Authority issued an opinion stating that websites that block the access of users that do not consent to install cookies, violate European data protection regulations. The opinion was published after receiving many complaints and explained that tracking behavior on the web using a cookies or similar technology is currently the most extensive personal data processing activity. 

Since users do not have a free and equivalent alternative in which they can refuse to accept cookies and still have full access to content, the “cookie wall” practice forces users to consent to the use of their personal information for targeted advertising purposes. The consent obtained cannot therefore be considered free-will consent as required under Article 7(4) of the GDPR. The regulator issued letters to infringing organizations with instructions and declared its intention to increase enforcement on this matter in the near future. 

CLICK HERE to read the Dutch DPA’s opinion (in Dutch).