Kroes calls for action on do-not-track at W3C meeting

Digital agenda commissioner Neelie Kroes has called for a workable 'do-not-track' privacy standard at the opening of a World Wide Web Consortium meeting in Brussels.The meeting, which began on Tuesday, will last three days.

Digital agenda commissioner Neelie Kroes has called for a workable 'do-not-track' privacy standard at the opening of a World Wide Web Consortium meeting in Brussels.

The meeting, which began on Tuesday, will last three days. It will concentrate on progress made by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) body on privacy standards that will enable web users to avoid tracking for marketing purposes (do-not-track).

"Do-not-track today is still an aspiration rather than a reality," said Kroes. "And that is why I have called for agreement on a do-not-track standard by June of this year. I am happy that work on this is proceeding in the World Wide Web Consortium. But we need to act fast to turn do-not-track into a reality for all web users."

In June 2011, Kroes told web companies that they must agree on a do-not-track standard by June 2012, or face intervention by the European Commission.

Echoing her June 2011 statement, Kroes told the W3C meeting on Tuesday that the do-not-track standard needs to allow user control of data, and have the flexibility to cope with differing legal frameworks.

"When providers receive do-not-track signals from their users, how they need to respond may be different depending on whether the user is in Europe, the US or wherever," said Kroes. "So the system will need to adapt flexibly, depending on the jurisdiction in question."

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