January 6, 2006
Government Cookies Show Up Even When Prohibited
Then came word that the White House web site used web bugs (one pixel graphics) along with third party cookies from WebTrends. David Almacy, the White House Internet director noted that the data from both were not used together and therefore not illegal. The web bugs are not covered by guidelines and the cookies were not really from a government server. In any event, "tracking" did not occur.
Now comes word that various congressional web sites, including several that have explicit notes that they do not collect cookie data in fact do so. Among 66 congressional sites are those of John McCain, Harry Reid, and Ted Stevens. McCain has been an outspoken advocate for privacy rules including those covering cookies. When asked about these discrepancies, most webmasters offered variations on the "unintentional" theme. Many congressional sites are created with Cold Fusion and cookies seem to be turned on by default until someone awkwardly discovers them and turns them off.
Advice: Visit a government web site and check your cache to see if you have any unwanted government crumbs.
January 6, 2006 | Permalink
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