France’s data protection authority has launched a programme to help determine whether specific audience measurement solutions are exempt from collecting user’s prior consent.

The Commission Nationale de L’informatique et des Libertés (CNIL) is inviting suppliers to submit information about their audience measurement products to the authority using a standard form.

The CNIL will then assess, solely on the information in the form, whether the product is exempt from prior consent

“The objective is to identify whether the available configuration elements can allow the suppliers concerned to offer their customers an audience measurement offer exempt from the collection of consent,” said CNIL

“This approach does not prejudge the compliance with the regulations of audience measurement solutions without obtaining consent which would not be identified at this stage by the CNIL.”

If the provider’s solution is validated CNIL will list the solution and its configuration guide on a dedicate dpage on its website. The provider can also publish a sentence on its website saying it has participated in the evaluation process.

If the solution is not validated it will be up to the provider to develop a revised solution and submit new documentation.

In general CNIL considers the use of an audience measurement solution “must be strictly necessary for the proper functioning and day-to-day administration of the website or application.”

It said the following measures are strictly necessary for the proper administration of a site:

  • audience measurement, page by page and aggregated (generally hourly or less frequently);
  • the list of pages from which a link has been followed to request the current page (sometimes called a “referrer”) whether internal or external to the site, by page and aggregated on a daily basis;
  • the types of terminal, browser and screen size of visitors, per page and aggregated on a daily basis;
  • page load time statistics, per page and aggregated on an hourly basis;
  • statistics of time spent on each page, bounce rate, scroll depth, per page and aggregated on a daily basis;
  • statistics on user actions (click, selection), by page and aggregated on a daily basis;
  • ·statistics on the geographical area of origin of the requests, by page and aggregated on a daily basis

The programme is open to providers of solutions for websites hosted in France or whose users are residents. The deadline for submissions is June 30.

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