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Cookiebot

The GDPR/ePR and CCPA affect how your WordPress site may use cookies to track visitors from Europe and California. Cookiebot also comes as a WordPress plugin.

 

Try our free compliance test to check if your website’s use of cookies and online tracking is GDPR/ePR compliant.

WordPress, cookies, plugins and GDPR: What’s the deal?

Updated January 13, 2020.


What does the GDPR and CCPA mean for your WordPress website and its use of cookies?

In this article, we give you the answers and tell you about our Cookiebot WordPress plugin for GDPR and CCPA compliance that is in use on more than 40.000 WordPress sites across the world.


Cookiebot WordPress plugin


Cookiebot offers a WordPress plugin that makes your website fully GDPR/ePR and CCPA compliant.

Using Cookiebot’s WordPress plugin enables a highly customizable consent banner to handle consents and empower users with the option to opt in and out of cookie categories, as required by the GDPR/ePR, CCPA and similar data privacy laws around the world.

Cookiebot scans your website to find all cookies and similar tracking technologies, then automatically blocks all until your users choose which categories of cookies to activate.

Our cookie declaration includes the option for a Do Not Sell My Personal Information link – offering full compliance with the GDPR/ePR and CCPA.


Try Cookiebot’s WordPress plugin for free


WordPress and cookies


WordPress is a hugely popular website management tool. You might yourself use WordPress as a tool for your website.

If you do, you might be wondering: does my WordPress site use cookies? And is it compliant with the GDPR and CCPA?

Well, it depends on how you use WordPress and how it is set up.

A clean version of the WordPress code without plugins doesn't set any user related cookies. It only sets cookies when a site admin logs into the backend of the system. In this case, you don't need a cookie consent on your website, as there are no cookies.

But very few people use WordPress in its basic form. Once you start to install plugins on your site, you either need to check the plugins to ensure that they don’t set cookies, or you need to implement a cookie consent function on your site.

Most hosted versions of WordPress set cookies per default, such as WordPress sites hosted on WordPress.com.

Hence, we recommend that you always use a cookie consent solution to ensure that you comply with data privacy laws like GDPR, ePR and CCPA.

You can try our free compliance test if you are in doubt about what cookies are in use on your site.


GDPR and WordPress

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the ePrivacy Directive are two EU-wide initiatives for the protection of personal data.

They mean that you have to take measures to ensure that your website meets the requirements and is compliant with the regulations.

Otherwise, you risk heavy GDPR fines of up to €20 million, or 4% of the organization's global yearly turnover, whichever is higher.

Basically, what you have to do is to go through your data processing activities and revise how the user data is handled on your website.

Websites typically manage data by means of cookies and online tracking technologies.

Be aware that you are responsible not only for the data handled directly by you and your site, but also for that which is handled by any third parties in use on your site.

Most sites make use of some kind of third parties.

For example, social media buttons, embedded videos, and tools for analytics all are data-gathering third parties on your website.

The GDPR primarily affects your cookie notice, cookie consent and your privacy policy.

The EU regulations are complex. Luckily, there exists a GDPR WordPress plugin that ensures that your website meets the requirements of the GDPR and other applicable laws and regulations and complies in one single stroke regarding everything that has to do with cookies and online tracking.


CCPA and WordPress

The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) is a state-wide privacy law that regulates how businesses all over the world are allowed to handle the personal information of California residents.

It took effect on January 1, 2020.

CCPA requires that a website notify visitors of the categories of personal information that it collects and for what purposes.

This must be done at or before the point of collection. The list of categories of personal information must include all that a business collects, sells or discloses and it must be updated every 12 months.

Websites must also update their website’s privacy policy to include a description of the CCPA consumer rights –

According to the CCPA, websites must feature a Do Not Sell My Personal Information link that consumers can use to opt out of having their data sold to third parties.


Is my WordPress website GDPR/ePR and CCPA compliant? 


Try our free test and get an idea whether your WordPress site is GDPR/ePR and CCPA compliant.

The free website audit scans five pages of your website and sends you a report of the cookies and online tracking on these pages, including information on their provenance, purpose and whether or not they are compliant.

If you want a complete overview of the cookies and online tracking going on on all of your website, sign up to the Cookiebot solution.


GDPR and CCPA compliant WordPress cookie policies


To be compliant with the GDPR when using WordPress, you must ensure that you:

Inform your users:

Provide a clear and specific information on the cookies in use on the site, what types of data are processed, for what purpose and where in the world they are sent.

Get prior consent:

Ask for consent before setting cookies. Only strictly necessary cookies may be set prior to the reception of the consent.

Document:

Keep record of all received consents as evidence that the cookie consent has been given.

Protect the data:

Ensure that all personal data is securely stored. Only transmit data to the EU and other GDPR adequate countries.

Give your users a true choice:

Make sure that your users have the possibility to see the cookies, select, accept and reject them. The site must function even though the user has rejected cookies.

Provide the option for your users to change their mind:

Give access for the users to see and change their choice of accepted and rejected cookies on your site. If the user so requests, you must be able to erase their data.

Alert:

In the case of a GDPR breach, alert securities and affected users within 72 hours.

Also check out the nice infographic by the EU explaining the GDPR in plain language and what the regulation means for your business.


CCPA compliance on WordPress

To be compliant with the CCPA when using WordPress, you must ensure that you:

Enable opt-out

Feature a Do Not Sell My Personal Information link on the website that users can use to opt-out of third party data sales.

Inform your users of what you collect and sell

Provide a notice at or before the point of collection informing the consumer of the categories of personal information that the company collects and for what purpose.

Stop selling personal information if requested

React to an opt-out request within 15 days by stopping further selling and notifying all parties to whom it has sold the personal information in the previous 90 days.

Delete personal information if requested

Include two steps whereby the consumer can submit the request and subsequently agree to the personal information to be deleted.

Get opt-in from minors

If users are under the age of 16, you must obtain their opt-in consent before selling their personal information. If users are under the age of 13, opt-in consent from parents or legal guardians are required.


Cookiebot WordPress plugin

Cookiebot's WordPress plugin is an easy way to make the use of cookies etc. on your website compliant with the GDPR and CCPA.

Cookiebot is one of the only fully GDPR and ePrivacy directive compliant cookie solutions on the market.

It is based on years of thorough research on the regulations and ensures full compliance and full control at a fair price.

The experience is user-friendly and transparent for both you as a website owner and for your users.



Cookiebot's WordPress plugin for GDPR and CCPA compliance.

A GDPR compliant cookie banner by Cookiebot.




Cookiebot WordPress plugin for GDPR and CCPA compliance.

A CCPA compliant cookie declaration by Cookiebot.



Try Cookiebot's WordPress plugin for free


List of cookies on my WordPress site


The cookies in use vary from site to site, also depending on what plugins are in use and where the site is hosted. Generally speaking, WordPress sites may use the following:

Strictly Necessary Cookies:

For example authentication cookies, used to know whether the user is logged in or not.

Preference Cookies:

Stores preferences set by users such as account name, language, location, and whether the user has chosen to view the mobile version of a site.

Statistics Cookies:

Collects information on how users interact with websites hosted on WordPress, including what pages are visited most, as well as other analytical data. These details are used to improve the performance of the website’s functions.

Marketing/Tracking Cookies:

Used to target the advertising to visitors on WordPress sites, as well as to track the volume of visitors. They track details about visitors such as the number of unique visitors, number of times particular ads have been displayed, the number of clicks the ads have received, and are also used to measure the effectiveness of ad campaigns by building up detailed user profiles. These kinds of cookies are set by trusted third party networks, and are generally persistent in nature.

Cookies set by Third Parties/Embedded Content:

Sites hosted on WordPress make use of different third party applications and services to enhance the experience of website visitors. These include social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter (through the use of sharing buttons), or embedded content from YouTube and Vimeo. As a result, cookies may be set by these third parties, and used by them to track your online activity.

Web beacons and other tracking technologies:

Both websites and HTML e-mails may also contain other tracking technologies such as ‘web beacons’. These are typically small transparent images that provide WordPress with statistics, for similar purposes as cookies. They are often used in conjunction with cookies, though they are not stored on your computer in the same way. As a result, if you disable cookies, the web beacons may still load, but their functionality will be restricted.


Cookie checker: How can I check the cookies on my WordPress website?

Find out what cookies are in use on your WordPress site, where they come from and what purpose they serve by taking an audit of your website.

The free audit scans five pages of your website and sends you a report of the cookies and online tracking on these pages, including information on their provenance, purpose and whether or not they are compliant.

If you want a complete overview of the cookies and online tracking going on on all of your website, sign up to the Cookiebot solution.


GDPR and CCPA compliant WordPress cookie policies


Your cookie policy can be written as a part of your overall privacy policy.

Your cookie policy should contain:

The cookie policy may be written as a part of the website’s privacy policy.

You may check out the WPbeginners guide on how to add a privacy policy in WordPress.


Examples of WordPress cookie policies

You can find many examples and templates for your cookie policy on the internet.

Keep in mind, however, that your policy should be revised and updated regularly, to make sure that it informs about the actual cookies in use on your site.


FAQ


What is a WordPress cookie banner?

A WordPress cookie banner is a banner, that shows up on a website the first time a user visits it.

The purpose of a GDPR and CCPA compliant cookie banner is to inform visitors about the use of cookies and get consent from the user before setting all but strictly necessary cookies, and to enable users to opt out of having their personal information sold to third parties.

Cookiebot enables full compliance with both the GDPR and CCPA through our consent banner.


What is a cookie notice?

A cookie notice is a notification on a website, informing the visitor on the use of cookies.

The GDPR requires that all users should not only be informed about the specific cookies in use, but given a real choice to opt in and out of them.

The CCPA requires websites to feature a Do Not Sell My Personal Information link, so users can opt-out of having their personal information sold.

Cookiebot offers a highly customizable banner that features all of the above.


What are the cookie requirements for WordPress Free domains?

Any site that uses cookies must comply with the GDPR and CCPA.

Most WordPress Free domains make use of cookies for various purposes, and are therefore subject to the regulations.

In short:

Provide clear and specific information about data types and purpose of the cookies. Keep a full documentation of all given consents. Give your users the possibility to reject superfluous cookies and still use the website. Give your users the possibility of withdrawing their consent whenever they want.

Check out our Cookiebot plugin for WordPress, which is one of the few GDPR and CCPA compliant solutions out there.


What does it mean that your WordPress website is hosted?

If your WordPress website is hosted, it simply means that it is stored on a server from which it can be accessed by your users.

That being said, there is a great number of web hosts to choose from, offering a vast variety of more or less rich hosting environments, features and services for your WordPress site for different prices and pricing models.

Almost all WordPress websites are hosted, either by WordPress.com or by another third-party hosting service such as e.g. HostPapa WordPress Hosting.

Whichever you might have or choose, be aware that also the web host generally sets cookies on your users' browsers via your website, and take measures in order to be compliant and protect your users' privacy accordingly. 

Check your WordPress website's cookies and tracking with our free cookie checker tool


What should a WordPress cookie notice or warning contain?

A cookie notice or warning should contain specific information about the cookies in use on the website, including cookies and other online tracking technologies set by third parties, in order to be GDPR compliant.

In order to be CCPA compliant, it must include a Do Not Sell My Personal Information link for users to opt out of third party data sales.

The cookie notice should also inform about the types of cookies in use, their provenance and purpose, and provide your users with the possibility to opt in and out.

Remember, also, that the notice should be given before any cookies are set (except for strictly necessary ones), and that the cookies are not allowed before the user has given their consent to it.


Resources


WordPress' information on the use of cookies

The General Data Protection Regulation

California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA)

The ePrivacy Directive

Cookiebot plugin for WordPress sites

Check if your website complies with the GDPR and the ePrivacy Directive

Data Protection - Better rules for small businesses

GDPR Fines

GDPR adequate countries

Cookiebot Plans and pricin

HostPapa Review

WP beginners: How to choose the best WordPress hosting in 2019 (compared)

WPbeginners guide on how to add a privacy policy in WordPress

Blogpost: Cookies and WordPress: How to Set, Get and Delete

New CCPA configuration 

Cookiebot offers CCPA compliance!

 

 

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