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Proposed EU Data Protection Laws Will Particularly Hurt European Online Businesses


05 Dec 2012



3rd annual IAB Europe CEO Outreach seeks to address concerns of European online companies 


Brussels 5th December 2012 – An IAB Europe delegation of CEO's from nine leading European online companies have converged in Brussels on 5-6 December for a series of meetings with high-level policy makers, including Cabinet members of Vice President of the European Commission, Neelie Kroes.


Concerns are running high in the European online media, research and advertising industry over proposed changes to the European Data Protection laws, which they say will result in new and wide ranging burdens for European online businesses. New limitations include, obtaining users' explicit consent for most data processing such as placing cookies or a prohibition for personalised services (called “profiling”). Contrary to global players that are strong B2C platforms, European players are mostly B2B companies. As such, they have no opportunity to obtain a user’s explicit consent easily. Thus European companies will be impacted much more than non-European companies.


“If the Commission's proposal is enacted as it stands, both European businesses and users alike would suffer: business would be driven to non-European platforms and users might have less choice as a result”, pointed out Alain Heureux, President and CEO IAB Europe.


“Europe’s online B2B sector primarily uses anonymous or pseudonymous consumer data. Even Germany’s strict privacy framework allows for such processing”, stated Kimon Zorbas, Vice President IAB Europe. “The IAB Europe fully supports the need to protect users but common sense should prevail. If online advertising is to support high-quality content creators, we need a more balanced approach that allows the use of pseudonymous data” concluded Zorbas




IAB Europe

Kimon Zorbas, Vice President: // +32 (0) 494 34 91 68

Bénédicte Blondel, Communications: // +32 (0) 2 526 55 74


About IAB Europe
IAB Europe ( is a federation of national Interactive Advertising Bureaux (IAB) across Europe. Its mission is to protect, prove, promote and professionalise the digital and interactive advertising industry in Europe. Supported by every major media group, advertisers, agency, portal, technology and service provider, its voice represents the interest of more than 5000 company members.

The member countries are Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Macedonia, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine and United Kingdom.

The corporate members include Adconion Media Group, Adition, Adobe, ADTECH, Alcatel-Lucent, AOL Advertising Europe, AudienceScience, BBC Advertising, CNN, CoAdvertise, comScore Europe, CPX Interactive, Creafi Online Media, Criteo, Deutsche Post, eBay International Advertising, Evidon, Expedia Inc, Fox Interactive Media, Gemius, Goldbach Media Group, Google, GroupM, Hi-Media, Koan, Microsoft Europe, Millward Brown, News Corporation,, Nielsen Online, OMD, Orange Advertising Network, PHD, Prisa, Publicitas Europe, Quisma, Sanoma Digital, Selligent, TradeDoubler, Triton Digital, United Internet Media, ValueClick, Verisign, Viacom International Media Networks, Webtrekk, White & Case, Yahoo!, Yandex and zanox. The associate members include Advance International Media, Banner, ePrivacyConsult, Emediate, NextPerformance, Right Media, Rocket Fuel, Tribal Fusion and Turn Europe.