France's privacy watchdog warns companies over ad cookie rules

PARIS, May 25 (Reuters) - France’s data privacy watchdog on Tuesday urged around twenty companies and public institutions to bring their practices on online advertising trackers (cookies) in line with French law.

The CNIL said that companies’ French websites must make refusing advertising cookies as easy as accepting them.

The watchdog added that international digital groups and public institutions were among those targeted by its warning, although it did not give any names.

The companies and public institutions targeted have to comply with the rules within one month, the CNIL said.

The regulator in December handed out its biggest ever fine of 100 million euros ($122.51 million) to Alphabet’s Google for breaching the country’s rules on advertising cookies.

It also fined e-commerce giant Amazon 35 million euros for breaking the same rules. ($1 = 0.8163 euros) (Reporting by Gwenaelle Barzic and Matthieu Protard; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)