ePrivacy refers to a set of regulations or laws that govern the protection of privacy and personal data in electronic communications. It aims to ensure that individuals have control over their personal data when using electronic communication services such as email, messaging apps, social media, and online browsing.

In effect since July 31, 2002.


The ePrivacy regulation or directive is typically seen as complementary to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Any organization that provides electronic communication services or uses electronic communications to process personal data may be subject to ePrivacy regulations. By ensuring that organizations are transparent about their data processing practices and that users have control over their data, ePrivacy regulations aim to create a more secure and trustworthy online environment. 

Key provisions of the ePrivacy:

  • Confidentiality of electronic communications: ePrivacy regulations typically require that electronic communications, including voice calls, text messages, and emails, be kept confidential;
  • Consent for cookies and similar tracking technologies: ePrivacy regulations generally require that website operators and other online service providers obtain users' consent before using cookies or similar tracking technologies that collect data about their online behavior. Users must be given clear and comprehensive information about the purpose of the data collection and must have the ability to opt-out of this collection;
  • Restrictions on unsolicited marketing messages: ePrivacy regulations often impose limits on the sending of unsolicited marketing messages, such as emails or text messages;
  • Protection of personal data: ePrivacy regulations aim to protect users' personal data when telecom operators, internet service providers, and other electronic communication providers are processing it. This may include requirements for data minimization, data security, and other measures to ensure that personal data is processed responsibly and transparently.

The exact provisions of ePrivacy can vary depending on the specific regulation or directive, as well as the country or region in which it applies.