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THE WHITE HOUSE

Office of the Press Secretary


For Immediate Release
June 21, 2000

STATEMENT BY THE PRESS SECRETARY

Today, White House officials learned for the first time from the Office of National Drug Control Policy about certain practices by ONDCP contractors that could result in the collection of information about consumers and their Internet use. The practices involve the use of "cookies" - small bits of software placed on the hard drive of Internet users - in order to determine which Internet advertisements are seen by website users. Cookies can also be used to collect personal data about website users.

We will take all steps necessary to halt these practices now. Specifically, ONDCP will halt the use of "cookies" on its behalf. At no time has ONDCP requested or received any personally identifiable information based on the use of "cookies." ONDCP has directed its contractors to destroy any data held by contractors and gathered through the use of "cookies."

Federal policy states that the White House and agency web sites must have clearly posted privacy policies, and we will comply with those policies. In addition, we are committed to making sure that contractors of federal sites fully and completely meet those same standards.

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