Regulator looking at firms unfair use of your cookies
It is thought, for example, that some customers may be charged more than others, simply because of their browsing habits or, possibly, the fact that they have a Mac rather than a PC.
The Office of Fair Trading is gathering more information to see if this is the case. We suspect certain airlines to get slapped with fines, mentioning no names, especially given that there's the idea that people have cleared their cookies and found the price of flights being cheaper than if they hadn't.
Naturally, cookies aren't all bad. Sometimes your loyalty to a retailer sees you getting cheaper deals, but if prices are being changed per customer, someone needs to look at it, and hard.
"Innovation online is an important driver of economic growth. Our call for information forms part of our ongoing commitment to build trust in online shopping so that consumers can be confident that businesses are treating them fairly," said Clive Maxwell, OFT chief executive.
"We know that businesses use information about individual consumers for marketing purposes. This has some important potential benefits to consumers and firms. But the ways in which data is collected and used is evolving rapidly."
"It is important we understand what control shoppers have over their profile and whether firms are using shoppers' profiles to charge different prices for goods or services. This call for information will help us understand these practices better and to decide whether or not this is an issue on which the OFT needs to take any action."