"Companies and government need to realize far more needs to be done to make consent processes effective," says Assistant Professor Jonathan Obar of Toronto's York University, who authored the study. "The notice strategy right now is kind of a waste of time in the sense it’s not producing results. It’s a wonderful place to start, but a terrible place to finish."
Obar points to recent high profile web privacy suits like a recent Supreme Court case against Spokeo to illustrate his point.
On May 16, the highest court in the land sided with Spokeo who was sued by a Virginia man for disseminating his personal information, arguing the man failed to prove he was harmed in any meaningful way.
On June 27, a federal court ruled against a group of parents suing Google (goog) and Viacom (viab) for planting software cookies on their kids' computers, after a visit to Viacom's Nickelodeon website, to help create targeted ads.
"The companies and the government have to create new strategies for delivering terms of service to make sure people not only know what's going on, but have control," he adds.