All US government agencies have been instructed to cease using cookies to track website visitors and ad exposures, leaving the sites with little or no data on traffic or ad viewings.

The decree by the Office of Management & Budget will result in the government spending millions of dollars in public service web ads – for example anti-drug campaigns and military recruitment – with scant information about who sees the ads or visits the sites.

Without the cookies, say web advertising specialists, government web campaigns will have only limited and complex methods for tracking reach and frequency. According to the OMB directive, only when there is a "compelling" need will the use of cookies be permitted.

News source: Advertising Age - Interactive Daily