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Links to external sites

Link to pages that provide high-quality content that is different from the information on your page but relevant to it.

The Commission is not legally responsible for the content of the sites we link to, but their quality, content and tone should not reflect badly on us.


Do link to pages that

  • deal with an issue, policy or outside organisation in greater depth than is appropriate on EUROPA;
  • are relevant and useful to a wide audience;
  • are authoritative, accurate and up-to-date;
  • are open to the public (no password-protected sites);
  • are representative - if your page covers a range of countries, organisations or languages, then your links should too.

Do not link to pages that

  • are primarily commercial – i.e. that carry paying advertisements, or are chiefly concerned with sales;
  • are offensive – e.g. contain hate speech, incite discrimination or are otherwise likely to cause grave offence;
  • contain misleading information or unsubstantiated claims.

If in doubt do not link. The EUROPA team reserves the right to disallow or remove any such links.


Good practice

  • Verify the content before and during linking. Remove the link when the site is no longer relevant or no longer in line with original objective of the link.
  • Check that the sites you link to have credible privacy policies that guarantee compliance with relevant privacy laws.
  • Link to a site only if you are confident that the site-owner would not object to the link. Obtain permission if possible. If they do object, remove the link immediately.
  • Do not link to Word or PDF documents on other sites, but only to HTML web pages.
  • Use plain text links instead of images or logos. If you want to enrich the text link with an icon or the official logo of your partners or social network pages, you must ensure the image fully comply with the legal requirements of the branding or registered trademark. The overall look and feel should not give the impression that EU institutions endorse, support or make publicity of commercial brands (e.g. enormous or manipulated logos of primarily commercial companies).
  • Users should be able to identify external links before they click on them. If this is not self-evident from the link text, then make it explicit, e.g. by placing all outside links in a separate list:

          External links:
          Millennium development goals (United Nations)

  • Do not open outbound links in a new browser window. In order to enhance the user experience and to be in-line with usability standards, please ensure that all links open in the same browser window.