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Wednesday, 2 May 2018

What is GDPR?



Businesses, large and small, are in the midst of preparing for compliance with the Europeans Union’s new data privacy laws: The General Data Protection Regulation, or the GDPR, which will go into effect on May 25, 2018.

What is it?


It was passed by the European lawmakers to create a harmonized data privacy law across all the EU member states. Its purpose is to:

  • Support privacy as a fundamental human right;
  • Require companies that handle personal data to be accountable for managing that data appropriately; and give individuals rights over how their personal data is processed or otherwise used.

In a nutshell, GDPR defines personal data as “any information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person.”

Okay, so what does that mean?


In addition to the kinds of information you might think about – name, address, email address, financial information, contact information, identification numbers, etc., personal data can in some cases be information related to your digital life, like an IP address, geolocation, browsing history, cookies, or other digital identifiers.

It also could mean information about a person, including their physical, mental, social, economic or cultural identities.

In short, if information can be traced back to or related in some way to an identifiable person, it is highly likely to be personal data.

Does it apply to me?


Individuals, companies, or businesses that have a presence in the EU or, if no presence, offer goods or services to, or monitor the behavior of, individuals in the EU need to comply with this law. Please consult with your own legal counsel about whether GDPR applies to you and your business.

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