So, what is GDPR and does it mean anything for your business?
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a legal framework that sets guidelines for the collection and processing of personal information of individuals within the European Union (EU). GDPR came into effect across the EU on May 25, 2018.
So as result companies from Europe regardless of where they are doing business have been updating their Privacy Policies and Data Collection policies to meet these guidelines. We have received lots of updates from Joomla and WordPress Extensions in the last few weeks clarifying their changes and compliance which is a good thing because it means your website is now using software that complies with GDPR
So how does this affect us here in the USA?
Well, you may be in the USA, but your website is accessible worldwide. That means folks from the European Union can visit your site, send you inquiries or purchase products off your site. Moreover, the new GDPR guidelines state that if the person visiting your website is in the European Union when they are visiting your website, then they are covered by this regulation for general inquiry and data collection. There must be some form of solicitation by the company to European Citizens (in other words enticing EU visitors to provide their information for a specific marketing purpose).
The GDPR guideline also states that ANY collection of financial transaction information is covered and protected, so any company selling product worldwide is most likely affected by these new laws.
A good outcome identified to me is how the laws improve the speed of websites loading. When you visit a website, and they are bombarding you with visitor tracking software the sites load much slower. Now with the GDPR guidelines, websites have less visitor tracking software and thus load quicker! So primarily GDPR provides better privacy for website visitors and faster websites
This sounds like a pretty good deal to us!
US companies that will be most affected by these new regulations are U.S.-based hospitality, travel, software services, and e-commerce companies will undoubtedly have to take a closer look at their online marketing practices. However, any U.S. company that has identified a market in an EU country and has localized web content should consider reviewing their web operations and what they do with visitor data.
For any company that would like to review your current privacy statements and privacy guidelines, make sure to contact us, and we can discuss your specific setup to make sure you are compliant and in good shape with GDPR.