16 July, 2020
The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has ruled that any cloud services hosted in the US are incapable of complying with the GDPR and EU Privacy laws. There are no internet privacy laws and/or regulations in the USA which is the reason for following what happens with the CJEU.
For any business operating a website in the EU or if you have traffic coming to your website from EU visitors, you need to know what data you’re capturing and where this data is being stored.
With the CJEU invalidating the Privacy Shield framework, this further challenges the privacy standards of big software corporations like Google and Microsoft as they have servers located in the US while attracting customers from all over the world.
From our understanding, these corporations will now face on-going and heavy fines if they continue to process EU data on these US cloud servers.
NEXT STEPS ....
#A. Is your website, using Google Analytics? If so you must ask for consent from everyone who visits your website. If you don’t, you could be liable to privacy law infringements and face being fined for not complying with the GDPR. That consent needs to be:.
1. Freely given (the user must have a choice to not give consent and be able to opt out at any time).
2. Informed (you need to disclose who is processing the data, what data is processed and how to opt out)
3. Specific (consent is only valid for the specific informed purpose)
4. Unambiguous (for example, pre-ticked boxes or similar aren’t allowed)
Those four characteristics invalidate 99% of all "cookie notices" you see today on USA websites. If users don’t give you consent, you are not allowed to track them using Google Analytics or any other US based cloud solution.
#B. Replace Google Analytics with program not based in USA. Matomo Analytics is one I have begun using; its' servers are based in Germany. Matomo satisfies CJEU privacy shield requirements.
I will keep you posted on these privacy regulations as they take place..
EU: European Union
GDPR: General Data Protection Regulation