Passed two years ago, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is poised to reshape how companies, regardless of location, collect personal data for uses that include advertising. Such information includes birth dates, political affiliations, and television viewing habits.
This translates into a few major steps, according to Nick Couldry, a media and communications professor at the London School of Economics and Political Science. First, companies will be required to alert EU users when they are collecting data and the reason for it. “You have to be told why I’m collecting the data, basically what I’m going to do,” he says.’
The GDPR also stipulates that alerts for users must be expressed in ordinary, nontechnical language – not in dense columns of legalese. In addition, EU consumers will have the “right to be forgotten,” which will allow them to have their personal data removed from any company whenever they choose.