The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will become effective in May of 2018, and it is going to have a huge impact on the way marketers conduct business in Europe. This set of regulations is designed to provide one overarching set of guidelines that everyone must follow. In theory, this is supposed to make it simpler to know what rules and regulations apply to a company regardless of where they are doing business in Europe.
In reality, however, there are still a lot of murky issues in the law, which makes it hard for marketers and advertisers to know what they need to do, and when. Larger companies are investing a significant amount into their legal departments to make sure they can follow the letter of the law going forward. Smaller firms and individuals, however, can’t usually afford this type of thing so they will be left to do their best to comply without any real clear guidelines in place.
Anyone who fails to comply with the rules set forth in the GDPR will be fine up to 4% of their annual global turnover.
Supporters of the regulations say that consumers will benefit from improved and standardized data protection being put in place. Those who oppose the regulations say that this will make it much more difficult for marketers to buy and display highly targeted advertising, which will leave consumers with a lower overall quality experience while online.
Anyone who is operating out of Europe, or does a significant amount of business there, will want to invest some time and money into understanding these new regulations before they take effect in May.