What Is The GDPR?

Posted in Social Media by Promote on 14-Aug-17

The internet of today is a very different place to how it was in years past; for example, social media. If your business is searching for a method of optimising their social media presence, consider a social media management or training service from Promote.

However, recently many people have been curious about social media and the data that these businesses collect. This is because in under a year's time, the new EU legislation the GDPR will become enforceable.

What Is The GDPR?

The GDPR, General Data Protection Regulation is a piece of EU legislation that updates existing data protection legislation. Currently in the United Kingdom our Data Protection laws are governed by The Data Protection Act 1998 which is nearly 20 years old.

The online world has drastically changed in the years since The Data Protection Act 1998. As such a new piece of legislation will come into place to protect and empower citizens of the European Union with regards to data privacy.

This piece of EU legislation will be enforced from the 25th of May 2018, which is approximately 7 months away. As such, it is very important that businesses are GDPR compliant. Failure to comply with the GDPR could result in very serious financial penalties.

What Has Changed?

Whilst some things such as the principles of data privacy still hold true from the previous EU directive, there have been many changes to the regulations. For example, thanks to the GDPR from May 2018 data subjects have additional rights. Some of them are as explained below: (Information from eugdpr.org)

  • Notification Of A Breach
    Thanks to the changes in the regulations if a data breach is likely to “result in a risk for the rights and freedoms of individuals" a breach notification is mandatory in all member states.

    This notification must occur within 72 hours of becoming aware of the breach. Additionally data processors are required to notify their customers after becoming aware of the breach.

  • Right To Be Forgotten
    This right entitles data subjects to have a data controller erase their personal data, cease further dissemination of said data and potentially have third parties stop processing the data.

    There are however some conditions, some of which include; the data no longer being relevant to the original purpose or the data subject withdrawing consent.


This list is not exclusive and the GDPR contains many changes to the previous directive. If you want to learn more about the GDPR and the rightsthat data subjects posses, you can learn more by visiting eugdpr.org.

What Does This Mean About Social Media?

Over the past years, social media websites such as Facebook have collected personal data about their users. For example when a business utilises a professional social media management service, photos and status updates are posted in order to interact with their customers. However the data collection doesn't stop there.

Social media often knows what adverts you click on, Facebook could even know much more information about you because your Facebook account can be used as ID on certain websites and apps. Businesses can follow you around on the internet, tracking you as you click; gathering information as you surf the web.

As written in a report on Sky News “even more than it is in the advertising business, Facebook is in the surveillance business."

Data Subjects Will Be Empowered

With the new legislation, data subjects will be empowered with new rights. You will be able to know what Facebook knows about you. However this will not be limited to merely what information you have provided them with.

As a data subject you will also be about to discover what conclusions the business has drawn from the data that they have collected. For example, if you request your data from Facebook, you'll be able to discover what data they have sold to advertisers in order to provide you with tailored advertising.

If you are uncomfortable with this data being held by the business, after May 2018, you will have the right to ask that the information be removed. This is known as either The Right To Be Forgotten or Right of Erasure.

With the changes to the way data is collected online, not only will people be able to request for personal data to be deleted; people must give their explicit consent before personal information can be collected online. Additionally, personal data will be expanded to include internet cookies and IP addresses. This means that the “opt-out" checkboxes that many have experienced will become a thing of the past.

What Are The Penalties For Failing To Comply?

In this article we previously mentioned that there will be serious financial penalties for those who fail to comply and breach users' privacy.

Under the new law, the United Kingdom will be able to fine companies 4% of their global turnover if they break the privacy of their users. If for example a business such as Google or Facebook breached the privacy of their users, this could potentially be billions of pounds.

As such, it is very important that businesses comply with these regulations.

Wait? Is The UK's Data Protection Bill Different From the EU's GDPR?

The UK's Data Protection Bill implements the GDPR in full, which means that the data can flow unhindered once Brexit has finished and the United Kingdom has left the European Union.

Remember, until the United Kingdom officially leaves the European Union, all EU laws and regulations continue to apply; this includes the GDPR. As such, it is very important that your business complies with this legislation.

Are You Confused About Social Media? Do You Need Assistance Managing Your Business's Accounts?

If you would like to take advantage of social media, but you're unsure how to best manage your business's social media accounts, the Promote team can help.

We have two services that may interest you, social media management and social media training.

- Social Media Management
If you're searching for a marketing agency to manage your social media accounts, this is the service for you. Our team will work hard to generate traffic and build a community around your brand identity.

- Social Media Training
If you want to learn more about using social media to market your own business and grow your brand, our training courses can teach you the fundamentals regarding social media marketing. You can learn more about our training courses by visiting our page regarding social media training .

Social Media Management And Training From Promote

If you're interested in learning more about our social media services, or if you would like to make an enquiry, please don't hesitate to get in touch with our friendly team.

You can give our team a call on 0845 050 2500, our lines are open Monday to Friday between the hours of 9.00am to 5.30pm. However if you would prefer to contact us online you can do so in the following ways:

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