Is Your WooCommerce Store Ready for the GDPR Update?
Blue Whale Media have recently been informed of the upcoming GDPR update, as a web design agency that cares, we feel it is our obligation to inform you about what exactly this means.
The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into effect 156 days from now (but who’s counting right?). On 25th of May 2018, online storefronts that are not in compliance with the outlined regulations set out by the EU will be harshly penalised with up to 4% of global revenue being potentially fined.
E-store owners out there with UK based stores may be considering whether they really need to be in compliance with EU laws after article 50 is rolled out. Even after Brexit is triggered and Britain leaves the EU, any store that receives data from European based visitors has to be within the GDPR guide lines or face the penalty.
Even if a website is located as remote as China and receives just a handful of EU visitors, it can still be penalised for failing to withhold GDPR standards.
So I guess you must be wondering what GDPR is at this point?
GDPR- What Does It Mean?
GDPR, in its simplest terms is a stricter set of rules regarding data protection. When visitors reach a website, they share data with it simply by accessing the page. Not everyone is aware of the fact their personal data is being shared and the GDPR legislation seeks to remedy this.
The main components of the GDPR regulations are:
- When a user reaches your website, you must tell them exactly who you are.
- When required, get a clear consent before collecting any type of data.
- Allow users to access their own data and give them option to take it with them.
- Give users the option to delete their data from your website.
- If a breach does occur, you must inform the user of said breach.
Each of these regulations are subject to degrees and circumstance but they are the basic principles of the GDPR ruling.
Ensuring that all of these components are in place and working to the required degree, is no small task and requires the help of a web design agency that employs dedicated designers as well as developers.
What Is Personal Data?
Personal Data can be any kind of data that allows for a person to be directly or indirectly identified. This may be a name, an address, an IP address or bank/account details.
This type of data should only ever be accessed with the user’s permission, which is why the GDPR legislation requires websites to request permission before attaining data.
Why is GDPR Happening Now?
The sad reality and answer to this question is that we live in times of great insecurity where data is concerned. Between July 2014 and June 2015, a year before the adoption of GDPR, there were 404,000 reported cases of unauthorised access to personal information in the UK. Even before factoring in the unreported cases, this number is astronomical and downright frightening.
Given the rise in the sharing of data online and cybercrime, it does seem unsettling that the latest EU data protection regulation was in 1995, with the UK’s current Data Protection Act being passed in 1998. Realistically, this update to security should have happened a long time ago.
The GDPR ruling was officially adopted on the 27th April 2016 but was given a two year transition period. Time is beginning to run out for website owners that still need to get their sites prepared for GDPR and therefore Blue Whale Media is contacting as many website owners as possible who we know could be effected by the regulations.
This update to legislation may seem like an annoyance or inconvenience but ultimately it is being done to make the internet a safer place for all web users.
For this reason, this web design agency is welcoming the new regulations and are keen to get the ball rolling securing websites.
What Do WooCommerce shop Owners Need to Know?
The first thing any WooCommerce store owner needs to understand is that there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution. No two Woocommerce websites are exactly the same, with websites utilising different plug ins and themes. Therefore, the approach that needs to be taken will differ.
Complying with the GDPR is not just as simple as editing code within a website’s architecture, your website must adequately communicate to the visitor that their data will be used, how it will be used and give them the choice to opt out if they so wish.
This is a question of communication rather than a problem that can be solved with technological updates.
For a web design agency, depending on the size and complexity of the website, this can potentially be several days’ work involving both designers and developers.
How Blue Whale Media Can Help
Blue Whale Media are a web design agency that cares and are therefore publishing this blog post in a bid to make as many website owners as possible aware of the upcoming GDPR ruling. Our team of web developers and web designers will be working with existing clients to ensure that their websites adhere to the ruling’s regulations and urge all existing customers to get in touch.
As well as existing customers, any website owner that feels as if their website needs to be altered to fit the GDPR standards and needs help in doing so, can contact Blue Whale Media for a free and friendly chat about how we can protect their business.
Unfortunately, as I stated before, the level of work involved differs depending on the size, complexity and several other determining factors so we are unable to give a set price for all website owners.
We are however happy to give anyone enquiring about the regulation standards a free quote and a friendly chat about the level of work that needs to be carried out.