Most likely, the answer is increasingly “YES!”
And by “personal information”, we mean things as simple and seemingly innocuous as the name and email address that your visitors enter into your opt-in form or Contact form on your website!
General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
Everyone’s favorite nanny state, the European Union, added tremendous momentum to an already rolling snowball when it legislated GDPR, a requirement obligating websites ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD to obtain explicit consent from users residing in any of the EU member countries, prior to collecting their data in virtually any form (including computer cookies and tracking information).
Consent can be given in a written or electronic manner. The request for consent must be intelligible, easily accessible, and use clear and plain language.
GDPR applies to you if:
- You are located in a member country of the European Union;
- You offer goods or services to residents of any European Union country, regardless of your location;
- You monitor the behavior of residents of any European Union country, regardless of your location; or
- You process and hold the personal data of the residents of any European Union country, regardless of your location.
California Online Privacy Protection Act of 2003 (CalOPPA)
Also, this law does not have a revenue requirement, meaning that it can be applied to small businesses as well as large ones.
California Consumer Protection Act (CCPA)
The CCPA is a little more limiting in that it is specifically applied to businesses with annual gross revenues exceeding $250 million, or which annually buys, receives, sells or shares the personal information of 50,000 or more California residents, households or devices, or derives 50% or more of its annual revenue from selling the personal information of California residents.
Again, the CCPA does not distinguish as to where the business or website is actually located, but rather where the consumers or users of the website are located.
Nevada Privacy Law
The Nevada law and its amendment applies to “operators” which is defined as any person who:
- Owns and operates a website or online service for business purposes;
- Collects and maintains the personal information of consumers who reside in Nevada and who use or visit the Internet website or online service; and
- Purposefully directs its activities toward Nevada, consummates a transaction with the state of Nevada or a resident of Nevada, purposefully avails itself of the privilege of conducting activities in Nevada, or otherwise engages in any activity that constitutes sufficient nexus with Nevada to satisfy the requirements of the U.S. Constitution.
Once again, the Nevada law does not require your business to be physically located in Nevada for it to apply. The law also does not have a revenue requirement, meaning that it can be applied to small businesses as well as large.
These four laws are just the ones that are in place right now or which are going into effect very soon.
Termageddon’s Privacy Policies are also provided as an add-on to Breckshire’s own website Care Plans, for a fully worry-free website for your business!
About the Author: Donata Kalnenaite is a licensed attorney (Illinois) and certified information privacy professional, and is the President of Termageddon. She holds courses for the Illinois State Bar Association on the General Data Protection Regulation, as well as teaching other attorneys on the importance of privacy and what Privacy Policies should contain.
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