GDPR Shutdown for Some American Companies

The start date for the General Data Protection Regulation(GDPR) was 25th May 2018 and almost all business and other organisations affected were well prepared.

But some went a little mad instead.

The GDPR rules are intended to give consumers more choice over how they are communicated with, better protection of data held by organisations and more openness in the communications.

But, dozens of websites shut down their activities completely, others insisted users agree to new terms of service, and everyone’s inboxes have been flooded with emails begging them to agree to stay on mailing lists.  Quite often the emails have been from companies we didn’t even know had our details.

Margot James, the digital minister said that businesses would now have to prove they had been given permission to use an individual’s information, including contact details.

“Except in certain, limited instances, organisations now must demonstrate they have our explicit consent to process our sensitive personal data. Generally, we’ve also given greater control to the British public over how their data is used. No doubt like me you’ll have received a flurry of emails in recent weeks from the organisations currently holding your data, and perhaps some you weren’t even aware did, asking for you to re-submit this consent.”

Many American companies have been unsure what to do and opted for simply closing their websites to European users.

  • Instapaper has blocked European users
  • me says European users cannot use its products
  • com is blocking European users
  • The Los Angeles Times
  • The New York Daily News
  • The Chicago Tribune

A little planning would have removed the need for such precipitate action, but hopefully they will open their doors to Europeans again soon.

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