Tagged in: privacy

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Why Web Designers Should Care About GDPR And Its Effects

On May 25th, the infamous GDPR went into effect, forcing all Internet-dependent companies into changing their privacy policies online, mainly to protect the privacy of all E.U. citizens. If you currently live in Europe, your inbox is probably spammed with ‘We’re changing our privacy policy” messages from Facebook, YouTube, Google, etc.

National governments aren’t required to vote on this matter because it’s a regulation, so it’s applicable with immediate effects. Why worry about it, though? Well, in some of the ‘GDPR changed our privacy policy’ messages they kept sending to you in the past month or so, they didn’t only notify users about hiring DPOs (Data Protection Officers) in their companies, but some have also announced changes in design as well.

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The beginning of human data rights

In the past few years, giants such as Facebook and Yahoo have leaked and illegally used data without their users’ consent, respectively, which is why GDPR was first created, back in mid-2016. Once these allegations went public, they were heavily criticized by Zuckerberg and other CEOs. However, the Senate testimony of Zuckerberg back in April revealed to us that Facebook’s creator not only sold data without consent and didn’t know the purpose of this data, but he somewhat disagreed with the senators concerning government-imposed data & privacy regulations.

Before the GDPR went into effect, Zuckerberg was invited as a guest in the E.U.’s Parliament as well, where he wasn’t received well by its members. Nevertheless, Facebook justifies using part of the personal information with consent for marketing purposes. In their own words, “It’s better to know what customers like and serve them quality content, content that truly matters to them.”

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Privacy by design

Part of the GDPR, the ‘privacy by design’ concept is what truly matters to designers. According to this, there are seven fundamental principles¬†to follow when this process occurs.

1. Proactive, not reactive

This simple rule explains that DPOs and designers should act before things turn sour, instead of waiting for it to happen, then react.

2. Privacy as the default setting

It means that you, as a designer, will deliver the maximum amount of privacy by ensuring all personal data is by default – protected in any given system.

3. Privacy embedded into design

In short, every designer must include privacy as a fundamental part of the system’s core. Functionality must not suffer on account of incorporating privacy protection methods, yet the latter must remain intact.

4. Full functionality

How to achieve full functionality? No idea, but you need to achieve a ‘win-win’ situation where both privacy and security will be present in the product/solution.

5. End-to-end security

Another important feature of GDPR’s ‘Privacy by Design’ concept is the end-to-end security. Basically, what happens to gata is being born, used, and destroyed in a finite period of time. No data can be left behind this process.

6. Visibility and transparency

Trust is gained by showing everything you’ve done with the data provided, increasing the levels of transparency and visibility. Every individual stakeholder has the right to request this, so get ready to show what you’ve done with the data. On the other hand, hiding certain acts is punishable according to GDPR.

7. Respect for user privacy

Finally, there should be strong privacy defaults, timely notice concerning anything connected to data, and protective user-friendly choices.

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Conclusion

All seven of these fundamentals should be respected, as your data protection officer would ensure of it. However, this beautiful turn of events for data protection just created a world of chaos for web designers all around the world, as most of them now have tons of extra tasks, including the re-work of old designs and careful creation of new ones. In the end, everyone will agree it’s for the greater good.

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5 Privacy-Based Alternatives To Facebook Following The ‘Cambridge Analytica Data Breach’

The #deletefacebook movement is increasing by the minute. Large companies such as Playboy, Elon Musk’s Tesla have already deleted their multi-million fan pages. Famous celebrities such as Will Ferrell and Brian Acton have also announced to quit Facebook once and for all. The social network’s stocks have fallen by almost 20% and Zuckerberg counts losses of over $80 billion in just a few days.

This is but a part of the aftermath concerning Facebook and Cambridge Analytica’s data breach. Facebook allowed this political consulting firm access to data consisting of personal information on 50 million Facebook users. All this data was used to directly influence voters during political campaigns. The key people of Cambridge Analytica admitted to have been using this type of service in both the U.K. and U.S., especially during Trump’s presidential campaign back in 2016.

Following the scandal, many people now completely distrust Mark Zuckerberg, especially since he tried to justify this unauthorized breach of the security and safety of the users’ personal information. The #deletefacebook movement now offers new alternatives to end Facebook’s domination and increase our awareness of what can happen if we again allow a website to influence our voting (and other life) decisions.

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Ello

Or as the creators define it – built by artists, for artists. This ad-free social network is a great alternative to Facebook, because as a service, it has vowed to never show ads nor enforce a real-name policy. Most importantly, it will never sell user data to third parties and advertising networks. Its features include new emojis, various privacy settings and private messaging (in the process of making.) It’s been around since the beginning of 2014 and has more than 1 million users, but following Facebook’s data breach scandal, it’s expected to at least double by the end of 2018.

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Steemit

A great place to communicate and gain information, Steemit allows you to publish useful posts and even get paid for it! They have their own cryptocurrency they’re trying to promote and it already has initial value. You can earn more than $500 worth of Steem tokens for being upvoted by hundreds of thousands of visitors. It allows people to comment and develop new conversations. Like in Ello, you’re not obliged to enter your real name and other personal information.

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Mastodon

The open-source, free-to-use social network is not commercial in any way possible. They will not mine data and sell it to third parties, you will see no ads, and there’s no HQ of the company. The network sees people as people, not products. Here, you’re able to talk to people on different servers and post Twitter-like messages, as well as connect with others. Its creators aim to combat the misuse of social media and respect basic human rights. It currently “houses” more than 140 thousand users.

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Vero

This is one of the most promising social networks, true to its cause. Why is it so important to us as users? Firstly, it doesn’t show useless advertising nor does it target any by collecting our data. Secondly, it already has more than a million users/subscribers waiting patiently to start using it. Most importantly, it allows you to track time spent on the network, which is the only data they collect but can be turned off with the click of a button. This network allows you to share anything you like and choose who you’ll share it with. On the other hand, it promotes using social media less than we need to due to its effects. How cool is that?

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Diaspora

Based on the Diaspora software, this network allows users to control their privacy and personal information in entirety. There are no advertisements, no staff, no headquarters and no payment methods. You can practically use it with the same options as it is on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. Most importantly, it does not oblige you to give out correct personal information such as your real name or place of birth.

 

In conclusion, it’s much better to focus on your alternatives now that Facebook is no longer rock-solid in terms of being the ‘social media monopoly’, simply because business and other opportunities are decreasing and people turn to other channels where they will socialize, exchange experiences and seek for new job opportunities.