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Sites block EU users before GDPR takes effect


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Users and clients of Instapaper, Unroll.me and Ragnarok Online among those affected



The General Data Protection Regulation comes into force on Friday



With less than a day until the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into effect, a growing number of companies are taking the nuclear option to ensure compliance: blocking all European users from their servers.


Instapaper, a read-later service owned by the US firm Pinterest, became the latest to disconnect European customers on Thursday. It said the cutoff was temporary while it made the required changes, and told users: “We apologise for any inconvenience, and we intend to restore access as soon as possible.” Pinterest did not respond to a request for comment.


Other companies have taken a more permanent approach. Unroll.me, an inbox management firm, announced it was withdrawing services for EU companies due to an inability to offer its product – which is monetised by selling insights gleaned from reading users’ emails – in a way that was compatible with EU law. “We are truly sorry that we are unable to offer our service to you,” the company told EU users.


Some online games, including Ragnarok Online, have switched off their EU servers.


Other firms have not gone so far as to blame the new regulation but have closed EU operations with convenient timing. Crowdpac, a political fundraising organisation set up by David Cameron’s former “guru” Steve Hilton, announced it was closing its UK wing “for business reasons” until further notice. The company, which was still raising funds in the UK as recently as Sunday, now says it “hopes one day to be back”.


Some see the law as a moneymaking opportunity. One service, GDPR Shield, offers to block EU users from companies’ sites. Its website says it can save companies that are not targeting EU users thousands in legal fees.


“If you don’t have an in-house legal team, complying with the law requires you to consult with a lawyer specialising in data protection law,” GDPR Shield tells potential customers. “In addition, you’re at risk of vindictive reporting from no-win-no-fee legal firms.”


Klout, a social media analytics service, and Super Monday Night Combat, an online game, will shut down on Friday. Lithium, the owner of Klout, said: “Klout no longer made sense as a standalone service. The upcoming deadline for GDPR implementation simply expedited our plans to sunset Klout.”


Brian Honan, a data protection expert, said he did not view the shutdowns as a consequence of the new law. “The GDPR’s primary goal is to enhance the protections around the gathering and processing of the personal data belonging to individuals residing within the European Union,” he said. “Companies have had well over two years to prepare for the enforcement date and to be ready.


“Organisations outside of the EU who target and process personal data belonging to individuals resident in the EU are also required to comply with the GDPR. Organisations outside of the EU that are blocking access or refusing to provide their services to people within the EU are demonstrating how little regard they have paid to protecting the privacy and the personal data of their users, and it could also be argued are commercially being naive by deciding to ignore one of the largest consumer markets in the world.”




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I just found a blocked  site using a vpn  so this  is no joke

Arizona Daily Star news site has blocked them :tooth:





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great actom, those who use vpn as steven good not just that, some sites I think that there are people who visit them daily as we visit NS will have to wait or definitely. -_-



Microsoft to exercise GDPR policies not just in Europe, but worldwide

Julie Brill, corporate vice president of Microsoft, announced via blog post on Tuesday that with regard to GDPR compliance, the company won't just stop with Europe, but will incorporate the policies in its services for all of its users throughout the world.

"Known as Data Subject Rights, they include the right to know what data we collect about you, to correct that data, to delete it and even to take it somewhere else."

The General Data Protection Regulation, which more than likely has taken your inbox by storm in the past month, forces companies operating in Europe to comply with strict guidelines that serve to strengthen users' privacy. A lot of companies such as Facebook are actively hunting for ways to skirt compliance, whereas many such as Verve, UnRoll, Tungle and Drawbridge are pulling out of the EU outright by use of third-party services that block IP addresses in the region from accessing their websites.

As per Microsoft in its specialized portal for GDPR-related changes to its services:

Personal privacy

Individuals have the right to:

  • Access their personal data
  • Correct errors in their personal data
  • Erase their personal data
  • Object to processing of their personal data
  • Export personal data

Controls and notifications

Organizations will need to:

  • Protect personal data using appropriate security
  • Notify authorities of personal data breaches
  • Obtain appropriate consents for processing data
  • Keep records detailing data processing

Transparent policies

Organizations are required to:

  • Provide clear notice of data collection
  • Outline processing purposes and use cases
  • Define data retention and deletion policies

IT and training

Organizations will need to:

  • Train privacy personnel and employees
  • Audit and update data policies
  • Employ a Data Protection Officer (if required)
  • Create and manage compliant vendor contracts

Consequentially, users can find a number of new settings in their Microsoft account dashboard, in accordance with the changes made by the company to its privacy policy.

At the end of the day, this is by no means something Microsoft has to do outside of the EU. But it's nice to see a large company act as a standard bearer for a right as basic as privacy, and hope remains that other companies, such as Apple, follow in Microsoft's footsteps in this regard.



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Facebook to apply GDPR privacy policies worldwide after all

At the height of the Cambridge Analytica data scandal, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg did not immediately commit to applying the European Union's General Data Protection Rules (GDPR) to the social networking site across the world, saying he agreed with the policies only "in spirit." Erin Egan, Chief Privacy Officer at Facebook, has finally shed light on the scope of the company's GDPR implementation, saying in a blog post that Facebook will exercise the rules' provisions across its global platform.


Egan explains that starting this week, Facebook users will be seeing an alert once they navigate to the News Feed, which will request them to review the details about advertising, face recognition, and information they’ve shared in their profile. The social media giant initially rolled out this experience to users in the European Union and it's now extending the same to users worldwide.


As part of its GDPR preparation, Facebook will inform its more than two billion users over the next few weeks about how it handles their data collected from its partners for targeted ads as well as their political, religious, and relationship information shared on their profile. Additionally, users will be informed how Facebook uses its facial recognition system and will receive updates to the site's terms of service and data policy announced last month.

Facebook joins other tech companies in exercising GDPR globally, including Apple - which launched a new Data and Privacy website to comply with the new GDPR policies - and Microsoft, which recently vowed to implement the GDPR policies not only in Europe but also globally.



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