Word Notes 2.21.23
Ep 136 | 2.21.23

GDPR (noun)


Rick Howard: The word is: GDPR

Rick Howard: Spelled: G for general, D for data, P for protection, and R for regulation. 

Rick Howard: Definition: A data privacy legal framework that applies to all countries in the European Union, regulating the transmission, storage, and use of personal data associated with residents of the EU. 

Rick Howard: Example sentence: The company was fined millions of dollars under GDPR for collecting user data without consent. 

Rick Howard: Origin and context: GDPR was passed in April of 2016 and went into effect in May of 2018. Under the regulation, entities are only permitted to process personal data under the following six conditions: Number one, processing only with the user's consent, or number two, if you have a contract with the individual. Number three, or when other laws compel it. Number four, if it is necessary to protect a person's vital interest. Number five, if it's necessary for the public interest or in the exercise of public authority and lastly, number six, if it is necessary for a legitimate interest of the organization or some third party. 

Rick Howard: While GDPR only covers data belonging to residents of the EU, the regulation forced organizations around the world to adjust their data processing practices, yet they wish to continue operating in Europe without being hit by massive fines. The law states that companies can be fined up to 4% of their global annual revenues. 

Rick Howard: So far, the largest find under GDPR was imposed on Amazon by luxembourg's National Commission for Data Protection in 2021. The commission fined the company 746 million euros, or approximately 781 million US dollars, for allegedly storing advertising cookies without asking for user's consent. The second largest fine hit Facebook and Instagram's parent company Meta in September of 2022. After Ireland's Data Protection Commission or DPC found that children's Instagram accounts would be set to public by default, and that Instagram business accounts set up by children would expose their email addresses and phone numbers. The company was fined 405 million Euros, around 403 million US dollars. 

Rick Howard: Meta was also subject to the third largest GDPR fine in January of 2023 over its advertising practices on Facebook and Instagram. Ireland's DPC said that the company was forcing consent on its users by requiring them to accept its terms and conditions in order to access the platforms. The company is being fined 390 million Euros. GDPR is usually enforced by each European country's data protection authority For example, Amazon's European headquarters are in Luxembourg while Meta's European headquarters are in Dublin. 

Rick Howard: Nerd reference in season two, episode 11 of the Hacker TV Show, Mr. Robot that ran from 2015 to 2019. Evil Corp's CEO played by Michael Christopher is trying to make a deal with the United States Federal Reserve, the Fed, about the possibilities of a government-sponsored crypto coin. The main features being something that GDPR would stop. 

Michael Christopher: That's just the way of the world right now and Bitcoin is spreading and if Bitcoin takes over, we are all in a world of hell. With Ecoin we control the ledger and the mining servers. We are the authority. I will make sure you have visibility into every single wallet that's open, every loan, every transaction, which means, this is gonna be controlled by a good old fashioned American company. You want to regulate it, be my guest, regulate the shit out of it. I'll give you backdoor side doors, trace, whatever you want. Just don't shut it down. 

Rick Howard: Word Notes is written by Tim Nodar, executive produced by Peter Kilpe, and edited by John Petrik and me, Rick Howard. The mix, sound design, and original music have all been crafted by the ridiculously talented Elliott Peltzman. Thanks for listening.