Top 10 Free GDPR Tools and Solutions You Didn’t Know Before
The internet has become one of the most important technological innovations in the history of humankind as it ushered in the coming of the Information Age. It introduced the world to an even greater sense of interconnectivity and its impact can be felt in all facets of human society. Perhaps its greatest impact can be felt in economics and marketing as it paved the way for companies to reach an even broader audience and introduce innovations that allowed them to specifically target audiences with personalized forms of advertising.
Personalized advertising has quickly become the norm for digital marketing. It, however, gave rise to questionable information-gathering tactics and has raised issues regarding consumer rights to privacy. The clamor for consumer data protection grew even greater, which led the European Union (EU) to impose legislation that would govern how consumer data is collected. This new law replaces the outdated Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC and came to be known as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
The new legislation highlighted the greater need for protection in consumer data and placed more responsibility at the hands of big businesses. In the advent of the GDPR, consumers now have greater control over their personal information. Businesses now need to perform GDPR assessment over their data-gathering policies to make sure they do not face stiff penalties.
There is now a greater need for compliance. The need to comply necessitates the use of GDPR tools and solutions to ensure that consumer data is protected. That is why we’ve come up with a list of GDPR tools and solutions to help your business adhere to the policies set by the EU. These free tools and solutions providers perform automate the process of auditing and assessment of your sites to maintain GDPR compliance.
What does GDPR mean?
The General Data Protection Regulation, or GDPR, aims to assert the rights of EU citizens on their privacy and personal data and highlights the responsibility of businesses doing business in and with the EU in handling the personal data of their citizens.
Under the GDPR, individuals have certain rights to their personal information. These are:
- The right to access
- The right to be forgotten
- The right to data portability
- The right to be informed
- The right to have information corrected
- The right to restrict processing
- The right to object
- The right to be notified
The new regulation gives individuals, prospects, customers, contractors, and employees more power over their data and takes away power from organizations that collect data for monetary gain. Non-compliance will leave businesses facing hefty fines, which can amount to 4% of their annual global revenue, or 20 million Euros, whichever is greater.
Why is GDPR necessary?
The existence of the GDPR is the European Union’s response to public concerns over data privacy. Even before the internet became the business powerhouse it is today, the EU’s Data Protection Directive, released in 1995, was placed to protect any individual’s data with regard to their processing and free movement.
With increasing accounts of high-profile data breaches, public concern over privacy continues to escalate. In fact, an RSA Data Privacy & Security Report indicated that around 80% of consumers in Germany, France, the UK, Italy, and the U.S. have lost pertinent financial and banking data. Lost security and identity information were among those that were highlighted as areas of high concern.
The establishment of the GDPR aims to ease public concerns over the storage, sharing, and security over private information. Not only that, companies are held more accountable in handling these pieces of information. This highlights the need for GDPR solutions through GDPR assessment to
What Types of Data does the GDPR Protect?
The requirements set by the GDPR have significantly altered the way companies can gather information and make use of these pieces of information. These guidelines protect:
- Web data such as IP addresses, locations, cookies, and RFID tags
- Information related to a person’s identity such as the names, ID numbers, and addresses
- Ethnic or racial information
- Genetics and health-related information
- Biometric information
- Sexual orientation
- Opinions on politics
The GDPR imposes strict penalties for those that breach the GDPR - penalties that we’ve covered above. This is why compliance with the GDPR rules and guidelines is extremely necessary.
In order to speed up the process of compliance, we’ve come up with a list of free GDPR tools to help with your company’s GDPR assessment strategies. Keep in mind that GDPR solutions like these are extremely valuable in today’s internet landscape so make sure to check them out.
Top Ten Free GDPR Solutions and Tools:
Ghostery is a user-friendly browser extension that allows users to browse faster and smarter by controlling ads and the way they track your data. They make use of state-of-the-art tracking technology to make sure your information is safe and secure. Use Ghostery to scan your own website.
- Blocks third-party data-tracking technologies
- Removes advertisements to eliminate clutter
- Page optimization to make pages load faster by automatically blocking and unblocking trackers to meet page quality criteria
- Customize the information users can see to display only relevant information
- Enhanced anti-tracking and ad-blocking technologies to create safer browsing environments
- GDPR tools to help comply with the EU e-Privacy directive and the GDPR
- Offers various design options
- Ability to control first-party and third-party cookies
- Data consent tracking
Let’s Encrypt is a global Certificate Authority (CA) that allows people and organizations around the world to obtain, renew, and manage SSL/TLS certificates. It is an automated GDPR assessment tool that makes it possible to set up an HTTPS server and have it automatically obtain a browser-trusted certificate without human intervention, allowing sites to provide more security over user information while using sites. Use Let's Encrypt to upgrade any missing parts of your digital offerings to SSL.
- Can generate ECDSA root and intermediates that can be used to sign end-entity certificates.
- Employs TLS ALPN Challenge support for users who only want to use port 443 for validation.
- Makes use of and installs a plethora of security certificates to enforce data security and privacy.
Termly is a website that assists in GDPR assessment strategies to improve data protection and management and ensure that sites are compliant with the GDPR. They employ a wide variety of GDPR tools & solutions to help companies and organizations fulfill legislative requirements set by the GDPR.
Commission Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libertes, or CNIL, is a French data protection authority that aims to protect data and preserve individual liberties while also ensuring that innovations are supported. CNIL publishes a free Privacy Impact Assessment tool to ensure the lawfulness of processing data to enforce user rights over data. The tool is designed to build site compliance with the GDPR.
WordPress makes available a variety of GDPR tools aimed at ensuring site compliance with the GDPR, the highest-rated of which is GDPR Cookie Compliance. The plugin is meant to assist a Controller, Data Processor, and Data Protection Officer (DPO) with efforts to meet the obligations and rights enacted under the GDPR.
- Consent management
- Privacy Preference management for Cookies, with front-end preference UI & banner notifications
- Rights to erasure & deletion of website data with a double opt-in confirmation email
- Re-assignment of user data on erasure requests & pseudonymization of user Data Processor settings and publishing of contact information
- Right to access data by admin dashboard with email lookup and export
- Right to access data by Data Subject with front-end requests button & double opt-in confirmation email
- Various other features that ensure GDPR compliance
The Avepoint Privacy Impact Assessment (APIA) System automates the process of GDPR assessment and evaluation and keeps you updated on the process, ensuring that compliance-related efforts are going on the right direction. It helps monitor activity and progress throughout the process. It also supplies categorized suggestions to help close existing gaps with regards to people, technologies, or processes.
- End-user reporting on access to site traffic, search usage, active users, checked-out documents, and top documents
- Compliance and governance reporting to security and compliance officers for easy identification of suspicious activity
- Office 365 support for records management to improve automated conflict resolution
- Content archiving approval to empower end-users to review content prior to archiving
- Virtual machine backups for improved protection on virtual elements
The Data Protection Authority of Bavaria for the Private Sector (BayLDA) is another data protection authority that is mandated to enforce data protection measures under the GDPR and ensure that data protection laws are followed by data controllers. They provide GDPR assessment services and inspections on existing organization policies to make sure the laws are being followed and take action when breaches are committed such as crucial data processing and sharing.
Webskoll is a cookies analyzer and helps you understand how privacy friendly your website is. Web Privacy Check monitors privacy enhancing features on websites and helps you find out who is letting you exercise control over your privacy. We check to what extent a website monitors your behavior and how much they gossip about the monitoring to third parties. We’ve also compiled a set of recommendations for web designers and managers on how to not track or gossip in digital environments. We also suggest questions and feature requests from users of websites who want to alert webmasters to the opportunity for improvement.
- Sharing cookies that the your have on your website
- Sharing the indexes
- If you have a secure connection
ECOMPLY.io provides GDPR assessment that come with an easy-to-understand, clearly-stated step-by-step plan towards creating policies that ensure compliance. These GDPR solutions allow easy application on any platform, which incorporates features that save 70% GDPR preparation and documentation time by giving the right answers to the right questions, even without legal assistance from any lawyer.
Project management & workflow strategies employed by ECOMPLY.io provides any organization and business with a clear report of any requirements currently needed to ensure compliance. We offer a free 14-day trial that can surely bring your organization multiple steps closer to compliance with no credit card necessary.
- Clear instructions towards GDPR compliance
- Saves you time on familiarization because their GDPR tools are easy to use
- Compliance progress tracking
- Multi-user management for every team
- Reports are easily exportable as beautiful PDFs
- 1-click assignment of data flows
- Provides automatic reminders of progress
- All data protection efforts come in an all-in-one platform
- Automatic vendor management
- Attachment of compliance badge as a demonstration of compliance after successful strategy adoption
- Multitudes of templates are available to suit your needs
- Compliance for both controllers and processors
The General Data Protection Regulation, or GDPR, has indeed changed the way data can be collected and certainly brought with it still penalties for non-compliance. Choosing not to do business with the EU in lieu of compliance is also not an option. These essential GDPR tools and service providers can surely be of immense help to businesses and organizations as they employ strategies and policies that will help them comply with the new regulation. Remember that these GDPR tools & solutions have several benefits that can make the process of compliance much easier and more efficient.
So, which free tool was your favorite? Which one are you going to use?