The last two or three years (2017 onwards), have seen a significant change in how governments across the world regulate internet use. The most significant change across the world was the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), a law by the European Union. The US and other regions have followed up on these laws with their own, often improved, features.
So what do the majority of these rules mean for the internet user?
A New Era of Privacy
Privacy has always been the bone of contention between users, governments, and entities that offer services over the internet. Governments want to have a say in the type of data that these entities can collect from users, and how they can use such data. Companies are always fighting to resist such control.
Users, on the other hand, want to dictate how much data they are asked to produce- even by the governments themselves. They also want assurance that their data will not be put to unauthorized use by whatever online body is collecting it.
The latest laws across the board, are in all senses of benefit to the user. They make the user’s online experience better in various ways.
In most recent engagements, you may have noticed that most websites notify you that they collect cookies. They offer you the option to either accept the cookies piecemeal or manage them. For you as a user, this means that you get to know exactly what data they are collecting and for what purposes. By managing cookies, you control the type of ads that pop up on your devices and platforms.
One of the incidences that led to widespread attention to online data was the 2016 Presidential election in America. There were concerns that internet users’ privacy was invaded and used to influence the polls. Recent data laws enhance your privacy on the internet.
While not exhaustive, recent internet laws have worked to protect you as a user whenever you go online. It is, however, important to understand these laws and know how to apply them whenever you go online.