In the early days of the web, individuals may browse the net and entry data anonymously, visiting any web site without having to create an account or present any private data. However, the web’s evolution has made it more and more tough to stay nameless.

Major firms like Facebook and Google have constructed their companies round gathering knowledge about their customers and promoting it to advertisers. Check out the Blockchain Value Season 1, Episode 1 podcast  Enterprise Blockchain — Is Your Company Missing Out? with Adrienne Garcia.

In current years, rising concern about on-line privateness has led to the event of recent applied sciences (corresponding to blockchain) that supply the next degree of privateness. Interest in blockchain continues to develop among the many rising variety of privacy-conscious people.

1. The EU’s GDPR And Drafting Of The EU EPrivacy Regulation

The European Union has been a frontrunner in on-line privateness safety. In 2018, the EU carried out the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which requires firms to get express consent from customers earlier than gathering, utilizing, or sharing their knowledge. Companies that violate the GDPR will be fined as much as 4% of their annual income.

Thus far, the GDPR has been considerably profitable in defending the web privateness of EU residents. The EU is presently engaged on a brand new regulation known as the ePrivacy Regulation.

The ePrivacy Regulation will complement the GDPR, offering extra protections for digital communications.

2. US Trends And The CCPA

While the United States has been slower to undertake legal guidelines defending on-line privateness, that is beginning to change. In 2018, California handed the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), requiring firms to reveal what private data they accumulate and to offer customers the precise to delete their knowledge.

The CCPA doesn’t particularly point out blockchain, however the regulation does apply to firms that use blockchain expertise. For occasion, an organization that makes use of blockchain to retailer buyer knowledge must disclose that to prospects; prospects would even have the precise to request that their knowledge be deleted from the blockchain.

The CCPA is only one instance of a development towards better privateness safety within the United States. Other states are within the strategy of passing (or are contemplating) comparable legal guidelines sooner or later.

3. Anonymity, Pseudonymity, And Privacy Law Applicability

Anonymity is, fairly merely, the state of being nameless. An nameless particular person doesn’t share their title or every other figuring out data. Pseudonymity describes the act of utilizing a pseudonym (a nontrue title that can be utilized to guard somebody’s identification).

Privacy legal guidelines just like the GDPR and the CCPA solely apply to individuals who will be recognized. This implies that anonymity and pseudonymity can be utilized to keep away from these legal guidelines.

In reality, anonymity is among the important causes individuals use blockchain, because it permits individuals to transact with out revealing their identities. This implies that blockchain can be utilized to bypass privateness legal guidelines.

However, there are some conditions the place privateness legal guidelines nonetheless apply to blockchain transactions. For instance, if an individual makes use of their actual title once they join a blockchain-based service, then their actual title might be saved on the blockchain. This implies that privateness legal guidelines will nonetheless apply to this particular person.

4. Data Controller And Data Processor Identification

Data controllers are answerable for guaranteeing that private knowledge is collected and utilized in accordance with the regulation. Data processors are answerable for processing private knowledge on behalf of information controllers. The GDPR and the ePrivacy Regulation apply to each knowledge controllers and knowledge processors.

5. Location, Location, Location … And Then More

While the GDPR and the ePrivacy Regulation solely apply to firms which might be primarily based within the EU, they may also apply to firms that course of the private knowledge of EU residents. This implies that firms which might be primarily based within the United States however accumulate or use the private knowledge of EU residents might want to adjust to each the GDPR and the ePrivacy Regulation.


Blockchain and privateness are two essential subjects. Companies and their counsel want to pay attention to these points when gathering or utilizing private knowledge on blockchain.

Olga MackOlga V. Mack is the CEO of Parley Pro, a next-generation contract administration firm that has pioneered on-line negotiation expertise. Olga embraces authorized innovation and had devoted her profession to enhancing and shaping the way forward for regulation. She is satisfied that the authorized occupation will emerge even stronger, extra resilient, and extra inclusive than earlier than by embracing expertise. Olga can be an award-winning basic counsel, operations skilled, startup advisor, public speaker, adjunct professor, and entrepreneur. She based the Women Serve on Boards motion that advocates for ladies to take part on company boards of Fortune 500 firms. She authored Get on Board: Earning Your Ticket to a Corporate Board Seat and Fundamentals of Smart Contract Security. You can observe Olga on Twitter @olgavmack.

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