GDPR: 73% of Europeans have heard of at least one of their rights

One year after the introduction of GDPR, EU citizens are still now well aware of their rights

On 13 June, at the occasion of a stock-taking event to mark the first year of application of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the European Commission published the results of a special Eurobarometer survey on data protection. Figures show that Europeans are relatively well aware of the new data protection rules, their rights and the existence of national data protection authorities, to whom they can turn for help when their rights are violated.

In particularly, the Eurobarometer results (based on the views of 27,000 Europeans) show that 73% of respondents have heard of at least one of the six tested rights guaranteed by the GDPR. The highest levels of awareness among citizens are recorded for the right to access their own data (65%), the right to correct the data if they are wrong (61%), the right to object to receiving direct marketing (59%) and the right to have their own data deleted (57%).

In addition, 67% of respondents know about the GDPR and 57% of respondents know about their national data protection authorities. The results also show that data protection is a concern, as 62% of respondents are concerned that they do not have complete control over the personal data provided online.

"Of the 60% Europeans who read their privacy statements, only 13% read them fully. This is because the statements are too long or too difficult to understand," Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality Vera Jourova stated, urging  all online companies to provide privacy statements that are concise, transparent and easily understandable by all users.

"I also encourage all Europeans to use their data protection rights and to optimise their privacy settings,” she added.

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