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Category: GDPR & Privacy

Google Analytics Audits – An Enterprise Study

Categories: GA & GTM, GDPR & Privacy, Setup Accuracy / Comments: 2

Part of my job involves auditing Google Analytics setups in order to establish the quality of the data collected. This video story brings together some of the extraordinary findings of my work. Its a study of 75 enterprise websites using Google Analytics. I describe the audit methodology and display the results in a visual scorecard format. The results are somewhat surprising Read more

Using Google Analytics Anonymize IP – An Impact Study

Categories: GDPR & Privacy, Setup Accuracy / Comments: 2

A key recommendation for GDPR compliance is to use the Google Analytics feature anonymizeIP, also known as "aip". As the name suggests, this simple switch drops the last 3 digits from your visitor's IP address. For example, if a visitor has a public ip of, then Google will obfuscate this to 217.115.40. (and all other visitor ip addresses) when it Read more

GDPR – Request Consent Before Tracking? (or, what defines personal data)

Categories: GDPR & Privacy / Comments: 8

GDPR means that organisations need to keep records of all personal data, be able to prove that consent was given, show where data is going, what its being used for, and how it is being protected. And it applies to anyone processing data on EU citizens. But what defines personal data...? And how is PII different...? Obviously name, address, telephone details etc. Read more

Google Analytics Data Retention Settings Explained

Categories: GDPR & Privacy / Comments: 24

I must admit that the new Google Analytics documentation about the GDPR specific Data Retention setting is confusing! The whole area is surprisingly badly worded by Google... The assumption is that ALL data older than NN months is going to be deleted i.e. a cliff-edge effect where any report older than say 26 months is going to be empty. The setting is important, Read more

Is Google Analytics Removing Personal Data?

Categories: GA & GTM, GDPR & Privacy / Comments: 2

Google Analytics is now automatically removing personal info from collected data. So far only for query term "email". I regularly audit and test accounts for PII and found this today: Google Analytics is automatically replacing email addresses it finds in your reports with the text "obfuscated" - in real time. At present it seems only to work when sent as a value in Read more

How-to Match Google Analytics Transactions With Reality

Categories: GDPR & Privacy, Implementation Fundamentals, Metrics Understanding, Setup Accuracy / Comments: 1

If you have a transactional site, then of course you will want your transactional and product data as measured by Google Analytics, to match the real sales numbers that your back-end system collects. However in reality, these never exactly match due to a number of issues. These include: 1) Processing time differences; 2) Returns; 3) Blocked tracking; 4) Cross-domain tracking issues Read more

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