There are few people actually enforcing GDPR

(This was originally published in today’s Monetizing Media newsletter. Sign up here.)

There are few people actually enforcing GDPR
The EU’s GDPR data privacy rules have caused fear and headaches for the media industry given the hefty fines for violating it and the costs to comply. It turns out there are very few people actually assigned to enforce it.

From a report by Brave, the privacy-centric internet browser, Germany is the only country meaningfully funding its GDPR compliance team:

  • Half of EU member states have less than €5m in annual budget for their data protection authorities.
  • Only 6 countries have more than 10 technical specialists on their compliance teams.
  • 1/3 of all the technical specialists across member states (101) are in Germany.
  • Ireland, which is in charge of supervising Google, Facebook, and other US tech giants as the legal home of their European HQs, has only 21 technical investigators.
  • Austria and Belgium don’t even have full-time technical investigators on staff, just contractors.
  • Without sufficient technical investigators — staff with relevant computer science backgrounds — these agencies can’t conduct investigations with enough sophistication to defend their case against well-funded legal teams at target companies.