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Google Analytics alternative

Tips & Tricks
3 Minutes Reading time

by Katrin Nebermann

Google Analytics is currently used on more than half of all websites in Germany. Last but not least, the free use and close integration with Google advertising services explain its widespread use.

However, the use of Google Analytics has long been viewed very critically in Germany under data protection law. This is because Google lays claim to the collected data and links it across all tracked websites and its own advertising platform. Among other things, socio-demographic data on users can be viewed in all accounts.

On May 12, 2020, the Conference of Independent Data Protection Supervisory Authorities of the Federal and State Governments passed a resolution setting out the minimum data protection requirements that must be met by website operators when using Google Analytics.

Informed, voluntary, active and prior consent of the user is therefore always mandatory – even if the IP anonymization function is used:

“The consent must clearly describe that the data processing is essentially carried out by Google, that the data is not anonymous, which data is processed and that Google uses it for any of its own purposes such as profiling and links it to other data such as any Google accounts. A mere reference such as “this site uses cookies to improve your browsing experience” or “uses cookies for web analytics and advertising” is not sufficient, but misleading, because the associated processing is not made transparent. […]

The object of the consent must be made clear. be: Users of Google Analytics must make it clear for what purpose Google Analytics is used, that the usage data is processed by Google LLC, that this data is stored in the USA, that both Google and government authorities have access to this data, that this data is linked to other data of the user such as search history, personal accounts, usage data of other devices and all other data that Google has on this user.”

EU-US Privacy Shield

The BGH ruling of 28.05.2020, the so-called cookie ruling, confirmed the position of the supervisory authorities. The Schrems II ruling of the ECJ on 16.07.2020, which declared the Privacy Shield agreement between the EU and the USA invalid with immediate effect, has further exacerbated the legal problem. This is because the use of so-called “standard contractual clauses” would only be possible with additional guarantees, such as the encryption of personal data by the client, whereby the key may only be available to the client. Explicit consent by users also requires prior information on the risks of data transfer.

The Berlin Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information, Maja Smoltczyk, therefore calls in her Press release from 17.07.2020 “… calls on all controllers subject to its supervision to comply with the ECJ’s decision. Controllers that transfer personal data to the USA – especially when using cloud services – are now required to immediately switch to service providers in the European Union or in a country with an adequate level of data protection.”

Fortunately, with etracker Analytics there is a European alternative to Google Analytics with special advantages:

  1. Migration is quick and easy to implement.
  2. By default, etracker Analytics can record all conversions and visitor interactions in a legally compliant manner even if statistics cookies are rejected.
  3. The interface is intuitive to use and structured in a similar way to Google Analytics.
  4. As before, Google Ads campaigns can be automatically evaluated and the anonymous conversion data transferred to Google Ads.
  5. In the Enterprise Edition, the reporting data can also be accessed via a REST interface. Raw data can be imported into BI and visualization tools for further processing.

See for yourself and be inspired by the numerous reporting functions and the functionality of cookie-free, consent-free tracking.

Register now for the weekly harbor tour the etracker Analytics presentation webinar.

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