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Does GDPR apply to Non-EU Citizens?

The GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) was a revolutionary law created to ensure that organizations do more than have check/uncheck privacy policy boxes on their websites. It forced enterprise-wide changes which ultimately led to the transformation of business operations.

In addition, it made the cost of negligence very high. It ensured that non-compliance resulted in hefty fines of 20 million Euros or 4% of a firm’s yearly turnover, whichever is higher.  

Due to GDPR, organizations today need to ensure that they are on the right side of the privacy policy regulations. Businesses and individuals often ask: do I need a cookie policy for my site? The answer is—yes, to those planning to do business with the EU or its residents.  

The following information is intended to help you understand the way GDPR works and discover if your business is compliant or not. Another privacy law you may need to be aware of is the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). Check out this article for a look at CCPA vs. GDPR.

To learn more about consent management platform software and how it’ll help with GDPR compliance, connect with our team of privacy experts at Ketch.

The Need For GDPR

Data protection has become a critical concern for everyone, from governments and businesses to individuals. With great advancements in the world of technology and the internet, this was always going to be necessary.

The use and misuse of data has become increasingly prevalent, which has helped to highlight the gaping holes that exist when it comes to data protection laws. Companies and individuals are being affected, so governments worldwide have had to go back to the drawing board to come up with amendments for their data privacy laws to keep up with the changing times.

This is why most experts in the data privacy policy field consider GDPR a great new protection standard. It has replaced the previous data protection laws in the European Union and in the UK, which had the 20-year-old DPA (Data Protection Act).

GDPR is considered a unified data protection law for all those residing within the European Union, which also includes oversight on data transferred in and out of the region. For those who are not familiar with GDPR, you must get acquainted with it to protect you, your business, and your customers.

Which Companies Come Under The Purview Of The GDPR?

One of the most significant impacts of the GDPR is the high number of companies doing business across the Atlantic that come under its purview. Even though all organizations that operate within the European Union have to comply with GDPR, US-based businesses also have to adhere to it if they want to transact business with EU residents.

Be it a for-profit company, a non-profit charity, or a public firm, any of these institutions collecting personal information on people residing in the EU will have to abide by GDPR rules. As you can see, the GDPR applies to anyone doing business within the EU or with its residents and engaged in collecting their data.


Firms that do not operate inside the EU but gather, store, or process the personal information of EU residents also come under the jurisdiction of the GDPR. Every third-party organization that works for or with companies providing goods and services to EU residents also comes under the purview of GDPR.

This is why many businesses and industries, both in Europe and the US, are affected by the GDPR. This also applies to a site’s first party cookie policy. All in all, the GDPR has managed to create so many ripples across the corporate world that no one can ignore its impact.

October 25, 2021

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