Ah, GDPR. Who hasn’t heard about this new set of laws at this point? We probably don’t need to repeat that they’re EU laws meant to protect the private information of EU citizens. And at this point, you probably already understand that these protections are granted to EU citizens worldwide, regardless of where your company or service is located.
Fortunately, this blog post isn’t about how we have updated our Privacy Statements. Instead, we are going to take a look at an easy way to meet a GDPR requirement: informing clients of how their information is used.
Ideally, plugins collecting sensitive data would give you the tools to inform your visitors but that’s going to take a long time. But by making your own GDPR messages that you can display anywhere on your Joomla site, you can get started right now. And as you’ll see it’s literally as easy as adding a module.
Not a reader? Watch how it’s done in the video below. You can also find the video on our YouTube channel, JandMoreTV
- The text for the article about how the personal data will be used
- A text for the module
- RegularLabs Advanced Module Manager
How it’s done
Before we continue, make sure Advanced Module Manager is installed. You can find the plugin in Joomla’s Install From Web or you can download it directly from the RegularLabs website and install it the “classic” way.
Once that is done, it’s time to think of a game plan. Where do you want your GDPR messages to appear? Do you want different messages for different sections of your site?
Using the steps below, you could have different modules. You could have a module for your user registration form, one for contact forms, another one for your mailing list… The options are endless. No matter what choice you’ll make, the steps below will apply.
In our example, we will make a message appear on every page related to User accounts.
Create your ‘Personal Data’ document
Next up is setting up the page that’ll inform visitors about how you are using their data, and what they can do to change (or delete) information. What you write or don’t write in this document is up to you, this article is focused on showing you an easy way to create GDPR notifications anywhere you want.
Simply create a Joomla article, and add the content you want. Then save the content. If needed, you can assign the article to a menu item but for our end goal that isn’t neccessary.
Want to show different messages for different sections for your site? In that case, you could choose to have different articles for each section. However, you could also choose to use a single article and use anchor links instead. We highlight how this is done in the video accompagnying this article.
Create a new module
Next, create a new module in Joomla. This will be used to refer to your “Personal Data” document. Choose the “Custom” type.
Edit the module, and add the message you want to show to your visitor. Don’t forget to add a link to the Personal Data document.
Once you have added the text you want, choose a module position. The available positions will be different from template to template. Choose a position that will make sure that the message is easy to see for visitors.
Make the GDPR message appear where you want
Now that your article informing your visitors is ready, and you created a module that links to that article, it’s time to make the message appear where it’s needed. In the module, go to “Assignments”. Since you have Advanced Module Manager installed, you will see that you have more options.
In our example, we want the message to appear every time you visit a page related to a user account. Perhaps you want the message to appear when another component is loaded, such as a form or a mailing list component.
To make the module appear every time a component is loaded, scroll down to “Components”. Click on “Include” next to Components.
In the “Selection” field, choose where the message has to appear.
In our example, as seen on http://lab30.totalkohost.com, the message will appear on the registration form, the login form and when the user wants to edit his profile.
Once your selection is made, save the module.
Try visiting your website. Once you load a page which contains the component you chose in Advanced Module Manager, your message will appear, making your website compliant with the GDPR demand to inform your visitor of what you are using their personal information for.