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Privacy-friendly analytics

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Project description


As we strive to enhance data analytics while respecting user privacy, we are considering the adoption of privacy-friendly and consent-free tracking methods. Such methods align with the growing demand for user privacy and provide us with accurate, comprehensive data by increasing user engagement with analytics.
According to European Data Protection Authorities in several countries, the usage of Google Analytics is considered illegal and the recommendation is to stop using it. This is of course also a compelling argument for this shift.

Advantages of Privacy-Friendly Tracking

Privacy-friendly tracking can offer numerous benefits:
Improved Data Quality: By avoiding data gaps that arise from users opting out of tracking, we can achieve higher data quality.
Better User Experience: Eliminating consent pop-ups can lead to a smoother, uninterrupted user interaction with our services.
Regulatory Compliance: Embracing privacy-friendly practices can help in adhering to data protection laws, like the GDPR, and addressing concerns related to international data transfers.

Choosing Privacy-Focused Analytics Tools

Privacy-focused analytics tools provide several key benefits:
Data Sovereignty: These tools ensure that data remains under our control, enhancing data security.
Complete Data Utilization: They enable the use of all collected data, ensuring more accurate reporting.
Customization Options: Open-source platforms allow for customization to meet specific analytics needs.
Data Portability: Many tools support the import of historical analytics data.

Challenges in Implementing Privacy-Friendly Analytics

Transitioning to privacy-friendly analytics tools also presents challenges:
Technical Considerations: Self-hosted solutions may require technical expertise for setup and ongoing maintenance.
Data Migration Concerns: Moving historical data may face technical barriers and impact data continuity.
Integration Limitations: There may be limited integration with certain external services, which could impact some functionalities.
Data Detail Reduction: Privacy-friendly tracking may reduce the level of data granularity available, but this is often balanced by the value of increased data integrity and user trust.


In transitioning to privacy-friendly analytics, we prioritize a holistic understanding of user interactions over individual user tracking. This shift means that certain types of data will no longer be collected:
Individual User Profiles: Detailed personal information and user-specific behavior tracking.
Session Replays: Recordings of individual user sessions that provide granular behavioral insights.
Cross-Domain User Journeys: The ability to track users’ paths across different websites and services.
While such data can be insightful, the analytical needs of the ClimateView Dashboard are adequately met by aggregate information and general usage trends. The data we gather from privacy-friendly analytics offers a comprehensive view of user engagement as a whole, which is essential for our operations. This approach ensures that we capture the collective behavior of our audience, providing a complete picture that informs our decision-making processes and service improvements without relying on the specifics of individual user data.

Next Steps

: Determine the necessary data anonymization to comply with international privacy standards.
: Evaluate and choose an appropriate analytics tool that aligns with our need for comprehensive but privacy-respecting data collection, as an alternative to Google Analytics.
Proof-Of-Concept implementation of selected tool (1 sprint)
Migrate Analytics Data from GA
Fine-tuning and go-live with new tool
Deprovision Google Analytics

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