ANA doesn't have GDPR-compliant website; says it will be up in 'two weeks'

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A screen shot of the ANA's website as it appears to EU visitors.
A screen shot of the ANA's website as it appears to EU visitors. 

It appears the Association of National Advertisers missed the two-year deadline to create a website that's compliant under the European Union's Global Data Protection Regulation, but it says that shouldn't be an issue in about two weeks.

Anyone who visits the organization's website from any of the 28 EU member states will be greeted with the following message:

Due to requirements placed upon ANA as a result of the EU's Global Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), we are not permitting internet traffic to our website from countries within the European Union at this time ... No tracking or performance measurement cookies were served with this page.

GDPR went into effect May 25, and essentially sets guardrails around surveillance marketing and surveillance advertising. The regulation was created so consumers could have more control over their data. Companies found in violation of GDPR face fines of $25 million or 4 percent of global revenue, whichever is larger.

"While it is of course true that the marketing industry is global in nature, the ANA is a U.S.-based trade association and the vast majority of visitors to our website are U.S.-based," a spokesman for the ANA said in an emailed statement. "In fact, our website attracts only a minimal amount of overseas traffic, and since GDPR went into effect we've had less than a dozen requests for access. In any event, within the next two weeks ANA's website will be open to all EU traffic."

Although the ANA is an American-based organization, most of its members have a global presence, or might be traveling overseas to events such as the Cannes International Festival of Creativity.

The ANA's tardiness is surprising. Between GDPR, ePrivacy and data debacles such as Facebook's Cambridge Analytica scandal, it's fair to say the ad industry is very focused on regulations right now, and many companies are looking to their trade groups for guidance.

The Data and Marketing Association, which the ANA will acquire come July 1, does have a functioning website for E.U. visitors.

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