With policymakers in China yet to reach a consensus on how to protect consumer privacy, one consultant argues they should look to the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) for guidance rather than the EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Both have the same ultimate goals, but, notes Sidney Song, founder of Fenxi Data and Publicis Media China consultant, GDPR requires companies to obtain the explicit consent of consumers to collect personal data while the CCPA is an opt-out system by default.

The GDPR approach can be “dangerous” in China, he told WARC. “If the collection of every data point has to be approved by the consumer, it is my worry that advertisements will return to the era of print media in the past.”

He further maintained that the definition of personal information in the EU is “too broad” – unlike the CCPA – with identifiers that point to an individual, a device, or an ID, and “can be reasonably connected”.

“If China takes the GDPR route, I think it will cause a decrease of innovation in the country,” he added. (For more, read the full article: Walking a tightrope between privacy and personalisation in China.)

Given the country’s embrace of the digital world, it is sometimes assumed that privacy issues are not a major concern for Chinese consumers, but recent research from Publicis Media China and Fudan University shows that their willingness to share information is dependent on the type of information being asked for.

In a survey based on 10,000 responses, Chinese consumers were most likely to complete all fields when basic demographic or behavioural information was requested of them; they were most afraid of highly-sensitive biological or income data being compromised.

So, they’re not actually very different from consumers elsewhere. And like them, as privacy gets more important, it will be incorporated into their decision-making process and value assessment. 

Sourced from WARC