Privacy Trends to Watch In 2018

privacy trends

Privacy Trends to Watch In 2018

As 2017 closes, we take a look at the privacy trends shaped this year and see what we can expect during 2018.


The crown of privacy trends is most certainly taken by the GDPR. The new EU General Data Protection Regulation will become law starting with the 25th May 2018. Slowly, but certainly, people have become more and more interested in the regulation in the second half of 2017. We expect the interest to only become bigger in the months to come. Will we see a decrease of interest after the 25th of May? Some say yes, but definitely not immediately. Statistics say that there are still many people who barely know anything about the GDPR and out of those who do know, many are still far from being compliant. With all this in mind, we can only expect the GDPR frenzy will keep getting bigger and bigger in 2018.

Privacy by design and by default

Subsequent to the GDPR, but also as a response to the increasing number of data breaches, it is expected that more and more companies will implement privacy by design and by default. In other words, security will come into attention before a data breach happens. For many, this will mean a lot of work – wether we are talking about encryption, authentication or educating employees. All in all, the result for the users should be positive, with more security for their data.

Rights – more important than ever

Rights have always been a big deal, but recent and rapid advances in technology, social media, online marketing and more, has placed the rights of the users in a less than favorable spot. The GDPR places data subjects’ rights on the front line of privacy trends to watch in 2018. Even countries outside of the EU seem to be realizing the importance of giving more rights to data subjects. It is after all, their own data, so the trend seems only natural.

The Internet of Things

Let’s face it, the IoT is here to stay! A while back, we’ve dedicated an article here on the blog to IoT and how it will function with the GDPR. If you’ve missed it, you can read it by clicking this link. Despite all its ups and downs, pros and cons, it is a fact that the IoT is not going anywhere. We can probably safely assume, its usage will only increase in the next year. As far as privacy trends go, advocated of IoT will certainly have a lot of work to do. We are curious to see what 2018 will bring in this area, if a privacy model can be reached so that IoT can be used at its full potential, while also allowing GDPR compliance.


Authentication as we knew it is slowly proving its inefficiency. Passwords are easier and easier to break. Alternatives are coming in various forms. To name a few – fingerprints, face recognition and multi-factor authentication. It is safe to say that MFA is probably your best bet at the moment if you want a strong authentication method. Let’s not forget the recommendations of the GDPR for security – and multi-factor authentication can help many companies on their way to compliance.

Other privacy trends

An interesting area is that of machine learning. The Article 29 Working Party recently released guidelines on automated decision making and profiling. There are some voices concerned with how the guidelines restrict the use of machine learning. We will tackle the subject in a blog post in the future, so if the topic interests you, stay tuned.

On the other hand, ransomware has become a huge factor this year and might shape how we view security and privacy. WannaCry was only the beginning and unless serious measures are taken by users and companies alike, we will see more like it.

Privacy trends around marketing are also evolving and the GDPR has a lot of merit. Marketers will need to change the way in which they collect data, to make sure they are compliant with the regulation.

There are probably more privacy trends that will come into attention during 2018. It is certain that privacy and security are evolving. More and more people are beginning to understand privacy is no game, it is something mandatory.



About the author

Laura Vegh is the Chief Security Officer at, a passwordless security solution. She has a PhD in Systems Engineering, focused on cyber-physical systems security.