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News & Updates

News & Updates

GDPR - General Data Protection Regulation for the EU

posted on Apr 19, 2018

The EU is bringing in new privacy regulation on May 25 – the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation). These laws pertain to EU citizens and any organizations that collect or process data on EU citizens. If your membership database includes EU citizens, you will want to understand the GDPR, how it affects you, and what your obligations as a data controller are.

Firstly, you must obtain consent to track personal information about individuals. Normally this is not a big deal, because people who actively fill out forms to apply for membership or other website services are generally well aware of what they are signing up for. But if you intend to use that data for other purposes, or if you have old historical data in your database that was not collected in such circumstances, or you are creating records yourself to track information about people without their knowledge, then the situation is not so clear. If you have a privacy policy or terms of usage, they should state what information you collect and what you are using it for in simple, unambiguous language. If you find that you have old data in your records for which you do not have consent to use for your current purposes, that data should be removed.

Even in cases where you have collected personal data with proper consent, the GDPR makes it clear that people can withdraw their consent, and you have to respect their wishes in that regard. The GDPR even allows them to request that you delete their personal data – this is called their right to be forgotten. If you receive such a request, you should know how to find their data records and either:

  • delete the records entirely
  • if you cannot delete the records, blank the personal data fields
  • if you cannot blank the fields (for example, if it is a required field), then anonymize the data (change it to something that is no longer personally identifying)

Note that when removing data in this way, it is important to distinguish between their personal data, and your organization’s business records. You do not need to eliminate all traces of their existence, only the personal data that you do not require to do your own work. For example, if the individual made a purchase from you, the records of that purchase are your business records, and it is reasonable to keep them on file for your own accounting. But if you are tracking personal information like photographs, birthdates, or education history, and those data are not pertinent to your organization's ongoing work, then that data should be removed on request.

Individuals have a right to know what information you collect about them. If the person is a current member or guest on your system, they may already be able to access their profile, which shows most of the data that is collected. If they have been archived or do not otherwise have a login, and they request a copy of the data you have on file about them, you should:

  • verify that you are releasing the data to the person in question (sending it to an address that you already have on file for them is a reasonable approach)
  • use your Report Builder for Members to build a custom report for just that member. Select as many fields to display as are likely to be relevant, and add a single condition to select information only where member_id = that member’s ID.
  • export the results of that report, and send it to the person
  • you can also go to the Payments module, pull up their account history, and email their account statement, so they can see their purchase history with the organization.

As noted above, they can request that you delete personal profile data, but their purchase history is part of your accounting records, and you can retain that information if you wish. Contact information is in a grey area. Collecting billing contact information from your customers is a reasonable and normal part of doing business. But not all of that contact information necessarily needs to be retained, and you may also have additional non-billing contact records that are not really part of their purchase history. So it may nonetheless be necessary to clean out contact information that is not needed for the purposes of archiving your sales history.

Read more about the GDPR here.

Version 3.8.3 released

posted on Feb 21, 2013
Version 3.8.3 of ExSite was placed into the downloads area today. New features in this release:
  • new admin interface look-and-feel
  • more configurable webtop: default section; more categories (Social, Events, E-commerce)
  • datepicker integration
  • alias pages allow for placing pages in several parts of your site map
  • new anti-robot tools
  • bad URL handling
  • search index improvements
  • improved captcha refresh
  • higher performance dynamic pages
The following plug-ins have important updates as well:
  • Event Calendar: improved iCal support; combine calendars; copy events
  • Event Registration: tools for managing conference sessions, classes, and overlapping activities; conference fee setup wizard; conference merchandise sales; customizable notifications
  • Address Book: new tools for uploading and managing contact lists; upload members, accounts
  • Tags: RSS feeds for each keyword
  • Meta: customize your metadata
  • E-Zines & Blogs: combined RSS feeds for recent posts, combined zines; cross-posting to multiple zines
  • Web Forms: filter responses by dates and answers given
Download it now from the downloads area!

Internet Explorer 6 - It's Time to Say Goodbye

posted on Mar 23, 2011

Exware Solutions has joined the world-wide movement to phase out usage of the old Internet Explorer 6 web browser. Newer browsers are faster, safer and provide a much better browsing experience. Even Microsoft is encouraging users to switch away from IE6, and the software giant has created a website to spread that message. In North America, IE6 usage is down to around 3% of all browsers, and falling.

Exware will continue to ensure that our client websites remain functional for IE6 users, however we are dropping IE6 from our list of fully supported browsers. This means that the look and feel of some websites may differ in IE6 compared with newer browser, and visual imperfections may be present due to IE6's more primitive feature set and lack of support for modern web standards.

This step forward will open the door for better website features in the future, while reducing development time. And as more and more users move away from IE6, support issues will be reduced.

If you have any questions or concerns, please email us at


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