Key Terms of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

At the beginning of this document, DPP provided information on what the concept of “personal data” and its protection is all about. The following will provide you with some additional details about certain key terminology, which is used throughout this document and which is important to properly learn about your rights.

  1. The term “processing” means any operation or set of operations which is performed on personal data or on sets of personal data, whether or not by automated means, such as collection, recording, organization, structuring, storage, adaptation or alteration, retrieval, consultation, use, disclosure by transmission, dissemination or otherwise making available, alignment or combination, restriction, erasure or destruction.
  2. The term “restriction of processing” means the marking of stored personal data with the aim of limiting their processing in the future. 
  3. The term “profiling” re means any form of automated processing of personal data consisting of the use of personal data to evaluate certain personal aspects relating to a natural person, in particular to analyze or predict aspects concerning that natural person's performance at work, economic situation, health, personal preferences, interests, reliability, behaviour, location or movements.
  4. The term “pseudonymization” means the processing of personal data in such a manner that the personal data can no longer be attributed to a specific data subject without the use of additional information, provided that such additional information is kept separately and is subject to technical and organizational measures to ensure that the personal data are not attributed to an identified or identifiable natural person.
  5. The term “anonymization” refers to the processing of personal data in such a way that after anonymization, the data can no longer be associated with a specific data subject or physical individual in any way. Anonymization must be irreversible.
  6. The term “Controller” means the natural or legal person, public authority, agency or other body which, alone or jointly with others, determines the purposes and means of the processing of personal data; where the purposes and means of such processing are determined by Union or Member State law, the controller or the specific criteria for its nomination may be provided for by Union or Member State law.
  7. The term “processor” means a natural or legal person, public authority, agency or other body which processes personal data on behalf of the controller.
  8. The term "recipient" means a natural or legal person, public authority, agency or another body, to which the personal data are disclosed, whether a third party or not. However, public authorities which may receive personal data in the framework of a particular inquiry in accordance with Union or Member State law shall not be regarded as recipients; the processing of those data by those public authorities shall be in compliance with the applicable data protection rules according to the purposes of the processing.
  9. The term "personal data breach" means a breach of security leading to the accidental or unlawful destruction, loss, alteration, unauthorized disclosure of, or access to, personal data transmitted, stored or otherwise processed.