The GDPR starts being enforceable in a week. The general state of people who run websites seems to be, essentially, “I am freaking out, man”. But for many of these websites, there’s an easy solution.

Just don’t log any PII. Shocking, I know.

On GDPR specifically

First, read this by Mattheij:

If you’re interested in GDPR specifically, this “plain-english” summary of the whole law is great: GDPR requirements list in plain english.

The hyperbole around “my tiny website can be fined two million euros” is silly. The best charitable explanation I’ve read yet comes from this great HN comment:

The rest of the hyperbole comes from a number of folks that only now realize that should you be on the internet and choose to not abide by the laws of a particular country, you might get sued in that country. It’s true! And yet, it’s not the GDPR’s doing: this has always been the case. Welcome to being a grownup in the world.

Do you still think “but mah daaataaa”?

Data really is a liability

Read these three pieces by Cegłowski:

Here’s how I solve the problem

In my specific case, the important question was: Do I really need those logs? What do I use them for? (as opposed to “what do I fantasize about eventually using them for, one day, when I finally have all that spare time I’d like to have?”)

It turns out that I don’t actually need them, and the last time I used the logs (many years ago), what I needed them for didn’t require any IP information. I don’t run any analytics on this site now. I just didn’t have a defensible use case for it.

I run nginx, so I configured it to not store IP or user agent information in my logs. It turns out that nginx naturally stores IP information in its error logs, and that cannot be changed. So I just don’t store error logs (they go straight to /dev/null).

(I’m not a lawyer. This isn’t legal advice. Don’t be an idiot.)