Your right to data portability (Article 20)


What is the right to data portability?

The right to data portability allows you to receive your personal data in a structured, commonly used and machine-readable format and to move it to another system or company. This is not limited to personal information you provide directly to the company, instead it also includes personal data generated by your activity. The responsibility of transferring data lies with the company handling your data. 

With the right of portability, you can transfer your personal data, that is processed based on consent or contract from one company to another (e.g. switching accounts) without further barriers store your personal data from a company on a private device for your own use.

How do I exercise my right to data portability?

  • You can just send an informal message to the company or use a template asking for the transfer of your data and where you want them to be transferred and/or that you want a copy of that data.
  • Suggest a specific data format that is clear and understandable for you.

What are the consequences of the right to portability?

  • You receive a copy of all your data in a machine-readable format and your data is passed on to the organisation of your choice. 
  • Your data is not automatically deleted and you can still use the services of the company.

Typical Problems

  • Companies are oftentimes not aware of the right to data portability and are inexperienced when it comes to comply with it.
  • There is often no consensus on used data formats and it may be hard to import data in another system. Ideally you can request a specific format that you can actually use.
  • The company refuses direct transfer of your data to another provider because it’s technically not feasible. 

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