What is device fingerprinting?
Why is device fingerprinting used?
We use device fingerprinting to help us extend our historical dataset and develop better attribution models. The primary reason for its usefulness is that it allows for tracking even in cases of arbitrary cookie deletion (for example, by users who wish to free up space and improve browser performance). Fingerprint IDs can thus help to bridge the gaps created by cookie deletion and allow us to create a more robust model of attribution. Note: device fingerprinting technology has no similarity to 3rd party cookies. It does not collect any data about a user’s browsing habits beyond the website it is implemented on and this information is of no interest to us.
How does it work?
Does Device Fingerprinting involve the processing of personal data?
The information collected from device fingerprinting (browser and operating system type and version, screen resolution, lists of fonts, plugins, etc) is combined to generate a unique ID, which represents a single device. This fingerprint ID is not directly personally identifiable. However, it is possible to combine this ID with personally identifiable information from other sources (such as a CRM). Thus, even though the link is indirect, device fingerprinting constitutes personally identifiable information (PII).
Device fingerprinting & GDPR
GDPR compliance is self-certifying and it is up to each company to ensure their own compliance. Based on our own assessment, and from the legal advice we have received, we are confident that our use of device fingerprinting for www.eaglepoint.partners is GDPR compliant, under the basis of legitimate interest. Legitimate interest is one of the 6 legal bases available for the processing of personal information under GDPR (the other 5 being: consent, performance of a contract, legal obligation, vital interests and public interest).
As part of our self-assessment for using device fingerprinting under legitimate interest, we have balanced our business need to better-understand the impact of our marketing channels, along with the rights of the user. Given that this technology is not used to target, track or interrupt the user in any way, and is a technology to assist our understanding of how users arrive on our website, we deem this to be a fair use of the principle of legitimate interest and we use device fingerprinting on our own website.