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GDPR in Marketing Research: Remove respondent data automatically upon completing a survey

Discover Nebu Dub InterViewer functionalities supporting clients in complying with the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation.)

GDPR in Marketing Research: Remove respondent data automatically upon completing a survey

Jan Raaphorst
Posted on 19 March 2018 in GDPR
by Jan Raaphorst
4 min

In the previous two articles posted in the GDPR category on Nebu's blog, we've covered the high-level overview of what the GDPR requirements and principles are. Now, let's dive into more specific, product-driven details.

More and more, clients ask us about Nebu Dub InterViewer's functionalities supporting them in complying with the upcoming GDPR legislation. One of the frequently reoccurring inquiries concerns removing respondent data from the project. 

When the respondent completed the interview, and a project is not a longitudinal study, often there is no use anymore for the client to keep the respondent data. In the light of GDPR removing or anonymizing that data even becomes a necessity.


In such case, it makes sense that the respondent data is 'disconnected' from the answers by removing the personally identifiable information from the sample data. Let's see how Nebu Dub InterViewer handles that for you.

Indeed, the functionality we're introducing in this blog post is one of key elements of complying with the GDPR as it fulfils four of six GDPR principles. Having an ability to set up an automated flow on how sample data will be processed in a project upfront will help fieldwork and marketing researchers adhere to:

  • Purpose of limitations principle by assuring that sample data will be used only for the initial purpose a respondent actively agreed upon
  • Data minimization principle by preventing the company from "harvesting" data for irrelevant purposes
  • Accuracy principle by supporting Nebu Dub InterViewer users with ensuring that inaccurate data is deleted
  • Storage limitation principle by helping  to make sure that sample data won’t be kept longer than necessary or the legally required time

from personal to annonymised data.pngFrom personal to anonymized data (a figure from the paper "General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Guidance Note for the Research Sector: Appropriate use of different legal bases under the GDPR" prepared by EFAMRO and ESOMAR and published in June 2017.)

Nebu Dub InterViewer provides data owners with two simple functionalities to be able to remove sensitive/personal information from the sample of projects, especially after the respondent completed the interview. There are two settings available in the sample management module you can use to clear respondents' personal data.

The first one will ensure the respondent's personally identifiable data collected in 'Name', 'Phone number', 'Company name', 'Email', 'Username', 'Password' fields is automatically deleted from the sample when it has become complete. The other one will delete any other sample information. For example, you can type in 'Fax,Info' to get the sample properties named "Fax" and "Info" also cleared when the respondent completes an interview.

If you are a Nebu DubInterViewer user and would like to get a more detailed, technical explanation, please read this article. (Please note that you have to be a registered Nebu user in order to be able to access this article.)


Jan Raaphorst.pngJan Raaphorst was the first Nebu employee ever. Right after graduating his Informatics study in The Hague, he joined Nebu in December 1994. Starting as a software developer, he was intensively involved in the "birth" of Nebu Dub InterViewer

Now, he enjoys his role as a Senior Technical Account Manager. He combines many aspects of his knowledge and skills to support clients who face complex or unusual challenges. Also, he is the key figure with regards to prioritizing developments in Dub InterViewer.

He is the former national record holder in athletics (men's 4x800m relay indoor), "but that was around 30 kilos ago" - quoting him. Since 5 years he lives in Germany in a rural area, at the edge of the forest. He loves to solve puzzles, which explains his hobbies: playing chess, bridge and escape room adventures. And we pray that he never fails in his escape adventures.

If you would like to ask an expert a GDPR related question, please submit it via the form on the right.


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