Your right to limit processing

The right to restrict processing: freezing the use of your data

You have the right to ask an organization to temporarily freeze the use of some of your data. A right that can be valuable in some cases.

What's the point?

The right to have your data restricted is provided by the GDPR. If you dispute the accuracy of the data used by the organization or object to your data being processed, the law allows the organization to verify or review your request for a certain period of time. During this period, you have the option of asking the organization to freeze the use of your data. In other words, the organization will not have to use the data anymore but will have to keep it.

Conversely, you can ask directly for the limitation of certain data in case the organization wants to delete them itself. This will allow you to keep the data for example in order to exercise a right.

How to do it concretely?

1. First assert your rights with the agency

The right to limit your data complements the exercise of your other rights. The organization has one month to respond to your request for rectification or objection and may extend this period if the request is complex or requires further study. It is within this extension period that the organization must freeze the data concerned and no longer use it.

2. If accessing your rights requires additional time for the organization, request your right to limit the processing of your data

Thanks to the parallel exercise of the right to limit the processing of your data:

  • Following your request to delete an image on a social network, the organization will have to unpublish the content while it looks for possible reasons to refuse your request;
  • Following your request for rectification, the e-commerce site will no longer use the erroneous data that you have reported, the time to proceed with the verification of your identity.

3. Keep a copy of your application

This step is essential if you wish to refer the matter to the regulatory authority in the event of a refusal, unsatisfactory response or lack of response.

Are you doing this by mail? Ask for an acknowledgement of receipt that will prove the date of your request.

What are the limits of the law?

The organization must inform you that the limitation on the use of your data is effective.

Once the use of your data has been “frozen”, it can only be used in the following cases:

  • you have given your consent ;
  • for the establishment, exercise or defense of legal claims,
  • for the protection of the rights of another natural or legal person,
  • or for important reasons of public interest of the Union or of a Member State.

Privacy Center

Data Protection Officer

Source : CNIL
Commission Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libertés
To protect personal data, support innovation, preserve individual liberties