Today’s topic is Personally Identifiable Information, PII for short.
Google’s Terms of Service state that you may not store personally identifiable data in Google Analytics. This includes names, addresses, email addresses, IP addresses, financial data that could identify someone, government or tax ID numbers etc.
Essentially they don’t want to be responsible for a breach of data, especially if it led to legal consequences. Many countries have data security laws and there can be large fines for breaches of PII, especially if it is relating to personal information such as medical, financial, criminal or relating to children.
Google can find this data pretty easily with automated systems and can close your account if you are found to be in breach.
This is an area where it is best to just do the right thing and keep it out of your Google Analytics account in the first place.
Here’s a video where I describe the problem, common causes, and how to resolve it. Plus a cameo appearance from my cat:
If you’re about to roll out a campaign at scale and you suspect you have PII in your data, you should resolve it straight away before you are flagged as a data security risk by Google.
I do hope that is helpful to you. If you are needing help preventing PII from entering Google Analytics then please reach out to me.