A detailed look at Joomla 3.9 Privacy tools suite
Joomla 3.9 stable version was officially released a few days ago, making it the 10th minor version of Joomla 3.x. On another Joomla 3.9 related article, we have reviewed some of this version helpful features. However, you can check the full new features in here.
Despite there are over 250 improvements, but the primary focus of Joomla 3.9 is still on the Privacy Tools Suite system which was developed to support Joomla users to comply with GDPR rule.
In this article, we will look in detail about this new system. How it is going to help you in managing your Joomla site.
Privacy Tools Suites: A closer look
The meaning behind this tool
To truly understand the system, you first must familiar with the GDPR rule.
So what is GDPR?
In short, GDPR or General Data Protection Regulation is a set of rule which set out to be:
- Justify your need for personal data
- Protect the user’s data privacy
- Give user control over their data
- Implement Data Governance and Documentation
It is a law requirement for all website that does business in the European Union (EU) country. Even if your company is outside of the EU like the USA but still has a customer in one of those countries, this rule still applies to you.
It has been in effect since May 25th, 2018, and that is why Joomla team is rush to come up with Privacy Tools Suite for Joomla 3.9. To learn more about GDPR, you can check this link.
In JoomlaShine, we have to adapt to this new regulation by making a new feature that enables template users to control and modify Cookie consent setting.
How to use Privacy Tool Suite in detail
To locate this tool, first, you must go to Users/ Privacy.
Privacy tools suite interface provides the information request summary and a list of recommended actions.
It may seem a little bit confused at first, but don’t worry; we will guide you through step-by-step.
1. Menu in Privacy Tools Suite
- Dashboard: the control panel of Privacy tools suite
- Requests: where admin can create new data request from a user and see some simple status of each request like status, email, request type.
- Capabilities: extra information about how Joomla Core handle the request.
- Consents: List of users who agree with your storing information policy.
2. Total request count dashboard
It shows the total request count, and you can keep track of how many requests are still pending or completed.
3. Status check
There are 4 actions recommended for Joomla user to integrate the privacy tools into their website, and they are:
- Published request from menu item
- Outstanding Urgent Request
- Mail sending enable
For this action to go “Published.” You need to follow these steps:
- Step 1: Go Extensions/ Plugins
- Step 2: Find System - Privacy Consent
- Step 4: Enable the Plug-in.
You can check in the “Consent” menu in Privacy dashboard to check which user has agreed with your website policy.
“System - Privacy Consent” plugin really help Joomla user to comply with GDPR law. It solves the problem to justify your need with your user data and ask for their consent.
However, not every template has supported these plugins fully. You can ask your template provider for further support. On the other hand, all JSN templates are fully compatible and support this plugin.
Published request form menu item
This status will determine if your site has a valid information request form attached to the menu item
Regardless of a menu item being published, a valid URL for the request form is always displayed.
To enable this, you need to follow these steps:
- Step 1: Go to All menu item
- Step 2: Add new menu item
- Step 3: On the Menu item type. Select “Privacy”
You will have three options:
- Confirm request: Display a form to confirm an information request
- Create request: Display a form to submit an information request
- Extend consent: Display a form to extend the privacy consent
Choose “Create request” and your “Published request form menu item” will go published.
The menu intends to reduce your time creating new user request because with this menu, now user can create a new one by themselves.
However, none of the above options are required. A user still can use the simple contact form to ask for their data, but you have to create the request by yourself by using Privacy Tools Suite. This will be mention later in the article.
Depend on actual requests volume; you can decide whether to create this menu or not.
Outstanding Urgent Request
This status checks if any request is pending longer than 14 days (Joomla default). You can change the required days on Global Configuration/Privacy.
Mail Sending Enable
It is Joomla Default to enable sending an email. However, for some reason this status is not checked, then you can always enable mail sending on Global Configuration/server tab/Mail Settings
Joomla Privacy tools suite requires your site capable of sending an email because after user creating data request, the system will need to submit a confirmation token to their email.
Other newly plugin support the privacy tools suite system.
Apart from: “System - privacy consent” plugin, these following plugins are introduced with Joomla 3.9 to support the Privacy tools suite.
- User - Terms and Conditions
- Content - Confirm Consent
By default, all of these plugins are not enabled, you have to go to Extensions/Plugin to enable it first.
User - Terms and conditions
This plugin is very much likely the “System - Privacy Consent.” Instead of inserting Privacy article, you create and add a new term and condition article.
It is used for requesting user’s consent to your website’s term and condition. After enabling this feature, it will display at the end of your user registration form.
Content - Confirm Consent
This plugin will add a required checkbox to your Joomla default contact form. With another contact form builder like JSN UniForm, you can create a checkbox within the extension.
That is all for Privacy Tools Suite feature and its supported plugins. The next part of this blog will focus on the workflow with this system.
Information request workflow in Privacy Component
Creating user information requests is the key feature of the Privacy Tools Suite System.
It’s very easy to use even for Joomla beginner. You have to remember: Create - Confirm - Process (request).
Step 1: Create a request
Both superuser (admin) and registered users can create a new request.
For a new request to be made, you need to know email and the user’s request type (export or remove)
- For admin: Go to User/Privacy/Request then create a new one.
- For user: If your site enables a create request menu, users can create a new request by themselves
Step 2: Confirming request
Once a request has been created, the user who requested it will receive an email containing the token and a link to confirmation form.
Add the token to this confirmation form then this step will be completed.
Note: the token is only valid for 24 hours
Step 3: Process request
As a superuser, you can take action based on what they requested.
- For export request: You can export the data XML file and send it via email
- For removal request: This process will remove the user’s data.
After processing, the request will be marked completed.
Privacy Tools Suite is a very useful feature in Joomla 3.9. We hope with this article, you now have mastered the usage of these tools.
To prepare for the release of Joomla 3.9, we have spent a lot of time testing our templates and extensions for this version. Therefore, you can upgrade your JoomlaShine templates and extension to this version without worry.
What do you think about this new feature? Let us know in the comment!