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The Privacy Benefits That GA4 Brings to Banking

The transition to Google Analytics 4 (GA4) marches on, and every industry is gearing up for the changeover that will completely be in place by next year. The financial sector is especially set to benefit from these changes; particularly GA4’s new privacy controls, which will give an added sense of security to bankers, financial advisors—and of course, their clients.

Privacy concerns that individuals had, and businesses have—Google [GA4] is allowing us to solve them, not only in the now but predicting in the future some of the laws and regulations that might occur.

Jim Pasqualone, Sr. Director of Digital Growth at EGC

Yes, privacy is the main concern of every person and industry. In a time where everything from identity theft to ad fraud is widespread, fear and preoccupation about what online information is available—and vulnerable—is high.

Privacy concerns versus convenience in banking

As reported in ABA Bank Marketing, nearly half of Internet users in the U.S. consider it nearly impossible to protect online privacy, while close to three-quarters are willing to risk this for the sake of convenience. This leaves marketers for financial institutions with the difficult double act of making privacy a priority and staying compliant while also offering easy-to-access banking services. Enter the privacy controls of GA4 to accommodate these concerns…

The financial plan of action for migrating to GA4

As banks and other financial institutions make the gradual migration to GA4, they have been double checking how the different rules and controls that were in place will be altered and possibly affected once this changeover has been completed. Every industry is undergoing this effort due to the differences between the current Universal Analytics (UA) and GA4. For example, marketers are not allowed to send or store an individual’s personal information—ranging from names to passwords, among other data—in Google Analytics 4. Extending this privacy protection in GA4, IP addresses will not be collected.

Other measures that financial institutions should follow…

In order to maximize privacy for customers, other tasks that banks and financial institutions should be aware of include:

  • Flexible periods of time for user-level data retention: Under GA4, user-level data will default to expire after period of two months. Marketers can adjust this, however, to a maximum of 14 months. This is an important consideration when taking campaign measurement into account.
  • Staying proactive and granting the customer’s wishes: This may seem obvious, but in the event, for example, a customer does not want their information available in a particular system, GA4 readily enables marketers to remove a particular User ID upon request.
  • Consent management: Under the “Consent Mode” of GA4, every method of tracking can be adjusted and controlled based on the requests and preferences of customers.
  • Location-specific (and sensitive) data collection: Different countries and states have different regulations regarding the collection of data. The controls of GA4 are granular and localized in a way that honors a region’s regulations while also maintaining the ability to measure performance.
  • Updating and providing transparency for privacy policies: Banks and financial institutions should alert their customers whenever a change is made to their specific privacy policies. Again, this may seem obvious, but the change to GA4 makes this practice particularly important.

The EGC Group is keeping track of Google’s “sunsetting” of Universal Analytics and transformation to GA4. If you have any questions or concerns regarding GA4 and how to adjust, get in touch with us.

Are you a financial professional? Learn more about EGC’s expertise in helping financial institutions get noticed.