Under the GDPR, you have the right to request for your data to be deleted. But under the same GDPR, we may refuse such requests if we have a good reason to do so.
We do not provide the means to delete accounts right away on request. We do this because we don’t want to risk bad actors to use our hosting to commit crimes, and then delete all traces of their actions before we, or relevant authorities, have been able to investigate it. This is our Legitimate Interest, under the GDPR.
For this reason, you cannot delete your account, but you can deactivate it. After deactivating it, your account will be deleted after some time, usually after 20 days or 60 days. The same applies for accounts that are suspended, except of course for suspensions that are automatically reactivated after 24 hours, as is the case with your account.
After ALL hosting accounts have been COMPLETELY deleted, you’ll have the opportunity to delete your profile through the client area. This will erase all your data from the client area, and anonymize your forum profile.
We don’t provide the means to fully delete forum profiles. We can legally do this for the following reasons:
- The GDPR governs personal data. The contents of forum posts are not personal information. Any data you have shared in messages is data you have chosen to share publicly.
- In our terms of service, we have a section “CONTRIBUTIONS TO INFINITYFREE” that describes what we do with things that are sent to us, notably including forum posts. This includes publishing those contributions.
- The GDPR does not apply to anonymized data. So anonymizing a profile is a completely valid way to fulfill a data deletion request.
- The GDPR provides some leeway to refuse requests if it causes disproportional damage to us if we were to comply with them. Posts you have chosen to write publicly, linked to an anonymized profile, creates only a very minor breach in privacy. Meanwhile, punching holes in topics that others may be using for reference, does result in substantial damage to us. So we believe that our interests to maintain the integrity of topics weigh more strongly than your interest to have your posts removed.
Just to recap, this is what you can do:
- Wait for your hosting account to be reactivated after the daily limit suspension.
- Deactivate the account yourself.
- Put a reminder in your calendar 61 days from now to delete the profile.
- After those 61 days, login to your client area, verify the accounts are gone, and delete your profile.
That way, your (forum) name, email address, login history will all be erased completely and irrecoverably.