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GDPR-compliant website despite Google Fonts

We all love the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) ... or not. It makes it difficult for website operators and marketers to access the data of potential customers in a legally compliant manner.

And now this: On 20.01.2022, the Munich Regional Court ruled (Ref.: 3 O 17493/20) that the dynamic use of the Google service "Google Fonts" without prior consent represents a data protection violation. Private individuals and lawyers have already taken this as an opportunity to send warning letters to companies that use Google Fonts fonts on their homepage.

What are Google Fonts?

Google Fonts is a library of 1464 open-source font families and APIs for convenient use via CSS and Android. The library also contains charming and beautifully designed icons for common actions and elements. These fonts can be used to design your own website. Many available themes, for example, in WordPress or HubSpot, embed these fonts remotely. In doing so, the user's IP address is forwarded to the USA through the use of Google Fonts on your website. However, since the USA is considered an insecure third country, this data transfer may be illegal if no additional security measures, such as encryption, pseudonymisation or obtaining consent, have been implemented.

In order to use Google Fonts in a legally compliant manner, they should first be deactivated and then integrated locally into the website. Since this can be very time-consuming depending on the CMS and the number of fonts used, it sometimes takes a little help from outside.

How to check your website

With our Google Fonts Checker, you can quickly and easily check your website for a GDPR-compliant integration of the fonts. Simply enter your website URL in the field and click on "Start".

In the event of a faulty integration, you should adapt your website as quickly as possible. This will reduce your risk of a warning notice to a minimum. However, you may not have the skills or the time to do this on your own. We are happy to offer you the opportunity to do this together with us. All you have to do is fill out the form in our Google Fonts Checker.

Procedure in case of a warning

Since the summer of 2022, warnings have been piling up in Germany. Initially, various private individuals sent notices, mainly by email. In autumn 2022, a second wave of warnings was launched, mainly by two law firms. If you are also affected by this, we advise you to adapt your website first and foremost. We advise you to consult with your legal department or lawyer to deal with the warning.

Note: Please bear in mind that this information is non-binding and is not a substitute for legal or tax advice.