Definition of "User"

This article defines the term „User“ and their

  • roles,
  • main uses cases,
  • benefits and
  • restricitions

within the privact framework.


A user is any living natural person who uses privact compliant software and as such has agreed to the terms and conditions of the privact framework.


A user assumes various fundamental roles within the privact framework:

Data provider

The user is the owner of her personal data. Data can either be provided directly by the user or generated by services with the user’s permission.

Data owner

In the role of the data owner, the user can control access to her data and define what can be done with it.

Service user

One typical use case of interaction with privact for a user, is through privact compliant apps or services, which can use the personal data for their purposes. There are terms and conditions of usage between the user and the service, which have to be privact compliant. These may interact with the permission about personal data usage and will be a typical way of granting access.

Survey participant

privact allows for limited access to personal data for anonymized and statistical surveys. The user can participate. For surveys that only use existing data, this process will not require any user interaction, as long as the survey as such fulfills the user provided permission (e.g. research is ok). Some service may require interactions, e.g. polls, for which the user has the option of participating or not.

This definition does allow for a citizen to be a user and assume different roles too. A citizen may be a survey issuer for example, but has to follow the governance for survey issuers. See there.

Main Use Cases

Initial setup

The typical first interaction would be, if a user signs up to some service or app and agrees to its terms and conditions of usage. This would initiate the local database setup and start filling the database with person data.


The user controls, which data exists and whom she has granted what kind of access. She can change access rights trough some simple user interface, however, this may lead to some services not working anymore (which is intentional, not a bug).

Survey participation

Survey mostly run automatic. In some cases, user interaction may be required (e.g.). A notification should ask the user in those cases, if she is willing to participate.


The user regains control over her data. She has full transparency about what data exists and who has access to it. It ensures, innovation can be nurtured by anonymized data and allows for services which can be better tailored to the user’s needs.

By granting limited access to user’s personal data, the user is also helping to bring transparency about advances towards CO2 neutrality and motivates entities to actually achieve the goal.


Services can get a very broad access to user’s data, if she agrees. While any service must be privact compliant and is regularly audited for it, privact can not ensure at all times that service and compliant. Thus the user has to be careful about granting permissions.

When collecting survey data, privat will act as a proxy, collecting the survey data and only publishing anonymized and statistical data. The user has to trust privact in the proper handling oft he proxy server.