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What’s New In WordPress 4.9.6?


With the growing importance of privacy awareness as a result of the new GDPR law that was implemented in the EU on May 25, 2018, WordPress is encouraging its users to take advantage of the new privacy features that are available in their most recent core update. This enforced law ensures that websites and the businesses that run them remain transparent about the personal data that they store, use or share. To help accommodate this transition, WordPress 4.9.6 has been released as a Privacy and Maintenance release.

Under this new update, website owners have the ability to add a designated privacy policy page to their existing website. While a link to this information should be manually added to the footer or navigation menu of your website, it will also be shown on any login or registration pages that your website may have. While not a catch-all solution, this is an important step in ensuring your website is compliant with GDPR regulations.

Website owners will also have access to options under the dashboard Tools menu to export or erase personal data. This new email-based system can be used to confirm any personal data requests or comments that you may receive through your website for users that are registered or unregistered. This export feature allows website owners to export all data collected by WordPress or a participating plugin before erasure.

With WordPress 4.9.6 it is also important to update your plugins, especially if you utilize a plugin that collects data on the users that access your website. A recent addendum to the Privacy section of the WordPress Plugin Handbook gives plugin developers guidelines on updates that must be made to existing plugins and the insights they provide. In many cases, these insights can be copied and then pasted into your privacy policy to complete it and provide a thorough explanation of data collection and storage methods.

To take advantage of the new privacy policy page features you will need to access your WordPress dashboard. Navigate to Settings on the sidebar and hover over it. Once this happens you can then choose Privacy from the pop-out menu that populates. If you have updated to WordPress 4.9.6, the page should look similar to the image below.

WordPress Privacy Page Example

For more information on the WordPress 4.9.6 update and the features it provides, you are encouraged to visit the official download page or visit the codex entry.

If you do not feel confident updating your website yourself or are fearful of potential damages that may occur if it doesn’t go smoothly, the experts at Skynet Solutions are here to help. As the top web design firm in Tulsa, the Skynet Solutions team does these types of updates many times each day and can typically perform them very quickly and efficiently. If you are interested in our WordPress Maintenance plans to ensure your website remains up to date, please contact us today to get started!

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