Committers’ FAQ

General Privacy Questions

What, if we receive a data removal request?

If you receive removal requests for mailing lists or of a generic kind, please forward this message to If you feel the email is of a sensitive kind or did not arrive on a mailing list, please forward this message to

You can reply to the original message that you have forwarded this request, but don’t reply with any further information (confirmation of deletions etc).

In example:

“Dear sender,

we have forwarded your message to Apache Software Foundation privacy committee, which will handle your request. You can always reach out to VP Data Privacy ( or to the comittee directly ( if you have further questions.

Kind regards,”

Project Websites

Can I use Google Analytics?

The Apache Software Foundation discourages the use of Google Analytics.

Court decisions around Google Analytics have changed several times in the past years and made its use uncertain. Several countries in the EU declared Google Analytics cannot be used compliant to the GDPR.

To avoid legal risks, ASF projects shall not use Google Analytics at all.

Instead, the Privacy team has established Matomo for the use of their projects.

Could I use Google Search for my website?

The Apache Software Foundation discourages the embed Google Search on your website. Instead, please use privacy friendly alternatives as PageFind. PageFind will index your statically created website and provide search even on large websites.

Can I use Web Analytics (Matomo)?

Yes: the Privacy Comittee has established a VM running Matomo, a GDPR compliant web analytics software. You can ask for your site id and tracking code at

Please do not install and run your own instances of Matomo.

Can I use Scarf to analyse our downloads?

Yes: Scarf has signed a DPA with us, fully supports the GDPR and was added to our privacy terms. It is possible to use their service.

Can I use another analytics/tracking etc software?

Before using any further tracking software please ask on

Can I use hosted versions of jQuery, images or anything else provided by servers we don’t own?

Please don’t embed any content from servers which we don’t own. Every server or CDN you use will need to be listed in our privacy policy. To avoid constant extensions to our privacy policy, please download the content and make it available from our own hosts. As of now, using third party CDNs does not even impose performance benefits

Can I use Google Fonts?

You can use Google Fonts, but please host the fonts on ASF servers.

ASF projects don’t have any reason to load Google Fonts from Google servers. Even performance wise, there is no reason to use Google CDNs.

To prevent any data being transmitted to a third party, download the fonts and host them with your project website.

Can I embed Google Maps?

Yes, you can use Google Maps, but they should only activate if the user actively wants to use them. Arrange this by showing a placeholder image first and loading the map when the user clicks on the image. Make it clear that users will load a Google Map with their click.

For an idea of how to implement this, please see: YouTube Example 1

Can I embed videos (from YouTube, Vimeo, etc.)?

Yes, you can embed videos on the website, but they should load only after the user actively wants them to load. Arrange this by showing a placeholder image first and loading the video after the user clicks on the image. Make it clear that users who click the image will load a video from a third party.

If you don’t want placeholder images, consider self-hosted videos and using an open source player like Plyr.

For embedding videos, please see: YouTube Example 1 and YouTube Example 2

Can I embed social plugins (in example Like-Buttons)?

Yes, but you can only load them when users actively want them to load. There are many open source solutions to help you manage this, like Shariff.

Can we have an official Facebook fan page?


You cannot run an official ASF Facebook page.

The German Datenschutzkonferenz decided on 2019-04-01 that you cannot fulfill Art. 5 §2. Also, having a fan page would not be compatible with Art. 26.

Can I add a Facebook/Twitter etc custom pixel for creating a custom audience?

No, not without approval from your user.