EU-GDPR-compliant Contact Management in the Cloud

The new EU-GDPR with its tightened requirements on personal data processing will become effective on May 25, 2018. From this point on businesses violating the legal requirements will be facing heavy financial penalties.

The new Fabasoft Cloud app “Contact Management” will allow you to store personal data – for example on customers, employees, suppliers or partners – in the Fabasoft Cloud without the need of a dedicated CRM system and work with this data in an easy, quick and data protection-compliant manner. The Fabasoft “Contact Management” app offers a straightforward rights management system to give individual employees access to different data of a contact, depending on their positions and responsibilities within your organisation. Read more on the Contact Management app.

Managing access rights in the Contacts Configuration

The Contacts Configuration is particularly important with regard to adhering to GDPR, as the contacts administrators can use it to define who may access contact data. In addition, settings for contact metadata are also specified in the app.

The Configuration functions are easily accessible via the Contacts dashboard. There, the “Teams” action is used to determine who may use Contacts Management and who will act as a contacts administrator. Contacts administrators can create so-called contact rooms and modify central settings. The settings comprise for example the types of metadata your users will be allowed to edit while the contact rooms are used to grant access rights to the respective contact data.

High clarity on the Contacts dashboard

The Contacts dashboard provides a quick overview of your Contacts Management and comprises the following areas:

  • Recently Used Contacts
    Shows the last contact persons and organisations you have used.
  • Contact Rooms
    Shows the contact rooms in which the contacts are managed. Each contact room can be set up with its own rights.
  • Adress Lists
    Shows all address lists you have access to.

The Contacts dashboard in the Fabasoft contact management app

Keeping order in the contact room

Keeping order in the contact room The “Contacts Management” app serves to create contacts in a quick, easy and secure manner. So-called “contact rooms”, which are similar to the Teamrooms of the Fabasoft Cloud, are available for the structured administration of contacts and the definition of access rights (in the “Team“ area):

"Contact rooms" in the “Contacts Management” app

Just as in the Fabasoft Cloud, you can assign different rights – either change or read-only rights – to different users or user groups in each contact room. In this way you can assure that only authorised users have access to the data.

Some types of contact data such as the salutation, the address or the phone number can be assigned to different contact rooms. They are therefore only visible to the authorised users of the respective contact rooms. The Fabasoft Cloud’s Contact Management app thus ensures that business-relevant data of employees is accessible to all employees, while private contact data is only available to the HR department.

If you prefer not to store an organisation’s data as a separate object you can also enter the name of the organisation as well as the user’s function while you create the user record itself.
However, there are several advantages to storing organisations as separate objects. The organisation’s address and phone numbers only need to be entered once and are automatically displayed for the respective contact persons.

Special contact properties such as the address, phone numbers or salutations can be assigned to different contact rooms to ensure that they are only available to authorised users.

Creating a new contact in the “Contacts Management” app

Duplicate checks

Whenever a new contact is created, the integrated duplicate check instantly verifies whether it really needs to be created or whether it already exists. To this purpose, the first name, the last name as well as the email address are compared against existing entries. Duplicates as well as diverging sets of data are therefore avoided, while the records are kept up-to-date.

Checks for duplicate records are only executed against the contacts which the user who carries out this action is authorised for.

Check for duplicate records in the “Contacts Management” app

If the check produces a duplicate, a dialogue highlighting the diverging values is displayed. The new value is indicated in yellow. Upon moving the mouse cursor over the respective line, several buttons are presented. You can now adapt the value by choosing “Insert”, “Remove”, “Replace” or “Discard”. If you want to undo your modifications, choose “Restore”. Once you have carried out all changes, choose “Apply Changes” to confirm all modifications in one go. Any value that has been replaced or deleted by your action is crossed out. Choose “Next” to confirm all modifications.

Where are my contacts?

A contact can be used in one or more contact rooms. It always remains in its “source contact room” and is stored as a link in all further contact rooms. If you want to assign a contact to a different contact room, you need to possess all rights to the source contact room as well as all change rights to the target contact room. This approach prevents that data is moved by unauthorised users.

Using address lists for your daily work with contacts

Address lists are perfectly suited for your daily work with contacts. In order to prepare the invitations to an event, you can for example create an address list in a contact room by using the “Create Address List” action. You can also create an address list for contacts that are stored in different contact rooms and export the lists – provided you have the required access rights for these contacts.

To assemble an address list, you either copy existing contacts manually into the list, or determine the contacts dynamically via search criteria. Alternatively, you can import contacts from a Microsoft Excel file (XLSX) or a CSV file into an existing address list while updating the data where applicable.

Structuring address lists hierarchically is a very convenient way to use this feature. You can, for example, include all lists of participants to previous roadshows in the address list to be used for the event “Roadshow new”. Exporting the address list “Roadshow new” will then also include all contacts stored in the subordinate address lists.

To use this address list for a mailing, export the contacts into a CSV file. The columns to be included in the CSV file correspond by default to the column settings of the address list. You therefore only have to adapt the columns of the address list to your requirements. Alternatively, you may also specify the required fields directly in the export dialog. There you also define how to determine the data of those fields that hold several values (e.g. addresses, phone numbers, email addresses or salutations) by prioritising the type of data or the contact rooms.

Deleting contacts

One of the important requirements of EU-GDPR is the necessity to ensure that data is reliably and comprehensively deleted, and that deletions can also be verified. To delete a contact in the Fabasoft Cloud app “Contact Management” and move it to the recycle bin, users need change rights to every contact room the respective contact is linked with. If a contact user does not have the respective rights, a contacts administrator has to become involved.

Removing a contact permanently (i.e. removing it from the recycle bin) requires all rights.

The Fabasoft app “Contact Management” supports you in migrating your contacts from convoluted Excel sheets to an adjusted and organised data structure with a clearly defined rights management, in full compliance with the strict requirements of the EU General Data Protection Regulation and all the options you need to quickly and easily work with your contact data.


Upon request, Fabasoft Cloud Support will activate the features of the “Contact Management” app free of charge for editions Enterprise and higher.

For a detailed description of these features as well as all further enhancements of the Fabasoft Cloud February Release, click HERE.