Hmm. Why didn’t I think of that before? No, I have not contacted technical support about this. I should not need to contact technical support to change my e-mail address! Why should I? Most of the websites that require account registrations will rely on using the e-mail address as a username for login, because this is a globally unique identifier, and it’s convenient for password resets and other contact purposes. Nearly all of them will let the account holder/owner/user change the e-mail address and password after registration, and changing the e-mail address in turn changes the username. It has been like this since the dawn of the web. Why should I as a global citizen and Internet user expect any less from a WD website? Only the poorly designed, poorly maintained, and poorly secured websites will not let the account owner change the e-mail address.
Even if I did decide to contact technical support, WD doesn’t recognize website related issues as deserving of their attention! Just look at the categories they present you with in the contact form.
- Warranty & Replacement
- Specification and Documents
- Presales and General Information
- WD Shop
- Delete Western Digital Account (non GDPR)
You have to use the contact form, because they don’t have the courage to step outside their blue box and publicize their e-mail address. So you have to specify why you are contacting them, using the contact form. They didn’t have the capacity to foresee that someone might want to contact them about something else! Where is the Other or Something else category? There is none. That’s another thing you will commonly find on other websites’ contact form.
Furthermore, what’s very odd when you pull up that list of options for contact category, the option “Delete Western Digital Account” has the appendix “non GDPR” in parentheses. Even when you change the region from US to Europe, and the language from English to German! In what way is contacting technical support to request for the account to be deleted not a GDPR right? Particularly after clearly indicating that the region of the requester (data subject) is Europe? This makes me wonder, if this is not the right channel for GDPR requests, then what does a GDPR request form look like at WD? I wonder.
These region and language selections are all made within the same contact form. In fact, region and language is a compound choice (culture code) that’s made in a single step, a la “English (US)”.
Changing region and language from US and English to Europe and English, to German [implying Germany, which is a country in Europe and a member of EU], changes the domain name from
support-de.wd.com. Although visually similar and in some cases identical, these are different sites where different policies may apply. But in a match against a law, a policy always loses, and GDPR applies to US companies that handle personal information of EU citizens.
Overall, this leaves me with an impression of WD as a software weak company that’s unenthusiastic about the web and all things related to software. If anyone is in doubt, the recent scandal with WD My Cloud should clear all doubts about that. As another example, it’s still not possible to log in or to buy anything at the WD Shop after the My Cloud incident. I asked the sales team by chat today and was told to get back later, as there is no estimate on when the site will be fully operational again.
As often is the case with these big companies, they are too big to serve the little guy, to do the right thing and make some good stuff, software wise in this case. They are much more concerned about investor earnings. The only reason this forum even works is because it’s made by a third party, and one of the best there is in this category (Discourse by Jeff Atwood and the team).