Importance of Data Privacy and How to Comply with Regulations

When clients give their personal information to firms, they entrust them with the data that can be used on them if it falls into the wrong hands.

Complying with data privacy regulations is essential not just because sensitive information can be mistreated, but also because there are laws which implement this compliance.

Why is data privacy relevant?

One of the principal reasons why businesses comply with data privacy regulations is to avoid fines. Companies that don’t implement these regulations can be fined up to tens of millions of dollars and even receive a 20-year penalty.

There are many other reasons why you need to take data privacy seriously.

Data breaches could harm your business

When you comply with data privacy regulations, you need to meet specific legal requirements. One of those is implementing strong security safeguards to guarantee the protection of data privacy.

Preserving your customers’ privacy

A data breach can lead to theft of valuable customer data, which can affect the data owners. A hacker can use all of that information to commit crimes such as identity theft and credit card fraud.

Managing and enhancing brand value

You need to avoid data breaches, as they can severely damage a company’s reputation and brand value.

It bears the code of ethics

Most companies have a code of ethics in place. One of those policies states that confidential information needs to be handled responsibly and only used for business purposes.

It provides you a competitive edge

A lot of people are concerned about how their data is being used and handled. If your business complies with data privacy regulations, this will give you an advantage over businesses that don’t take the matter as seriously.

How to ensure your business complies with regulations

If your business hasn’t set up a systematic compliance effort, it’s time to do it right away.

Generate a compliance strategy

You can’t hope to achieve anything without a good overall compliance strategy. This strategy requires to have data privacy compliance at its core while also being comprehensive, measurable, and integrated.

Hire subject matter experts

Since there are plenty of regulations that require compliance, it’s almost unlikely to keep track of them all. That is why there are experts trained in the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) and HIPAA (The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) regulations.

They are called subject matter experts (SMEs) and you can either hire or train one whose only job will be to generate legally compliant policies and practices.

Make a list of all sensitive personal data

Whenever personal information is collected, it requires to be properly tagged and inventoried.

Set policies and procedures for data protection

Businesses that comply with data privacy regulations have to ensure integrity, confidentiality, and data availability with physical, technical, and administrative safeguards.

Have a response plan for dealing with breaches

Even if you adhere to all compliance policies, your system can’t be entirely protected from data breaches and cyber-attacks. That is why businesses need to have an efficient response plan for data breaches as well as employees who are trained on these breach response plans.

Save all documentation

All compliance processes and plans need to have proper documentation. It’s essential to keep this documentation readily available with a good content management system.

Be ready to give proof of compliance

You need to be ready to show proof of compliance with all internal and external queries. Make this proof readily available and easily accessible in the document and report forms to anyone who wants to see it.

Source: Analytics Insights