Data security is no longer a suggested practice; it’s mandated. In 2018, security breaches compromised more than 4.5 billion data records worldwide. The blame no longer falls on anonymous hackers hiding in dark places on the internet. The EU is holding businesses accountable for protecting consumer data with General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), a law which sets clear guidelines for how companies collect and process data, and outlines the penalties for non-compliance. Unfortunately, stringent GDPR requirements are too much for some businesses. A recent study conducted by the Ponemon Institute found that five critical areas are preventing many companies from complying with the new data protection regulations.
Increasing data protection requires specialised staff to oversee and manage GDPR compliance. Fifty-two per cent of companies don’t have the money to hire qualified personnel to manage data processes. High-level positions include privacy officers, information officers, risk management controllers, legal analysts, and compliance managers. Compliance requires collaboration across multiple divisions within a corporation. For smaller businesses, management may designate one person or a small group to ensure the company meets the stringent data protection protocols GDPR requires.
More than half of non-EU businesses, including those in the US, Japan, and China, believe their company’s data processes or business units are subject to GDPR regulations. Without the proper staffing in place, some businesses look to outsourcing. Third-party consulting firms stand ready to guide companies through the data protection process. Unfortunately, outsourcing data security is expensive, placing a strain on businesses which are unprepared for new contractor or outsourcing costs.
However, GDPR software, such as GDPR365, can ease the process and lighten the expenses, especially when you see that our plans start at 45 pounds a month. Access vendor and client data all in one place, the GDPR365 dashboard. This all-in-one tool helps businesses simplify technology for GDPR compliance.
Most businesses lack the financial resources to upgrade to secure technology for GDPR compliance. Mapping data usage across complex organisational structures is a daunting task. It involves recording data origination, confirming grounds for processing, and tracking the data’s journey through the company, including every point of employee, contractor, or third-party access. Monitoring on this scale requires businesses to engineer a data management platform which reaches every corner of the business, ensuring adequate security measures and encryption.
In the long-term, information security improves data handling processes and customer relationships. In the short-term, such an undertaking requires special tools to implement GDPR data protocols. The immense information technology requirements are staggering, and implementing manual solutions is costly. An automated business process system offers companies the robust IT infrastructure to tackle data requirements for all departments, such as operations, marketing, and customer support. Full compliance may require consolidating systems, introducing interfaces, and creating secure authentication methodology. Businesses are grappling with the high financial costs, which come with incorporating advanced data systems into business processes.
Fifty-three per cent of businesses think that regulations and regulators place unrealistic demands on businesses to protect customer data. All businesses operating within the European Union must comply with GDPR, even if they are headquartered in another country. Europe expects any business processing data for the sale of goods and services to adhere to the requirements of the GDPR law. The law requires businesses to use data for specific purposes, securely maintaining the data and deleting it when the reason for its use expires.
GDPR requires consent to use personal data for legal compliance, contracts, protecting the individual, or completing a task within the scope of services rendered. Under GDPR, consumer protections include the right to object to data collection, restrict processing, and have data deleted. To comply with these regulations, businesses must analyse current processes to determine which areas of the business fall under GDPR regulations and make the necessary changes to ensure compliance.
Taking no action is not an option. Hoping a business doesn’t get caught is not a strategy. As of April 2018, only 15 per cent of companies met GDPR compliance regulations. Some executives are so busy running the business, they lack adequate time to focus on improving data controls for data protection. In fact, more than half of respondents say time is a mitigating factor in maintaining regulatory requirements.
GDPR is the most sweeping change in data protection laws this decade. If a company experiences a data breach, the business only has three days to notify all impacted individuals and the regulatory authorities. The penalties are severe for non-compliance. Non-compliant businesses run the risk of losing up to four per cent of worldwide revenue for neglecting to improve data security. It’s a costly mistake which could hurt both large and small businesses, which don’t take the time to ensure that personal data is protected.
Embracing GDPR may prove beneficial to businesses in the long run. Mapping data flow provides an opportunity to improve processes, systems, and relationships. Data helps businesses to maintain a birds-eye view of each person’s interaction with the company, enhancing interactions with the business at every level. Unfortunately, under GDPR, more data can also potentially mean more problems, especially if a leak exposes customers to fraud or identity theft.
It’s essential to designate a team member or group to train staff on new GDPR protocols. Traditional office events, such as surprise birthday parties are a thing of the past. Under GDPR, lawmakers consider birth dates private data, which businesses can only share after obtaining consent. Even calling in sick is tricky, because disseminating medical data requires explicit consent for each person who receives the personal information. An action as mundane as forwarding a candidate’s resume may require removing identifying information for anonymity.
GDPR is changing the way businesses protect data. Large-scale personal data processing requires technology which ensures information security. It’s not always an easy task for business owners. However, managing and auditing data has never been easier with the right software. GDPR365 gives IT professionals, executives, and compliance managers peace of mind, ensuring that all your data is GDPR compliant and accessible in one simple dashboard.