Data protection and privacy are important, and the European Union (EU) put the law into practice to emphasize it. To that end, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is something that just about everyone should follow. It is not just because it is the ideal system of data protection and handling, but rather, it is required by law.
In the modern age where everything is done online, if you have a business, the GDPR probably applies to you. In this content piece, we will look at exactly how it applies to you, from the perspective of the company or business.
The GDPR Legislation
The GDPR legislation focuses on protecting personal data, ensuring privacy, and providing consumers with the right to control their data. Companies are obligated to follow this legislation and provide consumers with what they request about their data.
To that end, organizations have to know where their GDPR obligations begin, and how they have to act on them.
First Things First – The GDPR is Not Optional
The GDPR is not a policy that can be followed after you set up all your operations. The legislation permits organizations to build their infrastructure, data collection procedures, data processing, etc., with privacy and security in mind.
With its passing in 2016, the law was given a grace period before it came into full effect, even though many organizations still struggle to follow it. The GDPR is not an optional policy. It is legislation, one that needs to be followed, or else hefty fines and penalties follow. This penalty starts from 10-20 million euros to 2% of an organization’s entire turnover of the previous year, whichever figure is the highest.
Even if an organization stores all its data on the cloud via Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Service (AWS), or any other cloud provider, they are still obligated to follow privacy laws and are not exempt from them.
Data Privacy Should be the Default Focus, Not the Alternative
As the GDPR is compulsory, so is an ‘opt-in’ approach to data privacy. That means consumers must consent to their data being collected before any organization is allowed to collect any data. Companies cannot provide users a notice to ‘opt out of data collection,’ and instead, allow no data collection until the consumer agrees.
At the same time, all consumers have a ‘right to be forgotten,’ meaning that even if they consent to their data being collected, they can withdraw that consent at any point in time, and the organization must comply with that directive.
If Consumers Demand Changes to their Data, You Have to Make Them
The GDPR places plenty of rights in the hands of individual consumers. Consumers have the right to request changes to their data, restrictions in collection, rectification, removal, and more. Organizations cannot hide the data they have, and have to disclose all the user data they collect.
Moreover, organizations cannot delay or ignore these requests for changes either. They are obligated to respond and act according to what the user has requested.
You are Responsible for Reporting Your Blunders on Time
A rather important factor is also the limitation placed on time. If consumer data is compromised, the company has to report it within 3 days. Both customers and the relevant authorities have to be informed of these incidents.
Organizations that do not report data breaches on time have to pay hefty fines and can face much worse if the behavior continues.
The GDPR Does Not Like Legalese
The GDPR Applies to Your Business
It almost does not matter where you are located. If you are providing any services, offline or online, to customers in the EU, the GDPR applies to you. Therefore, as a general rule, organizations have to follow this policy and have to ensure that their employees do too.
Organizations have to hold regular GDPR training sessions for their employees, keep them up to date on the legislation, and ensure that both the data handlers and processors follow this law.
The General Data Protection Regular (GDPR) is a complicated and stringent legislation. It requires that organizations handle user data more responsibly, conduct any changes the user requests, and operate knowing that the user can withdraw their consent at any time.
This ‘privacy-first’ focus is something that cannot be considered optional, and more organizations need to be mindful of the GDPR and its application to their core business practices.