What is General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR)?

At its core, GDPR is a new set of rules designed to give EU citizens more control over their personal data. Fundamentally, almost every aspect of our lives revolves around data. From social media companies, to banks, retailers, hotels, service providers, hospitals, manufacturers, IT companies and governments almost every service we use involves the collection and analysis of our personal data. Your name, address, credit card number and more all collected, analysed and, perhaps most importantly, stored by organizations.

What is GDPR Compliance and how does it affect you?

Data breaches inevitably happen. Information gets lost, stolen or otherwise released into the hands of people who were never intended to see it and those people often have malicious intent. Under the terms of GDPR, not only will organizations have to ensure that personal data is gathered legally and under strict conditions, but those who collect and manage it will be obliged to protect it from misuse and exploitation, as well as to respect the rights of data owners – or face penalties for not doing so.

Does GDPR apply to Companies outside the EU?

GDPR Impact for Non-EU Companies. The regulation will affect firms both inside and outside of the EU. In fact, any company dealing with EU businesses, residents, or citizens data will have to comply with the GDPR.

Ignorance is not a defence

2019 will see the biggest change in data protection and privacy for decades and will have a global impact on companies of all sizes, public sector and Government organisations, charities, professional bodies and associations. With stricter rules and greater consumer/business awareness of rights, privacy has become the “new normal” for all businesses. But, how does privacy become embedded in your business strategy and part of your business model? GDPR, the General Data Protection Regulation is setting the tone for data protection and although the enforcement date was May 25th 2018 the regulators accept that many organisations struggle to be fully compliant by then. 

GDPR is complex and everyone’s requirements will be different but it’s imperative that everyone is aware of their responsibilities. Organisations that have done nothing will have little in the way of a defence but those that can demonstrate a ‘commitment’ and show that reasonable steps are being taken to improve processes are likely be looked on more positively. There are steps that can be taken to minimize risk and the first steps are awareness, education, and implementation of improved data protection processes and the impact of GDPR.