Most organisations should have heard about the changes to data protection rules -GDPR- which are being introduced on 25 May 2018. On the face of it the changes appear to be another layer of bureaucracy however they provide you with an opportunity to review and improve systems and processes.
The new regulations, which form part of the new Data Protection bill, offer greater clarity and in some cases simplify the position on the processing of personal data. This provides greater protection for individuals and at the same time greater clarity for organisations on how to approach this issue.
The need for accurate data is essential for compliance. Better data will lead to better marketing and you can target your marketing more effectively if you are confident that your data is accurate.
The new regulations are also an opportunity to have a “spring clean” on your data – get rid of the rubbish and reduce the amount of data that you are holding and backing up. Storage, whether it is electronic or in hard copy, is expensive and here is an opportunity to have a purge and actually save money.
Greater clarity over the GDPR regulations can also reduce risk for your organisation.
The increase in fines for non-compliance is significant however there is greater structure to the regulations and the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) is producing guidance regularly to assist organisations.
Finally the changes provide an opportunity to get greater control over your data processing. Individuals have to opt in rather than opt out of you processing their personal data. There is also more responsibility on data controllers when they transfer data to third parties who will process that data on their behalf. This could be the time to review existing arrangements and introduce/revise contractual arrangements with these third parties to be clear about their responsibilities when handling your data.
The new regulations are going to mean a lot of work for organisations, but with planning you can review and improve business processes.