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Data privacy – a Daunting Opportunity

How to Protect Data Privacy in 2022

Starting up a data privacy program with privacy policies that meet legally enforceable data compliance requirements is daunting. That is especially true if you don’t have a DPO (data privacy officer) on your payroll. And for the SMBs and the MSPs and MSSPs that serve them that is likely to be the case.

In many respects, data privacy is onerous, but it is increasingly regarded as a basic human right. There are many rules. local, federal, global, industry related, market related etc.. Some overlap, some contradict and it is very hard to find a single set of rules that address all.

The obligation to protect data privacy and practice 24/7 privacy compliance is clear, but the specific requirements for individual businesses and organizations can be complex. A major issue for CEOs is how to ensure data protection and avoid the devastating financial liabilities that follow data breaches. Once you have found a comprehensive data protection solution, you will need to continually upgrade it to face emerging threats.

What is Data Privacy?

Data privacy is the basic requirement to safeguard confidential data and deny it to unauthorized third parties. Sensitive data that requires encryption and protection may include PII (personally identifiable information) and other data regulated under the GDPR. This can include sensitive medical records, clients’ financial details and personal details, or any information about members of the public that is stored by companies, government departments and professional bodies.

One of the most challenging issues facing CEOs today is how to solve data privacy issues. A failure to understand how to protect data privacy is a major career foul in any industry. Most CEOs are dependent on IT managers or outside consultants and often lack the means to evaluate the accuracy and value of their professional advice.

How to Protect Data Privacy

Despite its complexities, data protection needn’t be daunting. There are some common starting points for any effective data protection solution. When considering how to ensure data protection, each company that processes and/or stores regulated data must:

1. Analyze all the data that the company processes and stores – what data requires oversight? Private data, controlled data, entrusted data and others.

2. Understand what, and how much, of that regulated data passes or resides on workstations and apps.

3. Understand who owns the data? To whom does the liability associated with processing or storing the data belong.

4. Understand to whom the data flow downstream. Does the data return to the owner (or its origination point) or does it flow to another vendor.

When your goal is to protect data privacy, and formulate a data protection solution these four steps will give you a basic overview of the risks and vulnerabilities that you need to address.

Read our related blog post on a practical approach to data privacy and compliance

How to Solve Data Privacy Issues

You can simplify the process of analyzing your systems and identifying sensitive data with an automated audit. Actifile can scan all your systems, including remote devices, map your data, identify potential risks, calculate financial liabilities and penalties for data breaches.

Actifile will then present the results in a convenient report that provides clear guidance on how to solve data privacy issues. Actifile software places data privacy and data protection at your fingertips. Actifile users can remediate all existing issues and protect data privacy with a single click of their mouse.

A digital audit is the first concrete step to achieving data security compliance. Knowledge of the risks allows a tailored data protection solution. CEOs and IT managers who achieve and maintain data privacy compliance are free to focus on strategic growth.

Taking the time to decide how to protect data privacy is a lot cheaper than dealing with data breach compliance after the fact. An estimated 60% of businesses that fail to protect data privacy and suffer data breaches subsequently close. Regulatory bodies and authorities are utterly serious about data protection.

Regulators are willing to impose fines and penalties that can be crippling to businesses. Businesses also face loss of reputation - particularly if negative publicity goes viral on social media. In competitive industries, clients are unlikely to return once compromised by an avoidable data breach.

You may also be interested in: Insider Threat at The Age of No Perimeter Privacy Concerns Still Slowing Cloud Adoption

Why and How to Balance Security & Usability

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