Five pillars to data protection
In today's digital age, privacy laws require government bodies, private institutions, and individual citizens to protect and respect data privacy. To put it simply, the law protects individuals' privacy while allowing free access to information where it's needed.
The value of data has grown exponentially in modern businesses
Organisations, however, are constantly faced with threats that stem from potentially costly data breaches.
In the face of the Covid pandemic, businesses were forced to implement changes to adapt in order to survive. Remote working was one of the most significant changes and as a result, there have been a lot of concerns about data protection and compliance.
The consequences of data breaches are profound, not just for the company but also for its clients. In some cases, stolen data may contain relatively benign information while in others it might contain extremely sensitive information. Regardless, a breach can cost a lot of money to rectify and have significant negative effects on a company's reputation.
What is Data Protection?
The purpose of data protection is to safeguard data from corruption, compromise, or loss by preventing unauthorised access and use. Furthermore, it provides the ability to restore the data to a functional state in the event that something happens to render it inaccessible or unusable.
Additionally, data protection ensures that data complies with applicable laws and regulations. It is important to use protected data only for the purpose for which it was intended.
Let's take a look into the five main pillars of data protection:
- Data Protection Officers (DPOs) should be appointed: DPOs are responsible for ensuring compliance with industry standards and implementing data privacy regulations.
- Conducting privacy impact assessment (PIA): In a privacy impact assessment, an organisation can communicate openly to the general public how data is collected, how privacy issues are addressed, and how data is protected. For this reason, PIAs should be drafted in easy-to-understand language.
- Establishing a privacy management program (PMP): PMPs facilitate organisations in meeting their legal data protection obligations, meeting their clients' expectations, protecting their privacy, and minimizing the risk of personal data breaches. With a PMP, the risk of a data breach is reduced, existing problems are handled more effectively, and negative impacts from a data breach are minimized.
- Execution of data privacy and protection measures: To ensure data privacy, there needs to be a plan in place, both physically and technologically. Data breaches can be prevented by training employees frequently on data protection to avoid a breach.
- Protocols for the management of data breaches: The threat of data breaches makes it imperative for every organisation to develop a comprehensive data breach response plan. As a result of a data breach management plan, an institution is able to respond quickly to the breach. This minimizes the impact on the affected individuals/companies, lowers costs, and protects the reputation of the organisation.
Due to stiff competition in business, it's imperative to protect your information as securely as possible so that your competitors cannot gain an advantage. For this reason, your business should therefore take measures to ensure that data is never compromised in any way.
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