GDPR – the General Data Protection Regulation. If you run an online business, you need to comply with this. It is now legally required that you protect your customers’ data and their privacy. The GDPR regulates how you will be allowed to collect, store and use clients’ data. Lack of compliance with these regulations on your part may lead to legal action being taken against you. Here are four things you can do to stay within the GDPR Guidelines.
Create a Data Register
Keep a data register, otherwise known as a GDPR diary. This will record the steps that you are taking to ensure that your business complies with the GDPR guidelines. This record will be your defence in case any breach arises. It will show the authorities that you have begun the process and are making the effort to be GDPR compliant. Make sure that all data that you collect from when you get your register henceforth have a time-stamped audit trail and reporting information so that you will have clear evidence in the event of any accusations.
Classify the Data and Justify Your Need for It
Find all the data you have that can personally identify your customers and take note of who has access to such information. This is called data mapping. This will help you to classify and prioritize your data in order of its need for protection. You should also have a real or justifiable business need for which you are collecting customers’ personal data. Such reasons must be communicated to the customer whenever you request for their information and you must get their consent before you collect it. Make sure all your forms, applications and privacy statements are GDPR-compliant.
Conduct Impact Assessments
Conduct Privacy Impact Assessments (PIA) and Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) of all your security policies. These assessments will evaluate your data life cycles from their origin to their destruction. Make sure that you rid your system of data that you no longer need. You can appoint a data protection officer or a data controller who will be in charge of your GDPR compliance. A data controller is a person or body that determines the purposes and means of processing personal data. Know the rights that customers have under the GDPR and put systems in place to protect those rights.
Secure Your Customers’ Data
Make sure that the security measures you will use are inbuilt into your site programming and design. Ensure that you test them regularly. There is software out there that can also prove helpful in this regard. For example, a program like Netverify lets you meet AML, KYC & GDPR mandates. Always monitor your data so that you can be able to spot any breaches. If you do, report the breach within seventy-two hours to the relevant authorities. Make sure that you keep accurate records of every breach you discover in your GDPR diary.
If your business is online, then your data is your money. Do what you need to do therefore in order to stay GDPR compliant, not only because of fear of being fined but because it will show that you value your customers. This will build their trust in you which is ultimately good for your business.