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Compliance with Privacy and Compliance Laws is Key in Today’s Digital Age

The number of data breaches that have flooded the headlines in recent years, combined with the increasingly stringent regulatory environments that businesses find themselves operating in, has made individuals more aware of their data privacy rights, and companies more aware of how falling foul of compliance and privacy regulations could have catastrophic consequences.


This has seen entities race to address an array of compliance requirements, resulting from acts such as the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and others. These regulations cover many aspects, ranging from how to use and store customer data, the right to be forgotten, as well as more business-oriented areas such as know-your-customer (KYC) and anti-money laundering (AML).


This has also seen the demand for privacy and compliance officers soar. Across a wide range of industries, including retail and manufacturing, to healthcare and government, these roles are hard to fill. Skills are already scarce, and competition for them is fierce, particularly for candidates who have a legal or accounting background and are experienced when it comes to identifying and managing regulatory risk and collaborating across all the departments within the business.


Regulations now mean that entities need to juggle several balls to keep abreast with global and domestic regulatory standards, and they need to do this in an environment where distributed or hybrid workforces are the norm, and cloud solutions the reality. Concurrently, the rise of data protection, compliance, and privacy — shows no signs of slowing down, meaning skills in this area will remain in demand for the foreseeable future.


Alexey Ivanov, Director of Data Privacy and Compliance Services at ESPE, CIPP/E, says the importance of personal data protection laws, such as the GDPR, should be overestimated at a company’s peril. “They are different but equally crucial for both individuals and businesses alike. From a user's perspective, these laws are important because they enable users to control their personal data and exercise their rights over their data.”


He says for businesses, on the other hand, compliance with privacy laws is important because it not only enables companies to avoid very heavy fines but a loss of customer trust too. “Regulators are increasing the pressure, and are levying heavy penalties as an enforcement tool. We are seeing the number and level of fines growing tremendously.”


To make matters worse, no business is safe, regardless of how much money they have to throw at security solutions. Some of the biggest names, such as Toyota, Equifax, British Airways, and Marriot International, have fallen victim to breaches, and they are just the tip of the iceberg. This is why it is crucial to have an individual or team that is tasked with privacy and compliance.


Getting a handle on legal obstacles when using personal data, with a slew of complex legal regulations that vary from one country to another, is extremely difficult. Organisations, in addition to the legal regulations they have to comply with, need to observe industry-accepted security standards and certifications, such as PCI DSS. Moreover, they need to adhere to digital platform owners’ requirements if they want to distribute their products on those marketplaces.


In short, these individuals are tasked with overseeing data privacy compliance and managing data protection risk for the entire organisation. And this goes beyond simply legal compliance with data privacy laws and breach prevention, to becoming a business enabler that can help businesses assess new opportunities that would make use of data assets and establish the appetite for risk in these instances.


 

The world is changing. The line between the physical and digital worlds has blurred, with most activities by companies and individuals occurring online. Technology is progressing, but users are not adapting to a new world in which cyberthreats and risks grow exponentially.


A lack of understanding of operational security (OPSEC) and proper practice is exploited by attackers of all kinds on a daily basis, allowing them to abuse companies and individuals in a variety of different ways. C-level executives are particularly vulnerable as their roles make them one of the most common targets. This is not only a problem for their employers – it also affects their personal life.


This training course provides the necessary awareness based on real-life examples with a realistic action plan to minimize exposure to current and future attacks by advanced adversaries.

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