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Data Compliance For Global Businesses: A Brief Guide

Are you wondering how your business can be data compliant? This article will show you how to get implement it properly. Data compliance aims to ensure the data privacy protection for customers and clients are legally applied. In every state there are different regulating bodies executing it, and the regulations vary based on different factors. The most common data compliance law is the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR.)
GDPR was enacted for the European Union (EU) member countries. It aims to regulate how companies implement data protection for all the citizens of its member states. However, not only the businesses in the member states needs to be compliant with GDPR. If your company has clients who reside in an EU member country, you need to adhere to these regulations. 
Here’s how to ensure compliance with data privacy: 
1. Assess Your Processes
Before the need for data compliance, there’s a high probability that some of your transactions didn’t adhere to data privacy, and if they did, there might be loopholes. On the other hand, it’s possible that you might have been compliant, but even so, some of the processes might be affected by the new rules. To assess it accordingly you should have your legal team analyse your processes to identify a breach or flaw in the system that needs improvement. 
2. Seek Your Customer’s Consent
Ensure that you ask for your customer’s consent as they access your products or services before the transaction process is complete. Notify them of how the information entered will be used, who will have access to it, how long will the data be stored in your system, and clearly inform them of their rights. The right that encompasses all other customer rights is their ability to withdraw any permission granted upon their request. All this information should come before they agree to the said terms and conditions.
3. Practice Data Minimization
Data minimization limits you from seeking information that’s more than what is needed from your customers for various services. Unless necessary, refrain from asking for sensitive information, such as race, political opinions, and sexuality.  
4. Invest In The Right Technology
The right technology will ensure all your business processes are in line with the data compliance regulations. 
Consider acquiring end-to-end encrypted automation technology that will minimize the work for your team in ensuring the security of any private data collected. All the data gathered will be automatically encrypted, with regulated access via correct authentication.
Invest in an extensive, cloud-based storage system for your company. This reduces the need to have countless storage systems in your office, which increases the possibility of data breach. Utilizing a large capacity and secured data storage platform is what most companies rely on at this day and age of digitization. 
With most of your data being collected through the internet and stored in digital systems, it’s essential to purchase a security software to minimize the risk of data theft and cyber-attacks. Alternatively, seek the services of a trusted security provider to secure your data. Properly evaluate the provider before giving them access to your data, including customers’ information.
5. Document All Your Processes
With data privacy laws enacted, random security audits are bound to happen. It’s always good to be prepared to prevent future legal problems.
Let all your workers document all their daily activities, including any instances of security breaches, no matter how insignificant. In such a way, during a security audit, your business can prove that they’ve been compliant with the data privacy regulations. 
6. Be Transparent
Transparency is the key to ensure that all parties involve will feel secure about divulging their personal information to your company. You should also extend transparency to the relevant authority besides your clients.  
Be sure to divulge any security breach incident to the affected customers as soon as it happens. You’re also required to inform the data compliance regulating body of the violation if it poses a threat and need further investigation.
7. Consider Taking An Insurance Cover
There’s a possibility of data theft or security breach even if every course of action is in place. But despite that we should still aim to do all possible security measures to keep up. Some companies have been sued and asked to pay hefty fines of up to four percent of their annual income due to a customer’s data being exposed without their permission. In this case, the customer has all the right to sue the company. 
Therefore, it’s essential to take an insurance coverage for protection when such unexpected expenses arise.
8. Hire a Privacy Officer
A privacy officer is an essential asset to your business, they’ll be responsible for monitoring your company's daily operations. This ensures that the processes are compliant with all security and privacy measures required. In case of a breach, the privacy officer will be in charge of investigating the incident. They’ll be the direct point of contact with your business’s security provider and the data compliance authorities. The officer will also ensure your business is up to date with any new or changed regulations regarding data privacy in any given country you work with. 
With a privacy officer, you and your team members can focus on the critical aspects of your business to thrive and gain more customer in the future.
Ensuring the data privacy of your customers’ information shouldn’t be challenging and stressful. With the guide listed in this article, if done correctly, it would lead to a successful, law abiding, and reliable business. 
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