Most people will have heard of the new General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) which takes effect on 25th May this year and there is widespread concern in the business community about the implications of the new regime.
What is GDPR?
The Regulation’s aim is to put in place a set of protection rules for everyone’s personal data with regard to the processing and storing of it by businesses. Unlike the old Data Protection Act, GDPR is focused less on the final policies and procedures and much more on the journey that every business must take in order to get there.
Why is it Relevant to My Business?
Every business process personal data even if it doesn’t realise it. Do you have suppliers (e.g. office cleaner or printer) who are individuals? Then, you must have stored their personal data such as name, address, bank details and maybe more. Do you ask individual clients to sign up to your newsletters? Then, you are storing their names and email addresses in a database. Do you employee any staff? Then, you must keep their personal details, names, addresses, bank details, tax details, sickness records, emergency contacts etc (just to mention a few).
So, in one way or another, your business processes personal data and it must comply with the Regulation.
Note that the UK government has confirmed that Brexit will not affect the implementation of the GDPR.
What If I Don’t Comply?
Your business simply cannot afford to ignore these changes.
The ICO (Information Commissioner’s Office) will have the authority to fine businesses that are in breach of the Regulation up to 20 million euro or 4% of their annual worldwide turnover. This can be disastrous to your business either financially or by impacting on its good reputation.
What Do I Have to Do Next?
First of all, DO NOT PANIC!
Now that you have realised that GDPR is a journey you and your business need to take, you have to decide on a course of action. Yes, this journey can be quite demanding and time consuming, however we are here to help!
You can keep yourself updated by subscribing to our mailing list (don’t worry, it’s free). We will be releasing a series of bulletins over the next months to cover the main areas of concern and discuss any developments.
You can also ask us about our fixed price solution we are offering. This covers the entire journey from start to finish and it will provide your business with a complete bundle of policies and procedures that will cover any aspect of compliance.