While proper security measures and protections should be established at the corporate level, there are many government policies now in place which mandate higher levels of security regulation. According to the United Nations, 194 countries worldwide have implemented legislation to secure the protection of data and privacy. Major regulations encompass laws relating to e-transactions, data protection privacy, cybercrime, and consumer protection. 

Irrespective of where you live, compliance is growing and it can’t be ignored. Just as California has led the way with vehicle emission standards and the rest of the country has followed, the same can be expected of the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA).

Compliance regulations will continue to grow and your business needs to prepare

While the majority of countries have regulations in place, studies have found that only 20% of businesses believe they are GDPR compliant. Established in Europe in 2018 and meant to regulate how companies handle personal data, privacy, and consent, these GDPR compliance laws were designed to reflect our ever-evolving world and the increasing risks that come along with it. Additionally, these regulations stipulate that organizations need to alert customers and regulators within 72 hours of a discovered data breach.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the number of GDPR compliant organizations has decreased since its initial introduction two years ago as businesses large and small have struggled to adhere to these regulations. Many cite their legacy IT systems as a major obstacle; 38% of those surveyed claim their IT landscape isn’t equipped to handle the complexities of GDPR. Additionally, 36% of respondents believe GDPR requirements are too complex to implement. The financial burden of aligning with GDPR is another major obstacle for organizations to overcome.

Invest in compliance now to avoid penalties later

While adhering to GDPR and other security regulations may be expensive for organizations, the risk of a data breach, tarnishing company reputation, and losing consumer trust is far greater and ultimately more costly. The Capgemini survey found that 92% of business executives believed being GDPR compliant made them stand out from their competitors. It helps to establish customer trust at the onset, therefore boosting customer trust and overall revenue.

The survey also found that respondents felt as though the requirements had helped improve IT systems and cybersecurity practices throughout the organization. There is a clear gap in technology adoption between compliant organizations and those lagging behind. Organizations compliant with GDPR, in comparison with non-complying organizations, were more likely to be using cloud platforms (84% vs. 73%), data encryption (70% vs. 55%), robotic process automation (35% vs. 27%), and industrialized data retention (20% vs. 15%).

CCPA is just the beginning of regulations within the U.S.

A newer piece of privacy legislation, the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), which was enforced on July 1, 2020, also had companies scrambling to meet its requirements. While GDPR laid the groundwork, only a small portion of businesses surveyed said they were going to be compliant with CCPA ahead of the enforcement date. In fact, in the most recent Global Privacy Benchmark Survey, more than 20% of respondents reported that they were either somewhat unlikely to be, very unlikely to be, or don’t know if they will be fully compliant with CCPA by July 1st, 2020.

One challenge many respondents cited was having manual processes in place, rather than automation. Automation helps simplify data privacy while using data to drive business growth. While this is a more efficient way of handling security processes, it is a more advanced methodology that some businesses are not yet equipped for.

Remote workforce accelerates the need for compliance agility

One example of a new security risk is the COVID-19 pandemic and the increase in remote workforces. Working remotely has caused many companies to introduce new communication avenues that also have an increased security risk: video conferencing and collaboration tools. In this “new normal,” 22% of respondents indicated that personal device security while working remotely has added a great deal of risk to their business.

How Ground Labs can help

The best way to be equipped in the compliance environment is with Ground Labs’ award-winning data discovery solution, Enterprise Recon. Ground Labs makes finding and remediating sensitive data efficient and allows your organization to start the process of achieving GDPR compliance. Powered by GLASS™ technology, Enterprise Recon enables the quickest and most accurate data discovery across the broadest range of platforms – ensuring that you always know where your data resides and that your business can continue optimal function while protecting your loyal consumers.

In order to protect consumers, legislation will continue to be revised to keep pace with the uncontrollable and unexpected privacy landscape. We need to ensure organizations are prioritizing security risk and protecting their consumer’s sensitive data in any configuration of what a “new normal” looks like.

And regardless of how legislation pans out and what new compliance laws are introduced to the world, it is your responsibility to help your organization prepare. If you’re ready to learn more about safeguarding your business’ data, schedule a meeting today. You can also kickstart your journey by reading our complimentary ebook.


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