GDPR: A year later
As one of my grammar school teachers used to say so wisely to everybody who passed through his class: The days go by so slowly, but the years go by so fast.
Hard to believe, with everything that has happened across the globe each week, that we are already approaching a year since the European Union implemented the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), a set of strict data privacy regulations aiming to protect the personal data of employees, applicants, customers, suppliers and partners who are citizens of EU countries.
In case you need a refresh, the consequences of not adhering to this compliance may result in fines of up to 4% of an enterprise’s annual global turnover or €20 million, whichever is greater.
As this legislation came into force, most channel companies took swift action, preparing themselves and their customers for the most significant and potentially impactful regulation change in 20 years. If you’re fortunate, you and your customers have been unscathed by this turn of events and may even be wondering if this was all just a bunch a hype, much like the Y2K scare at the turn of the century.
Well, findings from Computer Business Review show that over 59,000 GDPR infractions or data breaches have already been reported to European data protection authorities. One of the largest fines to date is €50 million, handed out by French data authority CNIL to Google in relation to the Mountain View, Calif., monolith processing users’ personal data. That’s hard to ignore, even with Google’s impressive market cap, and, given the 4% stipulation in the guidelines, the fine could have been far larger. (Google is appealing the fine.)
This past January, at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella stated that he sees privacy as a basic human right, and that he hopes that the United States can adopt similar privacy laws. Apple CEO Tim Cook also pleaded for stricter regulation and consumer privacy at this event.
What does this mean for you? It means that as the desire for data privacy grows, and as various governments follow the EU and start to regulate it, customers will need to look to reputable channel partners who can help them build data privacy into the architecture of their organization’s business structure.