Data Mapping: Frequently Asked Questions
Most people find data privacy compliance to be complicated enough....Read Now
January 10, 2024
Running a business is complex, and there is no end to the number of different domains that you’ll need to be familiar with if you want to be successful. Data privacy professionals might not need to ask what data privacy compliance is, but we can’t all be privacy pros, can we? To that end, let’s start with the basics: What is data privacy compliance, and why is data privacy important?
Data privacy compliance refers to the practices, policies, and procedures an organization implements to ensure they adhere to all legal regulations and standards concerning their users’ private information. These regulations balance a company’s need for collecting user data and an individual’s right to control their personal information.
But data privacy compliance also goes beyond simply complying with legal requirements. By pursuing compliance, a business also fosters a culture of responsibility toward users’ trust while ensuring the ethical use of their personal data. By doing so, businesses can create positive consumer experiences while fulfilling their obligation to secure valuable information, contributing to long-term organizational success in an ever-evolving digital landscape.
As we’ll discover, data privacy compliance can be a lot of work. Is that work worth it? The answer is, unequivocally, “yes.”
For most organizations, the first reason to become compliant is probably to avoid fines and penalties. Noncompliance penalties vary from law to law, but it’s not uncommon to see fines in the seven- or eight-figure range. In the following sections of this article, we’ll talk about some of the fine structures of the largest data privacy regulations.
But there are more benefits to data privacy compliance than merely avoiding the unlikely but potentially crippling consequences of being fined. For one, compliance with these regulations helps protect customer privacy—in other words, it’s simply the right thing to do, which consumers recognize and appreciate. Data privacy compliance can foster trusting relationships, encourage customers to return to your business, and frame your organization as a reliable institution.
On the other hand, failure to prioritize data privacy can also create a loss in consumer trust, harming your business and derailing long-term success.
Lastly, becoming compliant with data privacy regulation forces you to engage in stronger data governance. It’s quite possible that your operations become more efficient as a result of becoming compliant. You’ll have to implement stricter protocols around the data lifecycle at your organization; stronger security controls; and more proactive, forward-thinking policies when it comes to collecting, processing, and storing personal data. The operational efficiency that results can be a powerful advantage over competitors who need to drop everything anytime they need to answer a question about the data they handle.
Different jurisdictions often have unique data privacy regulations and laws, making it crucial to adhere to rules specific to your jurisdiction. While each law has its own requirements, data privacy compliance typically consists of certain common practices, such as the following:
In this article, we’ll discuss how these and other requirements are treated in two major data privacy compliance laws: the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA; sometimes referred to by its related law, the California Privacy Rights Act, or CPRA). Both laws govern how organizations and individuals can process, collect, and store personal information and provide consumers with advanced control over the personal information organizations collect.
Understanding these data privacy compliance laws is crucial to avoid hefty fines and consequences while protecting your customers’ trust in your organization. By adhering to transparent data practices and implementing robust security measures, businesses can comply with these regulations and enhance their reputation.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a comprehensive data protection law adopted by the European Union (EU). The GDPR replaced the 1995 Data Protective Directive to help harmonize data protection laws across the EU member states. The GDPR applies to businesses within the EU and organizations worldwide that process the personal data of EU residents. Compliance with GDPR regulations is crucial. This regulation applies if any of the following criteria are met:
The GDPR follows seven core principles:
Businesses must uphold numerous responsibilities using GDPR compliance solutions when processing EU citizen data, such as the following:
Data Protection Authorities (DPAs) investigate all complaints, provide advice on data protection matters, and take action against businesses that violate GDPR requirements. Unfortunately, each EU member state has its own DPA, who has their own particular guidance on the law. This can make complying with the GDPR across the entire EU very tricky for organizations who choose to take on compliance without seeking outside help.
Yet getting compliant is very much in businesses’ best interest—noncompliant businesses can be fined over 4% of annual global revenue or €20 million, whichever is the higher figure. To support their compliance efforts without becoming distracted from their core business, many organizations rely on GDPR compliance automation solutions like Osano.
If you want to dive deeper into the GDPR’s requirements, check out GDPR Compliance Regulations: The 12 Biggest Need-to-Knows.
The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) is a significant data privacy law enacted in 2018. While this pioneering legislation aimed at protecting the personal data rights of California residents, there were concerns about its limitations, and the act required stronger provisions, leading to the creation of the California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA) to amend CCPA’s existing provisions.
The CCPA and CPRA significantly impact businesses operating in California, especially businesses that collect and process the personal information of California residents. CCPA compliance is crucial to avoid severe penalties resulting from noncompliance issues. The CPRA expanded the definition of the “sale” of personal data and introduced additional requirements that businesses must adhere to, making CCPA compliance more complex. A CCPA compliance solution like Osano helps businesses meet the following requirements and protections of the CCPA:
CCPA compliance software helps businesses avoid severe penalties if regulations are not followed. CCPA enforcement is carried out by the California Attorney General and the California Privacy Protection Agency (CPPA). GDPR and CCPA compliance have significant penalties, such as the following for the latter regulations:
Learn more about the specifics of the CCPA and CPRA in The Expert's Guide to California Data Privacy Law | CCPA & CPRA.
Effective data privacy management is crucial for businesses of all sizes, but it’s highly challenging to undertake on your own. Data privacy management software like Osano is crucial, offering a cohesive suite of tools designed to streamline and simplify every aspect of your organization’s data privacy initiatives. With Osano’s data privacy tools, you can easily automate key compliance processes to comply with evolving data privacy regulations globally, like the GDPR and CCPA/CPRA.
With Osano, you can:
Schedule a demo today to find out whether Osano can support your data privacy compliance.
Worried about getting compliant with U.S. state privacy laws? This checklist provides the basic steps you need to take to begin getting compliant with all of them.Download Now
Matt Davis is a writer at Osano, where he researches and writes about the latest in technology, legislation, and business to spread awareness about the most pressing issues in privacy today. When he’s not writing about data privacy, Matt spends his time exploring Vermont with his dog, Harper; playing piano; and writing short fiction.