Data Privacy is for Life, Not Just One Day a Year

Headshot for blog author Adam Mayer

Adam Mayer

3 min read

This Saturday, January 28th sees Data Privacy Day come round again, an international effort to empower individuals and encourage businesses to respect privacy, safeguard personal data and enable trust.

As always this should act as a reminder that every individual within an organization requires a basic understanding of their internal privacy rules and regulations. It has become more important than ever for organizations to ensure they implement good practice, as not adhering to stringent guidelines can have serious impact to brand, trust and financial repercussions. That’s part of why the National Cybersecurity Alliance expanded its initial day focused program to a full week just last year.

But data privacy should not be top of mind just for a day or a week - it should be every day in this data-driven world we live in. There’s a growing need for roles where the highest standards can be implemented. Our research found that by 2030, businesses will have “Chief Trust Officers” in place that will be responsible for setting the foundation of governance, outlining policies and procedures for all staff to follow.

Ultimately, a holistic approach should be adopted to ensure that organizations can harness real-time data insights without data privacy issues arising. Understanding the data lineage, managing user access through a data catalogues, and ensuring people understand how to draw from and use different data sources responsibly through data literacy education, are key to preventing new compliance concerns. This should be front of mind for CIOs, CDOs and budding Chief Trust Officers as they partner with their CISOs and Privacy Officers to enable data literacy in a compliance driven manner.

I like to use Data Privacy Day as a timely reminder to look beyond the usual access controls and think about how data and analytics could be used to support compliance. Analytics programs can help IT teams visualize who has access to what information and if that remains relevant to their role. For instance, this could be through bringing together disparate data sets on user access controls and HR lists of leavers, starters and changers to ensure that there are no anomalies where people retain access to information that is no longer appropriate to their role.

Analytics can also help promote good organizational data hygiene, by reporting on any personal or customer data that is being held that may no longer be needed, so it can be marked for deletion in line with data retention and other policies.

This helps businesses introduce real intelligence into the management of data privacy to reduce the risk of human error and streamline processes for IT teams and other areas of the business.

In a world filled with data, on Data Privacy Day @AdamMayerwrk reminds us that we need to be vigilant all year round.

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