Perfect Privacy

A look into the current state of data privacy

Back in 1972 the late, great Lou Reed released “Perfect Day”, a slow, dreamy ballad capturing a couple’s perfect day in the park. The song makes me think how strong relationships can make every day perfect. Strong relationships are built on trust.

Now we are firmly in the GDPR era, the word trust should be top of mind for any organization dealing with personal data and being open and transparent about how they use it has become increasingly paramount.

January 28th marks Data Privacy Day, raising awareness around privacy and data protection best practices. Data Protection should be in our minds every day, not just at home but in our work life too. Respecting data privacy rights is something that employers and employees alike must be confident with or risk hefty fines and reputational damage.

GDPR is starting to flex its muscles, Google has just received a record fine of £44 million ($57m) from France, with eyes on other digital giants. Facebook is all too aware of reputational damage from a lack luster approach to data protection, still licking its wounds from loss of users and under continual pressure to do more with their use of personal data, perhaps inspiring Apple’s CEO stance on privacy.

Non-EU countries are starting to follow in the footsteps of GDPR, from California passing their Consumer Privacy Act, and the rest of the USA are sure to follow, to India drafting their own Data Privacy bill. Data Protection is just hotting up!

The next big change in regulation is ePrivacy (ePR), slated to come in force sometime this year or next. This new regulation expands on the GDPR specifically focusing on compliance requirements around electronic communications. It will change how companies market their message as ePR regulates use of cookies, email and SMS. It also covers cold calling, hopefully putting an end to those annoying scatter gun approaches where the call is connected when you speak and tackling those scam calls utilizing text-to-speech messages telling you have a problem with your internet or you have a tax rebate – Ignore these calls please if you get them!

This is all leading to the importance of businesses building trusted direct relationships with individuals and supplying real value in exchange for their personal data. We will hopefully start to see a shift from the shady underworld of data brokers, collecting our personal data on mass without our knowledge and selling it online, and start to see a move towards more open data bastions, who can install confidence that the personal data they handle is secure and will not be misused or abused.

A new world where one perfect day, our own private information may be worth currency, making us the masters of our own personal data, where we decide who can have it and what can be done with it.

Today is Data Privacy Day, @adammayerwrk explores how data protection can make a perfect day


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