Rethinking data privacy in the new normal

data privacy

Data privacy is a raging topic of discussion both on a corporate level and on a personal level. 

It’s difficult to believe that any organisation operating in the current market has not thought about data security and protection measures—even the smallest entity. Despite the knowledge we hold about the vulnerability of our data and how it can be used, however, data breaches are common. 

So much so, in fact, that they have been on the rise in the past few months as a result of COVID-19 and the many ways in which the crisis has weakened industries. 

This goes to show that past market values and trends cannot be relied on for accurate, up-to-date information. Data security is impacted by a variety of factors from external crises to internal accidents by team members. These appear to be the two extremes of weakened data security, from large-scale global crises that cause breakdowns in processes all over the world to mistakes caused by individual team members that expose sensitive data or make it vulnerable to cybercriminals. 

A contemporary business must be prepared to take on both these crises, often simultaneously.

The need to rethink data privacy

When the pandemic forced businesses to take to remote working, their networks grew and their security measures were stretched thin. This meant that existing security measures were inadequate to take on the stresses of remote working while protecting each business and its data. 

Even if data privacy was a key priority pre-pandemic, the measures you have set in place may need to be rethought in light of industry changes. 

For instance, many data security measures are implemented based on the specific features of your business network. This includes the data your company stores, the sensitivity of the data you collect, the immediate financial cost that will be incurred if your data is compromised, the industry you operate in, and who has access to your data.

In a post-crisis world, organisations reconfigured their processes and operations completely to suit the altered landscape. To maintain a powerful hold on your data privacy, your data security measures must follow a similar transformation as soon as possible. 

The cost of an outdated and reactive approach to data privacy 

The risks our data faces are numerous, but the reason why businesses must make it a pressing priority to guard against is because the costs of not being prepared are far too high. 

When a data breach does occur, there is an immediate financial toll as your business must take emergency measures to shore up the data leak, protect what data you can, and evaluate what has been lost. 

A much higher—and more difficult to calculate—loss is the loss of customer confidence. 

After a data breach occurs, you lose the trust of your customers. Through this, you lose their loyalty and you put them at risk of cyber threats and potential attacks. This is especially important in the current business landscape where the protection of privacy and data is not just a privilege but an expectation.   

The future of data security 

In a post-Brexit world, compliance changes are in the air. 

As the United Kingdom faces a crossroads in its regulation journey, we contend with the call to replace EU data protection law GDPR, under the notion that these compliance rules require too many requests for consent and are too complex to navigate. 

Reduced regulation would slash business compliance costs, but it would also reduce the trust leading organisations have in the United Kingdom when it comes to ethical business practices and secure processes. 

It would also mean reduced governance over the way in which data is collected and used; not an ideal scenario in a landscape that is already riddled with cyberattacks and threats to data.  

Keep your business secure with robust cyber risk management and prepare for the volatilities of the global landscape today.

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