The General Data Protection Regulation, or GDPR, is a law created by the European Union to protect its citizens’ privacy and information. It includes the concept of the “right to be forgotten”, meaning if an EU citizen doesn’t want you to have their information, they have the right to request that it be deleted entirely and expect proof when completed. If you do business in the EU or have EU citizens as customers, GDPR applies to you, take it seriously as significant fines for non-compliance can apply! Fines can be as high as 20,000,000 EUR, or up to 4 % of the total worldwide annual turnover of the preceding financial year, whichever is higher.
The GDPR doesn’t directly apply to North American companies, however we expect something similar will come into law in Canada (Bill C-11), and different US states have started to implement their own variations. According to Wikipedia, the regulation has become a model for many national laws outside the EU, “including UK, Mauritius, Chile, Japan, Brazil, South Korea, Argentina and Kenya. The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), adopted on 28 June 2018, has many similarities with the GDPR.”
Just to give you some perspective on American firms and fines under GDPR, so far Google has been fined €50 million ($56.6 million). Meanwhile, Amazon was fined €746 million, or $887 million US in July of this year. This would be the largest fine imposed so far under GDPR, but Amazon plans to appeal the decision.
Even if you are not currently doing business in the EU, you need to think about safeguarding your clients’ privacy and information. As more jurisdictions plan to roll out similar privacy laws, expect to see more regulations fine businesses that are not doing enough to safeguard their clients’ data and privacy. No matter where in the world you do business, you need to make sure you are able to protect consumer data, so that you can be prepared for when similar regulations become law in your area.
If your business is looking to better protect your clients’ data and privacy, talk to the experts at Quick Intelligence. Our team at QuickProtect is ready to help you ensure that you are protecting your clients’ privacy and valuable data.