Q4: Why is data privacy important?
Data privacy is one of the fastest growing business issues on the planet, encompassing businesses of all shapes and sizes across every industry. Data has never been a more powerful or valuable commodity, and the proper handling of data (consent, notice, and regulatory obligations) is becoming increasingly regulated.
This is because the issue of data privacy has become a highly emotive and sensitive topic for data subjects, as the uses of data become more and more adventurous, personalised and at times, intrusive.
In fact, the importance of data privacy lies, for many, in its morality; keeping private data safe is seen as the ‘right thing to do’. Data ethics dictates that individuals should have agency over how their data, including how well it is protected, how much is given away, under what circumstances and for how long – much like physical property.
For data-intensive businesses, it has had some dramatic effects on their data regimes and, in some cases, even restricting their business models, such as curtailing the free use of automation or the collection and exploitation of data for marketing purposes.
Nevertheless, data privacy also brings massive opportunity. If data privacy is done right – or more specifically, if privacy by design is rolled out – then there are significant opportunities that come from a better understanding of the condition, location, source, use, importance and sensitivity of every piece of data.
By making your data well structured, visible and based on firm ethical and regulatory grounding, you can be more confident in your authority to use it and apply it to achieve your goal. The applications of data are endless, and if privacy is implemented by design then the business can leverage it in automation and machine learning experiments that improve marketing, sales and general business operations.
Q5: What is Privacy By Design?
Privacy by Design is a concept designed to guide businesses into becoming more proactive regarding data privacy. Built on seven principles, the concept sets the standards for how data privacy should be built into projects, processes and everyday activities. These seven principles are:
- Proactively anticipating privacy-invasive events .
- The maximum degree of privacy should be delivered by default .
- Privacy should be incorporated from initial designs rather than added retrospectively.
- Data privacy should not come at the expense of full functionality.
- IT security across the entire lifecycle, from data collection, through to storage and eventual deletion.
- Transparency at all times. All stakeholders should be informed of how data will be processed, stored and erased.
- Data subjects should be given every opportunity to uphold their privacy rights .
Privacy by Design is important because it is not simply a framework to aspire to, but rather a necessary guideline for complying with privacy laws such as GDPR and CCPA. Public bodies like the ICO mandate that data privacy be upheld to the highest degree at every stage of a project, else face heavy financial penalties.
By incorporating these seven principles, businesses can ensure that they are treating their data subjects legally, fairly and ethically. Whether you are building a new IT system for storing personal data, developing policies that have privacy implications or looking to share data more actively with third-parties, Privacy by Design ensures that you remain privacy compliant from the very start.