GDPR and Your Business: What you Need to Know

Are you ready for the GDPR in your business?


Cybersecurity remains a major issue for digital commerce world. In the U.S. cybercrime costs business owners millions of dollars every year and has even led to the collapse of several startups as they didn’t have a data protection officer or the correct security measures in place.

Worse still, experts expect the situation to deteriorate even further. A report released in February 2018 indicates that annual cybercrime costs will hit $6 trillion by 2021.

To curb the menace, governments and agencies world over have been working round the clock to tighten weak links in the cybersecurity chain.

What is GDPR?   Let's dive in!

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GDPR and Your Business: What you Need to Know

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The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a new set of regulations developed by the European Union to help in the fight against cybercrime.

At its core, GDPR seeks to give people more control over the data they share with business entities on the internet. It’s evident that some businesses are currently misusing the information they collect from consumers. Cambridge Analytica, famous for influencing the last U.S. election, for instance, has obtained millions of personal records from Facebook without user permission because no laws bar them from doing so. The GDPR seeks to address such loopholes.

3 Ways the GDPR Impacts U.S. Businesses

So, why do you need to know about all this? How does a regulation developed by the European Union to protect E.U. consumers affect your U.S.-based business?

There are three reasons;

Many US-based businesses market in the EU

A good number of U.S.-based companies sell to consumers across the globe. If your business falls into this category, you’ll need to operate per the GDPR regulations.

The GDPR regulation applies to processing “personal data or data subjects in the EU.” The simplest way to interpret this is that all marketing activities in the EU will be subject to GDPR.

American PII slightly differs from “personal data” in the EU

Having established that your marketing activities in the EU would be subject to GDPR, you'll need to look closer at what “personal data” means in the context of the new regulation. In the U.S., personal information is officially referred to as Personally Identifiable Information (PII) and defined as “information that can be used to distinguish/trace the identity of an individual.”

“Personal data,” as used in the GDPR, appears to cover a much wider scope which introduces new challenges for businesses. According to the GDPR, “personal data” is “any information related to an identified or identifiable natural person.” It means that under the GDPR, everything ranging from an individual’s name to minor details such as race and geographical location count as personal data.

Under GDPR, breaches must be reported within 72 hours

Finally, U.S. businesses affected by the GDPR should also be aware of the regulation’s reporting guidelines. In the U.S., we’re used to waiting until a full probe is conducted before reporting a breach. So, a breach can be reported weeks after it happens.

There is no such luxury under the GDPR. If your business falls within this new regulation, you’ll need to report any incident at most 72 hours after it happens, or face non-compliance penalties.

Have You Made the Necessary Adjustments to Comply?

The GDPR laws came into effect on May 24, 2016, but businesses were given two years to get in compliance. The deadline for compliance is May 25, 2018. Avoid unnecessary penalties start taking steps to comply with the regulations today.


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Why the Halftime theme Mike?

I’m an Indiana Hoosier native where basketball is the top sport. Every team heads to the locker room at halftime to evaluate the first half and create an updated plan for the second half. That plan includes adjustments based on reviewing what worked and what didn't. The “halftime” is a key review point where the game stops, the team pulls away to huddle in the locker room away from the fans, and they come out prepared and ready to succeed in the second half.

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