Let’s face it. The issue of data privacy has really always been an important one. In the good old days, everybody locked their filing cabinets and rented safety deposit boxes at the bank. However, now that much of our data is digitized and we’re sharing more and more information online every day, data privacy takes on a much greater importance in 2018.
For example, a company could be retaining personal info for millions of customers. That data must be kept private at all times so that their identities stay safe along with the company’s reputation. Data breaches have been in the news a great deal lately and unfortunately, some companies are suffering for it. Don't let your company be one of them.
There are numerous laws and regulations related to privacy that businesses of all sizes have to be aware of during the collection and use of their customers’ data, not just in the U.S. but worldwide as well. Here, we have to pay special attention to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requirements in addition to state and local laws when conducting business. At Data Ethics LLC, our team can help your team to be ready for any eventuality related to data privacy via several strategies designed for developing your company's comprehensive privacy plan, including:
~ Privacy Plan/Strategy
~ Privacy Training
~ Privacy Impact Assessment
In this digital age, the idea of privacy is generally applied to critical personal information, aka personal health information (PHI) or personally identifiable information (PII). This could encompass health and medical records, Social Security numbers (SS#), and financial data like credit card numbers or bank account info. It could even include very basic information that is still considered sensitive, like the full name, address, and birthdate of a customer. In fact, the list of personal info that is highly sensitive can be quite extensive.
For businesses, the privacy issue goes way beyond the PII of your customers and employees. It can also include all of the information that is keeping your company operational, whether it’s financial info that shows how you spend and invest your money or proprietary R&D data. If any of that data were to get into the wrong hands, the impact could be disastrous for your business.
Data breaches are a clear and present danger, as well, for other important entities, including but not limited to the following:
1. Major corporations- A data breach could put proprietary data in competitors' hands.
2. Government agencies- A data breach could place top-secret- info in enemy hands.
3. Schools- A breach could put PII of both students and teacher in the hands of criminals who are committing identity theft.
4. Doctor’s offices and hospitals- A breach could put the PHI of patients in the hands of those who could plan on misusing it.