On an individual level, data privacy refers to the management of your personal or private information. For businesses, it’s a set of standards and procedures for sourcing, using, and sharing vital company data and the personal data of your customers.
That being said, data privacy methods are crucial to protect the information that matters most, such as financial documents, medical records, ID numbers, and birthdates. Furthermore, a comprehensive understanding of data policy is necessary for companies to remain compliant with state, federal, and international privacy laws and regulations.
This guide will walk you through the following questions:
- What is data privacy?
- Why is it important?
- What steps can you take to ensure that you or your company is protected and compliant?
Data Privacy Explained
As one of three branches of data protection, data privacy involves the proper handling of sensitive company information and private user data. However, it is important to remember that there are key differences between data privacy vs. data security. In general, data privacy considers the management of three primary kinds of data, which include:
- Personal data – Your customers entrust you with a range of sensitive information about themselves, from identifying information like their name and birthday to geographic information like their address and phone number. They also share sensitive financial details like their banking and credit card information. Managing this data is the most important concern of data privacy.
- Financial data – Information about how your company earns, spends, and saves money must also be handled carefully. Data privacy includes standards and safeguards for doing so.
- Intellectual property data – For companies, the original work on which you’ve built your reputation also needs to be safeguarded. To an extent, data privacy accounts for that.
What Are the Elements of Data Privacy?
Data privacy entails three key elements for ensuring information protection and proper handling. Those elements are:
- Individual rights – To a large extent, the “privacy” in data privacy refers to the consumer. Your customers have a right to know how their personal information is stored and used. Importantly, this includes knowing whether and under what circumstances their information will be shared with third parties.
- Procedural concerns – Data privacy entails policies, standards, and guidelines for harvesting, handling, and sharing data. Companies must develop these procedures in accordance with each state and federal regulation.
- Compliance – Data privacy is subject to a range of state and federal laws and regulations that legislate how personal information is managed. If your company services customers abroad, international regulations will also come into play.
What Are the Types of Data Privacy?
To help meet individual rights, procedures, and compliance requirements, there are five types of data privacy methods that you can implement to ensure consumer privacy. These include:
- Data encryption – Coding all company and consumer data to secure your network and prevent cybercriminal breaches.
- Cloud backup – Storing your sensitive data on a private server that can be accessed across your company to prevent data loss.
- Password protection – Defending sensitive information by creating strong password gateways that are changed every few months.
- Identity and access management (IAM) – Regulating which users have access to your subject data based on job duties.
- Intrusion detection and prevention software – Monitoring your network’s traffic to identify potential threats or data breaches.
What Are Common Data Privacy Issues?
Practicing effective data privacy protocols can help to manage internal complications and implement effective solutions to data breaches or loss.
That being said, the most common data privacy issues facing businesses are:
- Increased devices – These days, businesses don’t run on a single computer. Instead, a range of devices, from laptops to mobile devices, leave your company’s data vulnerable to attacks. Proper protocols and procedures for device use, including how they’re used, which types of devices are appropriate, and who may use them, can help protect your company from data breaches.
- Maintenance costs – Managing all the data your company handles isn’t cheap. From the upfront costs of data security software to the staggering fees that can result from non-compliance, businesses need data privacy solutions that don’t break the bank.
- Data overload – In recent years, the cost of storing and managing data on computers and in cloud servers has decreased. As a result, many businesses have amassed more data. However, managing data in a way that meets regulatory requirements and is cost-effective can be a challenge. As such, partnering with a data management platform is the solution many businesses turn to.
Why Is Data Privacy Important for Businesses?
The importance of data privacy for businesses cannot be overstated. Remaining diligent about how you manage data privacy and stay up-to-date on the field’s best practices and regulations ensures that your company:
- Remains compliant – Violating privacy laws and regulations can result in a range of penalties. Government fines can range from thousands to millions of dollars, while certain offenses can lead to criminal charges and incarceration.
- Protects customers – When the private data of your customers is improperly handled or falls into the wrong hands, you leave them vulnerable to fraud, harassment, and unwelcome surveillance.
- Builds brand value – Remaining compliant with privacy regulations and properly handling customer’s sensitive data helps build your image as a responsible, ethical business that consumers can trust.
Ensure Data Privacy with DataGrail
Data privacy is vital to the success of any business, helping to keep personal information secure and bolster your company’s reputation as a trusted enterprise. However, complying with data privacy regulations and scaling your privacy programs can be complex. So, wondering how to improve data privacy?
At DataGrail, we’re working to simplify the way businesses manage their data privacy concerns. We take the mess out of data privacy, helping you untangle complicated privacy law and delivering you one easy-to-use data privacy platform for managing, automating, and scaling your programs to meet all data privacy compliance regulations.
Modern businesses need modern solutions that recognize the unique privacy challenges of the day. At DataGrail, we make it easy to understand and protect your data.
Getting started is easy, too. Request a demo today.
Storage Networking Industry Association. What is Data Privacy? https://www.snia.org/education/what-is-data-privacy
Camparitech. A Guide to the Federal and State Data Privacy Laws in the U.S. https://www.comparitech.com/data-privacy-management/federal-state-data-privacy-laws/#