GDPR – Regulation in Law on Data Protection & Privacy in the EU

GDPR – Data Protection & Privacy in the EU

Gabija Stankevičiūtė

GDPR or General Data Protection Regulation, is one of the most stringent security laws globally implemented in 2018 to set guidelines for collecting and processing personal information from people living in the European Union. The GDPR applies to all the businesses operating in the EU and those delivering services to European customers.

Data security is a primary concern all across Europe. We keep hearing the news about data breaches and cyber attacks happening around Europe. However, it does not mean authorities are not taking any step to improve data protection. GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) is one significant step taken by the European Parliament and Council of the European Union.

It is a European law regulation on data privacy and protection in the EU (European Union) and the EEA (European Economic Area). Let’s know more about GDPR, how it applies to businesses, and how you can comply with it.

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What is GDPR?

As mentioned above, GDPR stands for General Data Protection Regulation. It is the core of Europe’s digital privacy legislation that was agreed upon by the European Parliament and Council in 2016.

GDPR was officially implemented on 25th May 2018 to enforce a standardized data security law on all European Union members. According to the EU, GDPR provides people with the right to protect their personal information and revises how organizations and businesses should handle the information (data) of those that interact with them. In the law, there is also a provision of large fines to companies that don’t comply with GDPR.

General Data Protection Regulation has more than 100 articles, which you may read here. The regulation acts as a framework for data security laws across the continent and replaces the old 1995 data protection law.

How GDPR defines personal data

As per GDPR, personal data is any information that can be utilized to recognize a person’s identity. Different identity-related aspects can come under this, such as a person’s name, address, date of birth, ID number, and more. However, in the era of online data tracking technology, various other things are considered personal data such as social media accounts, IP addresses, browser cookies, email addresses, etc.

How GDPR Applies to Business

General Data Protection Regulation applies to all the businesses and organizations operating within the European Union (EU) and organizations outside of the EU offering services and goods to individuals and companies in the EU.

It simply means that almost every major corporation in the world needs to comply with the GDPR directive.

There are two types of data handlers the legislation applies to:

  • Processors,
  • Controllers.

A controller is a person, agency, and public authority that decides the purposes of personal data processing. The processor is a person, agency, and public authority that processes personal data on behalf of the controller.

According to GDPR, the UK’s Information Commissioner’s office will be accountable for registering data controllers and taking action on those violating data protection law. The commission says, “by unifying the European continent’s rule on data protection, the legislative body is creating new business opportunities and encouraging innovation.

GDPR takes legal obligations on a processor to maintain records of personal data and how it is processed.

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How to Comply with GDPR as a Business

How to comply GDRP as a business
Initially, it might seem daunting to achieve GDPR as it involves a lot of regulations that businesses need to follow. Below we have put together a few steps to make the compliance process pretty straightforward for you.

Step 1: Appoint a DPO (Data Protection Officer)

A data protection officer makes sure that your company is compliant with GDPR. So your first step should be hiring a DPO. Remember, only public authorities/companies that have 10 to 15 employees need to hire a DPO. However, even if your company doesn’t fall into this category, appointing a DPO won’t be a bad choice. GDPR Article 39 clearly explains the roles of DPO on all matters associated with data protection. Nevertheless, they are accountable for monitoring compliance and act as a supervisory authority.

Step 2: Check for Stored Personal Data

As per the directive, businesses should collect personal data with clearly-defined purposes and shouldn’t use it for anything else. A DPO should confirm every scenario in which your company collects, stores, and processes personal data. They should check if the personal data is utilized for the legal matter only. For example, if your company sells goods online to customers, your company will require a customer’s name, address, contact number, or email address for notifications only. There is no legal ground for asking personal information, such as a customer’s gender and marital status.

A company should clearly explain what personal data they hold and for what reason.

Step 3: Get Customer Consent

Getting a customer’s consent is a legal ground for processing their personal data. It should be in plain language. A customer must know which company is requesting data, how long it will be stored, and who receives it. To get customer consent, businesses should create and publish a privacy policy explaining how their users’ personal data will be used. Moreover, customers should be given an option to accept this policy and for their consent.

Step 4: Secure All Personal Data

According to GDPR, personal data should be processed in a manner it ensures the right level of security and confidentiality. Even if the data is stored electronically as part of an application, a business should be responsible for its protection. For that, you must take the necessary steps to prevent data breaches and other frauds. Otherwise, you will be fined with a massive penalty.

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Penalties for Noncompliance with GDPR

There are two levels of GDPR fines; the 1st level takes a fine of €10 million or 2% of annual turnover, which is greater. The 2nd level carries a maximum penalty of €20 million or 4% of annual turnover, whichever is the greater.

Which tier will apply to a business is determined by data protection authorities based on factors like the extent of non-compliance, duration of non-compliance, the size of any damage to data subjects, types of data involved, etc.

Some of the biggest names that have pay GDPR fines in 2020 include:

How to Stay GDPR compliant While Fighting Fraud With iDenfy

iDenfy data protection
GDPR requires businesses to protect the personal data and privacy of European citizens. While there are so many things that help you ensure your customers’ privacy, implementing a powerful identity verification solution adds an extra security layer.

With identity verification, you can rest assured that only legit people are using your platform, and no one is misusing the information.

iDenfy provides identity verification solutions. Our company has been offering its services to various individuals and businesses across the globe. We turn your smartphone or any other device into an ID verification terminal and face recognition system so that you can conduct the verification of your users remotely quickly.

Our ID document detection solution can recognize more than 1300 documents from more than 200 countries. To know more about our service, you can book a meeting with our experts or contact our team.

GDPR – Data Protection & Privacy in the EU_Infographic