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In today’s technology age we see all the time that the volume of data is increasing at an exponential rate. This volume of data reached 59 zettabytes in 2020 and is expected to reach 149 zettabytes by 2024.

Customer data is a key subset of this data. Many organisations will still use spreadsheets to help an organisation make sense of this data, however this still leads to constant data sprawl which makes it difficult to get a single view of a data subject.

With Global privacy regulations in place, it is now a business imperative that you manage your data correctly. With heavy fines and loss of reputation of brand possible impacts of not doing this correctly and in a systematic way, organisations now need to consider a privacy management solution.

In a recent article in Information Age Heidi Shey, Principal Analyst at Forrester, commented: “Organisations will continue to adapt to new business models and changing customer expectations simply because they must in the face of economic uncertainty, social movements, and changing geopolitics. This will have significant impact for information and IT security professionals across the globe.”

Of course, many people will still manage privacy through spreadsheets but as data increases so does the room for error and the time it takes to get a single view of the data you hold on a data subject. Imagine for a second, how would you manage a freedom of information request or the need to redact data? The time saving alone could outweigh the cost of a privacy management software platform.

So, what are the key factors as to why you should consider a privacy management solution?

  1. Compliance – With strong GDPR regulations in place your data team need the right tools to organise, manage and report on the data you manage. Organisations need to be able to demonstrate that they have policies and procedures to manage private customer data. Recent reports have said that some of the biggest fines, outside of a data hack, have been due to organisations not being able to manage data access requests and data redaction correctly. According to DLA Piper’s latest GDPR Data Breach Survey, data protection regulators have imposed €272 million in fines under the GDPR regime for a wide range of GDPR infringements, not just for data breaches. Click here to find out the five biggest fines so far.
  2. Customer Trust – Customers are more and more savvy about their data rights and businesses must acknowledge that and make sure that they have the systems in place to manage that data and its privacy. The solution needs to be able to map and organise the data in a way to reduce response times for a query. If you submitted a data access request, would you be willing to wait a week for it?
  3. Third Party Management – Every business will be interacting with a third-party vendor. This inevitably means that you will be interacting with them around customer data. From a GDPR point of view sharing personal customer data is a risk that must be properly mitigated. By having the right solution in place, you can understand the data disclosure basis for each data processor. In addition, there would need to be regular risk assessments. Having a solution in place means not only can you help mitigate risk but you can keep track of the third parties and your interactions.
  4. 360 view of your data – At the beginning of this article I mentioned data sprawl. Can you imagine your data protection team trying to get a view on not only your customer data at an organisation level, subject area level and at an individual data subject level across the whole of your business? Now imagine this without a system in place to bring this all together. Now imagine that you need to redact some. This is pretty difficult without a solution in place.
  5. Data breach and loss of reputation – No one wants a breach but can you imagine if it happened. A solution in place will not guarantee against getting attacked but it will provide significant benefits for management and prevention.
  6. Company Agility – So why is having a solution in place important when it comes to your organisation’s agility? It’s quite simple, you can achieve the edge by showing the outside world that you are innovative, your business is customer centric and that protecting your customer and their data is key. Not only does this show your customers that you are the right business to trust in when it comes to their data, but it also means you are the right company to buy from.

The challenge with data increasing, the velocity of this and the volume only means one thing, not considering a software solution for privacy management now or in the future could impact your business negatively.

Want to speak to a specialist who can help steer you in the right direction? Contact us.