Every January 28th is National Data Privacy Day, a global effort that generates awareness about the importance of privacy, highlights easy ways to protect personal information and reminds organizations that privacy is good for business.
I know what you are thinking. How does this apply to me? Well, I am glad you asked.
From the National Security Alliance…
ADVICE FOR INDIVIDUALS: OWN YOUR PRIVACY
Individuals feel an increasing lack of control over their personal data. However, there are steps you can take to learn about the types of data you’re generating online, and how it’s collected, shared and used. Follow these basic privacy tips to help you better manage your personal information and make informed decisions about who receives your data.
Calls to Action:
· Personal info is like money: Value it. Protect it. Personal information, such as your purchase history, IP address, or location, has tremendous value to businesses – just like money. Make informed decisions about whether or not to share your data with certain businesses by considering the amount of personal information they are asking for and weighing it against the benefits you may receive in return.
· Keep tabs on your apps. Many apps ask for access to personal information, such as your geographic location, contacts list and photo album, before you can use their services. Be thoughtful about who gets that information, and wary of apps that require access to information that is not required or relevant for the services they are offering. Delete unused apps on your internet-connect devices and keep others secure by performing updates.
· Manage your privacy settings. Check the privacy and security settings on web services and apps and set them to your comfort level for information sharing. Each device, application, or browser you use will have different features to limit how and with whom you share information. Get started with NCSA’s Manage Your Privacy Settings page:https://staysafeonline.org/stay-safe-online/managing-your-privacy/manage-privacy-settings/
ADVICE FOR BUSINESSES: RESPECT PRIVACY
According to a Pew Research Center study, 79% of U.S. adults report being concerned about the way their data is being used by companies. Respecting consumers’ privacy is a smart strategy for inspiring trust and enhancing reputation and growth in your business.
Calls to Action:
· If you collect it, protect it. Data breaches can not only lead to great financial loss, but a loss in reputation and customer trust. Follow reasonable security measures to keep individuals’ personal information safe from inappropriate and unauthorized access. Make sure the personal data you collect is processed in a fair manner and only collected for relevant and legitimate purposes.
· Consider adopting a privacy framework. Build privacy into your business by researching and adopting a privacy framework to help you manage risk and create a culture of privacy in your organization. Get started by checking out the following frameworks:
o NIST Privacy Framework
o AICPA Privacy Management Framework
o ISO/IEC 27701 – International Standard for Privacy Information Management
· Conduct an assessment of your data collection practices. Understand which privacy laws and regulations apply to your business. Educate your employees of their and your organization’s obligations to protecting personal information.
· Transparency builds trust. Be open and honest about how you collect, use and share consumers’ personal information. Think about how the consumer may expect their data to be used and design settings to protect their information by default. Communicate clearly and concisely to the public what privacy means to your organization and the steps you take to achieve and maintain privacy.
· Maintain oversight of partners and vendors. If someone provides services on your behalf, you are also responsible for how they collect and use your consumers’ personal information.
If you’d like to hear more about the importance of protecting your data privacy, check out The We Spend Local Network Podcast interview with Local Expert, Shawn Sutter of Your Hometown Techs. You can find it on our Facebook, YouTube, or on your favorite podcast player.
If you need help with your business or personal data privacy reach out to Shawn for a free consultation.