May 25th, 2018, is fast approaching. The EU is bracing itself as that date approaches. It marks the end of the grace period for the implementation of the ruthless EU GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation).
Intended to be a savior in the field of data protection, this Regulation has the potential to strangle businesses through huge fines for non-compliance.
In my opinion, lawyers across the EU are circling in anticipation, ready to launch legal action against businesses on a magnitude never seen previously!
Are you willing to take that chance?!!
The penalties are steep enough to destroy a small to medium sized business. We’re talking about fines of up to €20 million or 4% of annual turnover, whichever is higher.
So what is the GDPR? And why should business owners be worried?
The European Union General Data Protection Regulation or GDPR is a set of rules governing the use of personal data of EU citizens by companies and organizations in the EU.
There are approximately 22 million registered businesses in the EU.
80% of these businesses have websites.
By survey, 20% of these have started actions to comply with GDPR.
Thus an estimated 17,6 million websites are not GDPR compliant.
If your website hasn’t been overhauled to include opt-outs, privacy statements, GDPR compliant terms and conditions, cookie policies and disclosure that you are collecting the person’s information and what you intend to use it for, then you are not in compliance. And that could be very costly!
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More on GDPR
Comprising 11 Chapters and 91 Articles, the GDPR is a monster regulation that demands compliance.
There are two main principles on which these new regulations are based:
- The intention is to give the individual more control over their personal data
- To simplify data regulation amongst EU small businesses.
These strict new regulations on the treatment of personal data have already been introduced. The two year grace period in which businesses were supposed to do the steps to comply with the GDPR, ends 25th May 2018.
Compliance with the requirements of the GDPR is mandatory for any company, large or small, which deals with or utilizes personal data.
Does GDPR apply to small businesses?
Simple answer is YES! If you deal with personal data of clients, staff, suppliers etc, then you have to take the steps to protect that information, and inform the person that you are processing their data. For more information on this contact us or download the FREE GDPR Checklist to see at a glance what you have to do.
Does GDPR apply to businesses outside the EU?
Again, the simple answer is YES! If your company is based outside the EU, but does business with EU based businesses or individuals, then, in order to protect the data on EU citizens, your business will have to take steps to comply with the GDPR.
The bottom line is that compliance is a must. Yet in the chaos and confusion of attempting to understand the GDPR, implementing the requirements and getting as close to compliance as possible, many businesses forget their website.
Your website is your link to the world. It is where you encourage visitors to your site to give you their personal data, which you will store and use for various purposes in the future. Each of those individuals have to be informed of your intentions and the fact that their information is going to be captured and processed by you. You have to give the opportunity to disallow that, to opt out and even to have their information deleted from your databases at any time.
So the best course of action is to ensure that your website is set up to do these functions in accordance with GDPR.
Use our free checklist to see what point are still not compliant or contact us for assistance on email@example.com.