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General Data Protection Regulation: What is it?
GDPR is an acronym for General Data Protection Regulation. GDPR is a regulation on data, in EU law, that aspires to protect the privacy of the personal data and information relating to each individual citizen of the European Union and the European Economic Area.
The Key Principles of GDPR compliance
There are seven key principles in how data is to be protected in the GDPR, these are:
- Lawfulness, fairness and transparency
- Purpose limitation
- Data minimization
- Storage limitation
- Integrity and confidentiality (security)
Let’s take a closer look at these.
Lawfulness, Fairness and Transparency
The personal data of the individual is required to be processed in a lawful, fair and transparent manner.
Personal data is only to be collected for explicit, specific and legitimate purposes. There is to be no further processing of the collected data for any incompatible uses other than its initial use. The following purposes are not deemed incompatible; archiving the data for public interest, scientific or historical research purposes or statistical purposes.
Personal data is to be relevant, sufficient and limited to the purpose it is being it is being processed for.
Personal data needs to be as accurate and relevant as possible and any data that is incorrect shall be deleted or rectified without delay.
Personal data is to be stored in a way which identifies the data subjects for the least amount of time necessary. Personal data may be held for longer under the following conditions: where it is being used solely for archiving purposes in public interest, for scientific or historical purposes or statistical purposes. In these cases it is necessary that the data be stored in a way that safeguards the individuals’ rights and freedom as set out by the GDPR.
Integrity and Confidentiality (security)
Personal data must be processed in a way which safeguards the security of that personal data. This includes storage that protects against illegal processing, accidental loss, and destruction or damage.
Whomever is responsible for the safeguard of the personal data must be able to demonstrate compliance with the previous six points.
These seven principles are the backbone of the GDPR and are good data practice principles. Failure to comply may incur a hefty fine.
The Rights of the Individual
The GDPR sets out the rights of the individual. These rights are:
- The right to be informed
- The right of access
- The right to rectification
- The right to erase
- The right to restrict processing
- The right to data portability
- The right to object
- Rights to automated decision making and profiling.
Let’s take a closer look at these.
1.The right to be Informed
The right to be informed is to provide your user with the information about how you use the personal data you collect from them, how long you retain it and who it will be shared with.
Below is a table listing the privacy information which you should supply to your users
2. The right of access
The right of access may also be known as subject access. It is the right of individuals to access their personal data if they choose. This request must be in written form and in most cases can not be charged for.
3.The right of rectification
The right of rectification means that an individual has the right for incorrect information to be corrected as soon as possible.
4.The right to erasure
The right to erasure may also be referred to as the right to be forgotten. This right means that the individual has the right for their personal data to be erased under certain circumstances.
5.The right to restrict processing
The right to restrict processing refers to the individuals right to have their personal data restricted or suppressed in certain circumstances, therefore limiting the way in which an organization can use it.
6.The right to data portability
The right to data portability is the right of the individual to obtain, use and move their personal data to another environment for reuse. The data must be transferred in a safe, secure manner.
7.The right to object
The right to object is the right of the individual to object to the processing of their personal data in certain circumstances. They have the right to stop their data being used for the purposes of direct marketing.
8.Rights to automated decision making and profiling.
Detect, Secure, Investigate and Notify
Ensure your policy includes a clause outlining that you are able to detect, protect to the best of your ability, investigate any data breaches and report them to the data subject or supervisory authority within 72 hours.
How Does the GDPR apply to you?
The GDPR was put in place to protect the rights of the citizens of the EU. However it’s principles apply to any company/organization/website etc who operate inside or outside of the EU and obtain personal data for any reason from residents within the EU. This is known as the extra-territorial effect.
This is made clear in Article 3 of the GDPR
Benefits of GDPR compliance
Are you GDPR compliant?
Disclaimer: This article is not a substitute for legal advice, nor does it attempt to offer legal advice, it is for information purposes only.