With the General Data Protection Regulation, or GDPR, coming into effect across Europe in 2018, many businesses are scrambling to go over the GDPR Checklist and make their websites compliant. Failure to meet the GDPR’s standards can surely lead to hefty fines. But, more importantly, non-adherence can alienate customers and visitors who expect their data to be protected by the companies they interact with. Yet, complying with GDPR requirements can seem pretty daunting, and this keeps more than just a few companies from taking the necessary steps towards adherence. But with this blog post, we can help you get a headstart on making your business adhere to the GDPR. So, read on and learn how you can make quick yet essential improvements today!
Does your business need to adhere to the GDPR?
But how do you know if the GDPR applies to your business? If you are any of the following, then you must adhere to its rules and regulations:
- A company or entity based in the EU (regardless of where the information is processed)
- A company or entity with a branch in the EU (regardless of where the data is processed) or;
- A company established outside the EU but offers goods or services to or tracks personal information of individuals in the EU
Note that the GDPR is applicable even to small and medium-sized companies, particularly those whose core activities include data processing.
Top ways to become GDPR-compliant
2. Enable opt-in data collection.
It may initially seem counterintuitive, but the GDPR requires that customers must opt-in to have their information collected by default. This means that businesses must provide easy ways for site visitors to actively choose whether or not they want to share their details, such as checkboxes or toggles.
3. Secure data collection and storage.
Any platform you use to collect customer data must be secure and encrypted. Otherwise, it will be in violation of the GDPR. Ensure all passwords and login details are unique and complex enough to prevent hackers from accessing information. Additionally, invest in reliable online storage solutions to help store and encrypt data safely.
4. Inform users of cookies prior to collection.
Cookies are small pieces of code placed on the user’s computers. These enable websites to track their behavior and personalize their experiences. The GDPR requires that companies or entities inform their customers of any cookies their websites are collecting before they are installed on their computers. This makes sure that any individual can make an informed decision about whether or not they want these data trackers. To comply with this regulation, create a ‘Cookie Consent’ page on your website that provides information about the types of cookies you use.
5. Implement an age verification system on your website.
The GDPR states that businesses must take ‘appropriate measures’ to establish the ages of users. This ensures that they’re above the age of 16 (the legal minimum age for consenting to have their data collected). To comply with this regulation, implement an age verification system such as a CAPTCHA or ask customers to provide proof of ID before submitting personal information.
6. Consider appointing a Data Protection Officer (DPO).
Does your business process large amounts of customer information? Do you operate in sectors specified in the GDPR, such as healthcare and finance? Then, you may be required by law to designate a Data Protection Officer (DPO). A DPO is responsible for overseeing the collection and processing of customer details. They can help you navigate the intricacies of the law to ensure that everything is compliant with the GDPR. Yet another critical service that they provide is advising customers about their user rights.
7. See a data protection expert.
Contact a data protection specialist who can help guide you through the process and make sure your business is fully adherent. They will be able to provide expert guidance on all aspects of GDPR adherence and offer strategies for securely managing customer information. Investing in their expertise now will save you precious resources in the long run by ensuring that your website remains compliant with industry regulations.
The bottom line
Making sure your website complies with the GDPR’s strict regulations will help your business website become fully GDPR-compliant. At the same time, your customers will gain the necessary confidence to continue doing business with you! It’s important to remember that GDPR adherence isn’t a one-time goal but an ongoing process. So, regularly review and update your privacy policies to reflect changes in legislation or customer preferences.
For more savvy tips to make your website and business processes more efficient, visit the blog of Triveo Media today!