How can Scottish businesses maintain Britain’s best data protection compliance record?


Just prior to the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) coming into effect Scotland had Britain’s best compliance record with data protection laws, with just 1.9% of a total £4.2m in fines being issued north of the Border.

Maintaining this record will be challenging. There are new pressures under the GDPR and with Edinburgh now seeking to become the data capital of Europe, there will be further stresses placed on Scottish businesses in terms of simply managing the additional volume of data, and in particular personal data.

New requirements and pressures under the GDPR

The GDPR applies to all EU organisations – whether commercial business, charity or public authority – that collect, store or process the personal data of EU residents, irrespective of nationality. One of the key changes introduced by the Regulation is the ‘ability to demonstrate compliance with the GDPR.’ A comprehensive and effective privacy compliance framework is the best way for organisations to provide evidence to support their compliance claims.

However compliance is often a more difficult task for SMEs as “small businesses can’t afford to bring in teams of legal experts,” says Alan Soady, spokesman for the Federation of Small Businesses.

Recent figures released by the Scottish government pointed out that there are currently more than 365,600 small businesses throughout the nation. This is the highest figure since the year 2000 and such prosperity is not likely to slow down any time soon. Therefore for Scottish SMEs one of the main challenges will be finding the resources, and gaining the necessary know-how, to enable them to become compliant.

How do I become compliant?

To help businesses comply with the GDPR and demonstrate the fact, we have put together a simple checklist which highlights the essential steps you need to take.

The GDPR compliance checklist:

  1. Establish an accountability and governance framework
  2. Scope and plan your project
  3. Conduct a data inventory and data flow audit
  4. Conduct a detailed gap analysis
  5. Develop operational policies, procedures and processes
  6. Secure personal data through procedural and technical measures
  7. Communications
  8. Monitor and audit compliance

To read more about each of the above steps, and learn about the business solutions which will help you achieve each of them, visit our GDPR compliance page >>

Business benefits of the GDPR

The new law doesn’t just protect the rights of the individual by giving them more control over their data, it also promotes greater transparency and accountability and aims to increase public trust. By getting data protection right, organisations will also benefit through enhancing their reputation, improving their competitive advantage and building better, trusted relationships with existing and potential customers.

How IT Governance can help

IT Governance, a leading global provider of IT governance, risk management and compliance solutions, is at the forefront of helping organisations globally address the challenges of GDPR compliance. With an office now in Edinburgh to help serve the local Scottish business community we are best placed and qualified to help you.

Take a look at our free resources which will help you achieve GDPR compliancy.

Free compliance guide >>                      Free documentation toolkit >>

We also offer comprehensive training courses to help ensure your organisation is on the right road.

                   GDPR Foundation Training course >>                   

GDPR Practitioner Training course >>

Or if you are not sure what solution is best for your organisation, speak to one of our GDPR experts who will be happy to advise you further.

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