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GDPR Compliance Checklist

With the GDPR now in full force, have you taken the necessary measures to comply? If you're not prepared, you're certainly not alone.

To accelerate your existing efforts, we’ve distilled everything you need to do to achieve full compliance into this simple 9-step GDPR compliance checklist.

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If you need help with your GDPR compliance project or are unsure about which of our products and services are best suited to your specific needs call us now on 0333 800 7000 Alternatively, you can request a call back using the form below. Our experts are ready and waiting with practical advice.

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1. Obtain board-level support and establish accountability

GDPR compliance requires board-level support. It’s therefore essential that the board understands the implications of the Regulation – both positive and negative – so that they can allocate the resources needed to achieve and maintain compliance.

What you need to do:

  • Advise the board about data protection risks and the benefits of GDPR compliance.
  • Obtain management support for your GDPR compliance project.
  • Assign accountability for GDPR compliance to a director.

Try these GDPR solutions for additional support:

2. Scope and plan your GDPR compliance project

Once you have obtained top-level support, you will need to work out what areas of your organisation fall under the GDPR’s scope.

What you need to do:

  • Appoint and train a project manager.
  • Appoint a DPO (data protection officer) if necessary. If you’re unsure about whether or how to appoint a DPO, visit our DPO information page.
  • Identify standards that could provide a framework to help you establish your compliance priorities:
    • The international information security standard, ISO 27001 can help you apply data security best practice, which helps you meet requirements for appropriate technical and organisational security measures of the GDPR (Article 32).
    • Other standards such as ISO 27701 or BS 10012, which were developed to enable compliance with key privacy laws, provide the specifications for implementing a privacy management system (PIMS).
  • Assess whether data protection by design and by default has been incorporated into processes and systems.
  • Consider the implications of Brexit in your planning.

Develop a framework and GDPR compliance plan with these resources:

3. Conduct a data inventory and data flow audit

To comply with the GDPR's data processing requirements you must be able to fully understand what data you process and how you process it. You should therefore:

What you need to do:

  • Assess the categories of data you hold, where it comes from and the lawful basis for processing.
  • Create a map that shows how data flows to, through and from your organisation.
  • Use the data map to identify the risks in your data processing activities and determine whether a DPIA (data protection impact assessment is required.
  • Create records of personal data processing activities, as required by Article 30, drawn from the data flow audit and gap analysis.

The following tools can help you improve your data flow mapping:

  • Data Flow Mapping Tool
    Simplify the process of creating data flow maps and gain a thorough understanding of the personal data your organisation processes.

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  • GDPR data flow audit
    If you prefer more personalised support, a data flow audit entails a thorough on-site audit of the personal data your organisation collects and processes, and provide a map that plots personal data in all its forms, wherever it is processed.

     Enquire now

4. Undertake a comprehensive risk assessment

Risk assessments play a crucial role in any GDPR compliance plan. The GDPR encourages a risk-based approach to data processing.  This enables organisations to develop appropriate measures to manage their risks. The GDPR however does not clarify how you should assess and quantify those risks.

What you need to do:

  • Establish the risk assessment plan
  • Identify your risks
  • Analyse and evaluate your risks
  • Determine ways to control your risks

These solutions can help you conduct a risk assessment:

  • vsRisk Cloud
    vsRisk Cloud is an online tool for conducting an information security risk assessment aligned with best practice. It is designed to streamline the process and produce accurate, auditable and hassle-free risk assessments year after year.

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  • ISO 27005 Certified ISMS Risk Management Training Course
    Learn how to conduct an information security risk assessment from start to finish following proven risk management techniques.

    Book now

5. Conduct a detailed gap analysis

Conducting a GDPR gap analysis will help you assess your current workflows, processes and procedures to identify any compliance gaps that you need to rectify. 

What you need to do:

  • Audit your current compliance position against the GDPR’s requirements.
  • Determine which compliance gaps require remediation.

Get the most out of your GDPR gap analysis with these solutions:

  • EU GDPR Compliance Gap Assessment Tool
    This questionnaire-driven tool helps you assess your organisation’s compliance position and identify any gaps for remediation.

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  • GDPR Gap Analysis
    Get an on-site assessment of your privacy management and data processing practices from our data protection consultants, who will summarise your compliance gaps and provide remediation recommendations.

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6. Develop operational policies, procedures and processes

Having established your compliance gaps, you should bring your existing policies, processes and procedures into line with the GDPR’s requirements, and develop new ones to ensure you fulfil your legal obligations.

What you need to do:

  • Ensure your data protection policies and privacy notices are in line with the GDPR.
  • Where you rely on consent as your lawful basis for processing, ensure it meets the GDPR’s requirements.
  • Review employee, customer and supplier contracts, and update them if necessary to cover personal data processing.
  • Plan how to recognise and handle DSARs (data subject access requests) and provide responses within one calendar month.
  • Have a process in place for determining whether a DPIA is required.
  • Review whether your mechanisms for transferring data outside the EEA are compliant, especially after Brexit.

Solutions to help you improve your policies and procedures:

  • GDPR contract and legal services
    Get expert legal advice and support to update privacy notices, data protection policies, supplier contracts and international data transfer agreements in accordance with the GDPR.

    Enquire now

  • EU GDPR Documentation Toolkit
    Demonstrate your GDPR compliance with more than 80 indispensable policies, procedures, templates and worksheets to save you time and money on your GDPR compliance project.

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  • DPIA Workshop
    This one-day workshop covers when to conduct a DPIA under the GDPR and uses a real-life case study to demonstrate best practices and methodologies, including the application of a DPIA tool to help assess and address privacy risks.

    Book now

  • GDPR Manager
    The Gap Analysis module gives you instant visibility of your current compliance status, allowing you to easily identify the actions you need to take to protect your personal data in compliance with the GDPR and in conformance to BS 10012:2017

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7. Secure personal data through procedural and technical measures

Article 32 of the GDPR requires organisations to implement “appropriate technical and organisational measures” to ensure that personal data is processed appropriately.

What you need to do:

Solutions for improving data security measures:

8. Ensure teams are trained and competent

Staff awareness and education is a key component of any organisation’s GDPR compliance framework. Everyone involved in processing data must be appropriately trained to follow approved processes and procedures.

What you need to do

  • Ensure internal communications with stakeholders and staff are effective.
  • Train your employees to understand the importance of data protection, basic GDPR principles and the procedures you have implemented to ensure compliance.

Training solutions for GDPR compliance:

9. Monitor and audit compliance

GDPR compliance is an ongoing project – a journey rather than a destination. You should undertake periodic internal audits and regularly update your data protection processes. This includes checking your records of processing activities and consent, testing information security controls, and conducting DPIAs.

What you need to do

  • Schedule regular audits of data processing activities and security controls.
  • Keep records of personal data processing up to date.
  • Undertake DPIAs where required.
  • Assess data protection practices and manage some of the more demanding elements of GDPR compliance. 

Improve your GDPR compliance monitoring with these solutions:

  • GDPR Manager
    Enables organisations to manage a range of GDPR elements, such as recording and reporting data breaches, handling subject access requests, and monitoring third party compliance in a single platform.

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  • CyberComply
    Take total control of your cyber risk and data privacy management monitoring and compliance needs.  

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  • Live Online GDPR Consultancy
    Get expert advice on specific GDPR compliance issues whenever and wherever you need it with consultancy support by the hour. 

    Shop now

Achieve GDPR compliance with our all-in-one solutions

Whether you’ve just started your implementation project or are already on the way to compliance, our packages are a cost effect solution that will help you streamline your implementation project.

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