Data privacy hasn’t always been a priority—let alone a strategic consideration—for many organizations. In a 2005 CSO article titled Top Ten Strategic Priorities for Information Security, data privacy doesn’t even appear. Fast-forward to late 2019, and data privacy and security not only make it on the list but take the number-one spot in a strategic priority survey of CFOs and vice presidents of finance. This strategic shift highlights the continually growing power of data and the need to protect it.
It’s no secret that data is taking on a greater role in companies of all sizes. And smart organizations are recognizing that data privacy protection is no longer a nice-to-have-in-the-future option but a necessity. A quick scan of LinkedIn job listings reveals the huge need for data privacy professionals—evidence of data privacy as a strategic consideration.
As companies face the ever-growing challenges of changing data protection regulations (e.g., GDPR), a constantly evolving threat landscape, and consumers who are educated about privacy rights such as CCPA, it’s no wonder data privacy security has become a success-defining factor. Companies that consistently not only protect data privacy but also demonstrate that competence avoid non-compliance costs and gain consumer confidence and loyalty among other advantages.
With full knowledge that data privacy security has never been more important, companies are evolving to meet compliance requirements and attain the many benefits of a strong data privacy approach. Traditional siloed and reactive security measures are no longer capable of consistent data protection. Companies that prioritize data privacy are constantly evaluating and shoring up security practices through audit services and security gap analysis. These practices identify compliance deficiencies and reveal vulnerabilities. In addition, companies must clearly identify which data needs to be protected and provide ongoing education and training to instill the need for data protection vigilance to each and every employee.