ATET Security

3 Reasons to Hire a Data Protection Consultant Immediately

Data protection consulting is about advising on aspects of data protection compliance. If your organization collects and processes data from your consumers, then regulations dictate you hire a Data Protection Officer or DPO. But why and what laws do the DPO comply with?

Why do I need a DPO?

Regulations like the Data Privacy Act of 2012 require that one data protection officer handle both PICs (personal information controllers) and PIPs (personal information processors). Many countries are implementing privacy regulations regarding data security and having one person ensure the protection of personal data is an absolute must. Data Protection as A Service, or DPaaS, is a cost-effective method for organizations to complete their international data security requirements without breaking the bank. DPOs provide your organization with updated and comprehensive approaches to regulatory compliance.

Topics we will cover are:

  • The Personal Data Privacy Act of Singapore (PDPA)
  • Amendments to the current PDPA Act (circa 2021)
  • The responsibilities of a Data Protection Officer

1. Personal Data Protection Act (Singapore)

Put into place in 2012, the PDPA is a local statute that ensures data protection and proper usage. Below is a quick checklist to ascertain if your organization is on the right track.

Quick PDPA Compliance Checklist

The more important requirements in order to comply with the PDPA are:

  • Appoint a DPO

PDPA requirements state that companies must appoint a DPO to oversee data management. This can technically be internal staff, however, experts are recommended especially when your firm handles sensitive customer data. The DPO will be in charge of maintaining and regularly monitoring data subjects at all times.

  • Data assessment and privacy design

Any data privacy service or process needs to be designed with top-notch data privacy services in mind. They must apply applicable privacy requirements with new products or releases for public use and the digital economy. DPOs must audit data processes or any business strategy involving an entire supply chain to prevent both internal and external breaches from happening.

  • Data Collection, Retention and Erasure Consent

Although less restrictive than the widely popularised GDPR, Singapore’s PDPA do state that you must notify customers that their data is being stored. Similarly, a customer is authorised to delete their data when requested to do so.

  • Education and transparency

It is therefore pertinent that businesses educate and act transparently to their customers by creating a privacy policy page. Such a page should be presented before every customer transaction to facilitate trust and transparency. Evidently, it is important that important terms within the privacy policy are made abundantly clear throughout customer touchpoints — seemingly unrelated information like how your collected Email is being used (i.e “We will only send promotional Emails once every week”, “We use your Email to tailor Ads for you on Social Media”) would bridge the distrust between customers and businesses.

  • Consumer empowerment and Limiting liability

Hence, one may also choose to empower their consumers with choices regarding how their data is used. Much like the aforementioned example, customers should be able to choose which platform they would like to restrict data usage in. There are many ways to limit liability, however, suits regarding vicarious liability and laws of tort still pose a massive threat to any data-centric business. Hence, a DPO can help foresee potential liabilities before any lawsuits occur.

2. Latest updates on the PDPA (February & October 2021)

Probably a core reason why hiring a DPO is necessary is due to the statutory amendments made in a fast-moving industry. Below are some of the latest policy changes:

Notification of breach

When companies experience a data breach that posits significant harm towards 500+ individuals, companies must inform the PDPC within 3 calendar days, while notifying the affected individuals.

Criminal offences

Misuse of data for the following activities could make employees, employers or corporations liable:

  • Disclosure of personal data
  • Usage of personal data for gain or losses towards the person
  • Re-identifying anonymous data

Such breaches would carry a fine of $5,000 or imprisonment of up to 2 years. Aside from criminal charges, affected individuals can file civil suits.

Defence against breaches by individuals (Professionals, Directors, Partners etc.)

This new policy aims to protect individuals from corporations and criminal liabilities. If customers give permission for the usage of data for company relevant (included within privacy policy and PDPA) usage or disclosure — then would individuals have their liabilities limited.

3. Data Protection Consulting

Using DPO as a Service, outsourced DPOs are normally expertise in both the technical and legal aspects of data privacy regulations. In-house DPOs are required regardless of in order to keep your data mapping with regulatory requirements. A well-versed DPO will save your organization from data breaches and future-proof your company for future compliance.

Some tasks you can expect them to complete are:

  • Creating proactive measures for monitoring an organization’s regulatory compliance;
  • Training employees to raise awareness with data protection related topics and their data protection responsibilities;
  • Assuring that a company’s internal processes and daily operations match up with data privacy standards;
  • Becoming the liaison between related authorities and the organization in question.

Write to us!

All companies require a DPO to handle their data mapping and to align them with the current data privacy protocol. If you’re interested in outsourcing a DPO for your company, consider visiting ATET Security. DPOs outsourced from this company are adept at performing the comprehensive risk assessments your business needs to thrive in the cyberworld.