Who was breached today? This is the common question. Days are gone where we wonder if a business was breached or if our data was stolen from a public system. But what happens after May 25th, 2018 when GDPR is in full effect?
With the European Union’s (EU) enactment of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), if breached systems contain European citizen information then specific steps and the timing of those steps are now mandated.
How many cases have we seen where U.S. companies are taking weeks, months, to even a year to disclose to their customers that their data has been inappropriately accessed, lost or stolen? In the recent case of Uber’s announcement, it took them more than one year to notify their customers of a massive data breach. Uber announced that over 57 million people were affected by their data breach and that 2.7 million were located in the UK.
How would this look under GDPR and the EU’s new watchful eye and powerful penalties? The EU wants to ensure communications of data breaches are accurate and timely. According to GDPR Article 33, any business who is suffering a breach of EU citizen information must notify the EU authorities within 72 hours. And the notice must contain, at a minimum; Nature of the breach, Name and contact details of the company’s Data Protection Officer (DPO), Description of the likely consequences, and a description of the corrective steps being taken. Secondarily, the business must also notify the EU citizens under Article 34 definitions. This article requires that notice is given “without undue delay” and the content of the breach notice to be a subset of the information sent to the EU authorities.
These few rules will change how many global U.S. companies handle breach notification and it will undoubtedly impact their processes for incident management. The good news is that we are seeing many companies implement GDPR in a holistic way whereby they are including all customer data, regardless of citizenship, in their data classification strategy when approaching GDPR. This means that these companies will treat all customer data the same way as they need to under GDPR, and not silo EU citizen information, which would require a duplication of many business processes. GDPR is also helping these larger multinational businesses understand the value and role of the DPO, the one responsible for the assurance of the new privacy controls.
The GDPR may be one of the largest privacy regulations the world has ever seen, but it may be just in time. In a world of constant data breaches, we all need to be more diligent and concerned of how companies collect and use our data, share that information with their third party suppliers, and keep us notified of the access to our information.
*American Cyber Security Management (AmericanCSM.com) is focused on reducing your risk of data misuse. We do this through our Security, Privacy and DevOps offerings, delivered by seasoned experts. Our Security offerings reduce your risk at the Infrastructure, Network, and Application levels.