Data privacy management, also known as information privacy management, is an important part of information technology (IT) that involves the ability of a company or an individual to monitor and determine what types of data within their computer system can be shared with third parties.
Usually, a company will use a data privacy management platform to manage and protect the information that the company collects. A recent example of data privacy legislation went into effect on May 25, 2018, when the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) forced companies who deal with personal, identifiable information of EU and EEA citizens, to comply with the new regulations.
In general, a company must get the customer’s consent before collecting data. If the company does not comply, it will be in violation of the GDPR regulations. Companies will often employ any of the following measures to ensure data privacy:
- Implementation of security measures, such as firewalls;
- The screening of customers to ensure confidentiality;
- The usage of non-disclosure agreements to keep sensitive information private;
- Hiring a data privacy management company to manage data; and/or
- Retaining legal counsel to continually monitor company privacy policies against state and federal laws.
What are Some Common Data Privacy Violations?
The most common data privacy violations involve consent. If a customer’s personal information, such as a Social Security number, is sold to a third party without the customer’s consent, then the company has broken the law.
As mentioned above, when the new GDPR regulations went into effect, companies around the world scrambled to update their privacy policies. Even though they may not have a legal presence in the EU or EEA, if they have just one customer from any of those countries, they must be in compliance or run the risk of receiving a data privacy violation.
Other common data privacy violations may include:
- Revealing private employee information to other employers without the employee’s consent
- Posting an image of a person’s face on an advertisement without the person’s consent
- The use of fraud, misrepresentation, or deceit to obtain personal information
- Negligence in the handling of sensitive information
- The disclosure of sensitive information for profit
Are There Any Legal Remedies for Data Privacy Legal Issues?
In instances where a data privacy breach occurred, the legal ramifications can be serious. Data breaches can cause great harm to victims, including identity theft and disruption of their lives and businesses. Remedies for such violations may include:
- Compensatory damages for financial losses
- Implementation of new data privacy management procedures within the company
- Website privacy violation remedies
- Punitive damages
- Criminal penalties in certain cases
The legal repercussions for data privacy issues can be severe. It is also not uncommon for class action lawsuits to follow violations that have affected a large number of people.
Should I Hire a Lawyer for Help with a Data Privacy Lawsuit?
If you have questions regarding data privacy, you should contact a local business lawyer in your area. An experienced attorney can help to ensure your company is compliant with federal and state privacy laws, in addition to providing legal representation for any violation issues.