Businesses and organizations across the United States collect user data for understanding online consumer behavior and thinking. This data plays an essential role in product innovation for meeting audience needs. With that said, companies are required to protect customer information and comply with data privacy laws to do this legally.
Businesses in Alabama need to be familiar with California Online Privacy Protection Act (CCPA) and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Privacy compliance is essential because it restricts business freedom and protects consumer interests. You should consult with a qualified business law attorney that helps you navigate this challenging legal landscape and avoid heavy sanctions or fines against your company.
Data Privacy Laws Protect Users’ Right to Privacy
In the same way that you cannot force a person sitting next to you on a flight to tell their name, you cannot trick or push people online to give up their personal information. In situations where an individual allows an online business to store this information, the information should only be used for proper and legal reasons.
For instance, you cannot sell someone’s details to a third party without consent. As a business, you need to comply with this fundamental right to privacy if you want to avoid heavy penalties and maintain your brand’s reputation.
Maintain Your Brand Image
In today’s online shopping world, almost everyone buys things online. Entering your name, contact information, email address, and location is a normal part of the transaction. With that said, it’s critical that businesses promise to use this information only for sending updates about any upcoming products or related things.
Consumers may not appreciate getting bombarded with marketing calls, emails, and texts from other numerous brands. They may not want excessive advertisements from you either. You may lose the consumer and become “that website” that sells information. You may also have complaints filed against you.
You need to respect and follow international data privacy laws to avoid this from happening. You also need to show that you are trustworthy.
Data Privacy Law Compliance to Avoid Data Breaches
A data breach refers to a security violation where sensitive information gets stolen and used. If this happens to your brand, you will lose customer trust. In fact, recovering the stolen data may just happen to cost you a lot more.
Businesses need to have strong data security measures for privacy compliance. You can avoid data breaches and any damage caused to your business by complying with these laws.
Noncompliance Can be Expensive
The biggest reason to comply with data privacy laws is that you may end up paying more than you could possibly save with non-compliance. You may be slapped with a fine if you don’t follow the laws. In severe cases, the head of a business or the person responsible may also face arrest. Facebook, in 2018, had to pay a whopping $18.6 billion in fines because they violated the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
The Federal Trade Commission in the US is empowered by the Federal Trade Commission Act (FTC Act) to pursue any company that violates its Privacy Policies. Businesses guaranteeing consumer data privacy are required to follow through on their promise.
In 2020, the FTC issued a complaint against Zoom because they falsely advertised the use of 256-bit end-to-end encryption for video chats. In reality, the company used less secure privacy measures than they told the public.
Protecting Your Customer’s Data
Businesses need to ensure data privacy is part of their effective standard operating procedure (SOP). This can help with building customer trust, complying with data privacy laws, and helping prevent potential breaches. These are a few steps you can take to comply with data privacy laws:
- Research: You need to identify the data privacy laws that apply to your company. You need to find the consumer protection laws that can shield your customers, business, and employees.
- Create an SOP: You need to build a policy related to operational, financial, and sales tasks.
- Infrastructure Solutions: You may not have the budget for training or employing a privacy protection department, but you need to make sure you can monitor your organization’s data and bolster security efforts by using a data privacy platform.
- Experts: A knowledgeable law firm can help you understand all applicable laws, consult on legal implications, and build a thorough SOP.
Get a Skilled and Knowledgeable Business Law Attorney on Your Side
At BHM Law Group, our attorneys realize the importance of data privacy regulations and the need for businesses to keep up with the ever-evolving and increasingly challenging legal landscape. We have helped many businesses become compliant with data privacy and other laws. To request a consultation, call us at (205) 964-9764 or complete this online form.