The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has had some distinctly beneficial effects when it comes to consumer trust and data security, according to a new survey.
Cybersecurity company Check Point surveyed a thousand board-level executives and IT and security managers at companies in France, Spain, Italy, Germany, and the United Kingdom about their progress in conforming to the GDPR. The results indicate that the regulation appears to be positively influencing organisations in Europe.
In terms of the benefits GDPR is expected to bring in the long term, 45% of respondents cited enhanced customer loyalty resulting from taking better care of customer data. Some 44% of respondents also cited improved operational efficiency, particularly for cybersecurity. Many companies are also benefiting from a detailed overview of how they process data, with 40% of respondents mentioning this.
The vast majority (83%) of companies surveyed also said they used cloud-based solutions in some form, although following the GDPR’s introduction, many became more wary about how they used the cloud. Despite this, just 7% of companies went as far as dropping cloud-based solutions entirely.
GDPR compliance also seems to be improving throughout the continent. Just over half (53%) of the organisations reported having established a working group specifically for the GDPR. Some 45% of them said they had allocated resources in their budgets to fund compliance with the GDPR, while another 41% said they had used the services of GDPR consultants.
The respondents were also questioned about what measures they had taken to improve their security in their GDPR compliance efforts. Some 44% said they had brought in standard security measures, while 41% said they had trained their employees to better understand the risks to data security. Another 41% also said they had adopted access and encryption control systems.
The head of product marketing at Check Point Software, Rafi Kretchmer, said about the findings:
"What's clear from this research is that many European organizations have made significant progress in implementing the steps required to become GDPR compliant. And quite a few are already seeing powerful benefits. But for many firms, there's still a lot that can be done. It's important for organisations to adopt robust frameworks to meet the demands of GDPR, rather than simply shutting down access to tools and platforms that both employees and customers want to use—like mobile devices and the cloud. There are relatively easy-to-integrate methods of keeping data safe—such as document encryption and hard drive encryption.”
He added that such techniques could help ensure the protection of sensitive data, thus preventing unauthorised access and data breaches.
The new survey adds to the growing body of evidence for how the GDPR is actually having a positive effect on business rather than simply being a regulatory burden. If you would like to learn about how GDPR compliance can benefit your organisation, we at Pro-Networks are more than happy to discuss this with you in plain English. With our managed IT services, we can tailor a package of technology and training to suit your situation and budget, as well as help you become GDPR compliant in the process.