The role of the DPO or Data Protection Officer is to ensure that the company processes personal data in accordance with applicable data protection rules, including Data Protection Impact Assessments (DPIA). The data concerned are those of its staff, customers, suppliers, and others. The person in charge must therefore inform, educate, and advise all employees of the companies they work for on the applicable European and national laws, regulations and standards. In addition to educating employees on the subject, he or she must ensure compliance with data protection laws and practices and notify teams and authorities in the event of a data breach.
Why have a Data Protection Officer?
Your organisation needs a DPO if its core activities involve the processing of sensitive data on a large scale, whether it’s as a data controller or a data processor. You must also appoint a DPO if your activities involve the regular monitoring of individuals on a large scale. When we are talking about large-scale data, it’s for a company that manages a considerable amount of personal data which may affect a large number of data subjects and which is likely to give rise to high risks due to their sensitive nature, such as data processed by a hospital, a transport organisation or an insurance company.
If a company does not put in place the means to protect its data, this can have several bad consequences. In the event that the company is hacked, this can have an impact on several levels such as disruption of productivity, and exposure of confidential information. If this happens, it can also affect the reputation of the business, customers will no longer want to trust the business because they know they are not safe giving out their information and the loss of customer loyalty can lead to the permanent bankruptcy of the business. There may also be a legal impact. Since the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) exists, the financial penalties can be as high as 20 million Euros, or in the case of a company, up to 4% of annual worldwide turnover.
DPO as a service
Although a DPO is not necessarily a full-time role, it requires specialised expertise in data protection. The DPO must be independent, reporting directly to the highest level of management. The Data Protection Officer can be an existing employee of the company but does not have to be, and can be appointed from an external source. Several companies can share the same DPO. Having an outsourced data protection department is a cost-effective solution to improve information security and compliance with data protection laws, such as the GDPR, and provides your business with flexible and personalised data protection support, advice and expertise. This Data Protection Officer must have the expertise required by Article 37 of the GDPR and must also maintain the neutrality and impartiality required by the Regulation.
At CRIBB we offer an outsourced DPO service, helping you with the development of your DPO, UK DPO, worldwide data protection advice and providing you with a free consultation. For more information, please visit our website and contact us.