Data Privacy

Why is Data Protection and Privacy Awareness Training Important?

Don’t be surprised. The world has reached a stage where one’s data is no longer private property to themselves. Since companies collecting personal data were not transparent about how they handled the data, privacy and data protection laws were enacted. The primary reason is the increasing rate of data breaches every day.

In this data-driven age, every employee must be aware of what data they are dealing with and what information they share with the public.

Intending to make this process stricter, countries have enacted various laws to make it a practice for every company to put data protection at the forefront. As per United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), out of 194 countries, 134 countries have already developed laws to protect an individual’s data and privacy.

What are the important data protection and privacy regulations around the globe? 

GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) – European Union 

Regarded as the world’s stringent privacy and security law, GDPR was enacted by the European Union and came into effect on May 25, 2018. This regulation significantly impacts organisations worldwide that target or gather data concerning EU citizens. The law grants individuals the right to access, rectify, erase, restrict processing, data portability, and object to data processing.

California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) 

The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) is a regulation introduced to strengthen privacy rights and consumer protection for California residents. This law requires businesses to be transparent about the information they collect and gives consumers rights, including the right to access, delete, and opt out of the sale of their personal information.

Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) – Canada 

PIPEDA is a federal privacy law that takes into account the collection, use, and PIPEDA is a federal privacy law that takes into account the collection, use and disclosure of personal information by private-sector organisations in Canada. Various principles are built into it, such as accountability, identifying purposes, consent, limiting collection, limiting use, disclosure and retention, accuracy, safeguards, openness, individual access, and challenging compliance.

Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA) Singapore 

PDPA Act focuses on the processing of personal data by organisations within Singapore. It also looked at the data collected overseas and transferred into the city-state. The purpose of PDPA is “To govern the collection, use and disclosure of personal data by organisations in a manner that recognises both the right of individuals to protect their data and the need of organisations to collect, use or disclose personal data for purposes that a reasonable person would consider appropriate in the circumstances.”

Data Protect Act 2018 (DPA) – United Kingdom 

Implemented in the UK, the act encompasses GDPR and areas outside GDPR’s scope, such as law enforcement and national security. Individual rights and principles are similar to those of GDPR. Nevertheless, the DPA includes special provisions for processing data by intelligent services and other public authorities.

How to design and deliver an effective data protection and privacy awareness program? 

Various methods can be adopted to train your employees on DPAP effectively.

1. Provide role-based DPAP awareness training. 

Develop courses that are customised to a department. For example, the HR department. An HR deals with both customer and internal employee data. Hence, they need a separate personalised course that helps safeguard confidential data under the HR department.

2. Gamification

Gamified modules capture employees’ attention more effectively, making the content engaging and interactive.

3. Cover all applicable data privacy laws

Ensure that you incorporate the data protection and privacy laws that are necessary for each department and customise accordingly.

4. Include assessments to check the effectiveness of the training provided 

Incorporating assessments into the content facilitates on-the-go learning, enabling employees to grasp concepts more efficiently without realising they’ve gone through the assessment process.

5. Make training a continuous and recurring process. 

Offer training courses periodically to ensure employees remain current on data protection and privacy developments, including new laws and amendments.

6. Deliver microlearning courses 

Microlearning courses can be a go-to training method for an engaged workforce because of the ‘one objective a course’ approach. This reduces the cognitive load and increases the attention span of an employee since the course delivers the information in a 5 to 10-minute microlearning course.

Here is a recommendation to prepare your DPAP awareness training syllabus. 

  1. Introduction to data protection and privacy.
    1. What is data?
    2. What is sensitive data?
    3. What is personal data?
    4. What is privacy?
    5. What is data protection?
    6. Differentiate between what is privacy and data protection.
  1. Fundamental Concepts
    1. Data Processing
    2. Data processors
    3. Data controllers
    4. Data subject
    5. Data Protection Authority
  1. Understanding the key principles of data privacy
    1. Lawfulness, Fairness and Transparency
    2. Purpose Limitation
    3. Data minimisation
    4. Accuracy
    5. Storage Limitation
    6. Integrity and confidentiality
    7. Accountability

Cross-border data flow privacy concerns

Wrapping Up

In conclusion, every employee must undergo security awareness training for a company to be legally compliant. Addressing legal compliance challenges involves monitoring which employees have completed the training, their attendance, and their final scores.