GDPR – Not Just a European Concern

GDPR – Not Just a European Concern
Alastair Paterson
Read More From Alastair Paterson
November 20, 2017 | 6 Min Read

This post originally appeared on SecurityWeek.

Europe Data Privacy

The recent Equifax breach that has been all over the news raises an interesting question: How would the situation have played out if it was after May 25, 2018 when the new General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) are due to come into force? While none of us has a crystal ball, we can bet the outcome for Equifax would be even worse.

This report provides comprehensive information on the GDPR but, in brief, the GDPR is a new set of regulations to protect the personal data and privacy of citizens of EU countries. It will affect any company that processes personal data of EU citizens – even if that company doesn’t have a presence in an EU country – making this legislation more than a European concern. To begin with, the regulations set a high standard for the speed with which businesses are required to report data breaches, in some cases within 72 hours after becoming aware of the breach. Companies also have to comply with each of these rights, transparently and without cost to EU citizens:

  • Right of data portability – if a customer asks for their data you are required to provide it
  • Right of removal – if a customer requests that their information be removed from your systems you are required to do so
  • Data transfer notification – prior to sharing customer data with a third party, you must notify the customer and gain explicit consent to share it
  • Customer access requests – if a customer asks whether or not you hold data on them, you are obligated to let them know

To satisfy the GDPR regulations, companies will likely need additional processes, technology and personnel in place. In a survey by PwC of U.S. companies, nearly 70% of respondents said they plan to spend between $1 million and $10 million to address GDPR obligations. While that may sound like a lot, it could pale in comparison to fines. Failure to comply with the GDPR can result in hefty financial penalties of up to 4 percent of global turnover or 20 million Euros (more than $23 million), whichever is greater in certain instances. For companies operating with razor-thin margins, profits could easily evaporate into thin air.

The need to comply with data privacy regulations is nothing new to U.S.-based companies. In fact certain states like California and Delaware have particularly strict rules around online data privacy. Further, the U.S. Department of Commerce has worked for some time to synchronize privacy legislation between the U.S. and the U.K. so that trade (mostly online) can be conducted successfully in the joint interest of both groups. This led to the creation of the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework designed to give concurrency to protection, meaning the same level of protection for EU citizens whether in the EU or the United States.  Companies based in the U.S. can self-certify that they provide “adequate” privacy protection and then must comply with the Framework’s requirements.

GDPR continues some of the core principles set out by this earlier legislation which helps ease the transition for companies that have maintained compliance. But differences including the 72-hour reporting deadline, exactly how ‘personal information’ is defined and the broader rights granted to EU citizens must be considered. So what can U.S.-based companies do to prepare for the GDPR? These five steps can help:

  1. Understand what data you have and where it is. Make sure you understand what data you hold on EU citizens.  If you don’t hold data on EU citizens then you need not concern yourself with the GDPR, but given the global nature of business this is unlikely to be the case. If you do hold EU citizen data then consider this: every company has a certain amount of data loss, yet many aren’t aware that they’ve already been breached. If you don’t already do so, proactively monitor sites on the open, deep and dark web for your customers’ information. Understanding any data leaks and addressing them now will give you a clean start when the GDPR goes into effect next year.
  2. Engage in supply chain security. Most businesses have a long supply chain. For example, it isn’t unusual for a Tier 1 financial institution to have 15,000 suppliers/partners who quite often hold proprietary information on the institution’s customers. Under the GDPR, both data controllers and data processors have protection and privacy obligations to EU citizens. Make sure your company’s security guidelines and controls with suppliers are adequate and that your suppliers are in compliance and following best practices.
  3. Complete the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield self-certification process. It is still unclear whether or not the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework will continue. However, companies that are self-certified when the GDPR goes into effect can demonstrate a commitment to protecting the data and privacy of EU citizens. This puts you further down the path of compliance with the GDPR and on more solid footing to continue business with EU companies and citizens during the transition.
  4. Establish GDPR compliance processes now. You need to establish and test processes in advance to ensure you know how and who to notify in the event of a breach. With only 72 hours to spare, you can’t afford to wait and figure it out ‘on the fly.’ Additionally, make sure you have identified processes to support all the other rights of EU citizens under the GDPR including data portability, removal, transfer notifications and access requests. Consider appointing a data protection officer to oversee these efforts.
  5. Seek legal counsel. All of these changes require considerable thought, time and effort. Before you go too far down the path of implementing processes and any supporting technologies required, seek professional legal advice to ensure that your chosen approaches suitably address the legislation.

Crystal ball or not, it’s clear that the GDPR is not just a European concern. What’s not yet clear is how quickly or severely the Information Commissioners Office will treat non-compliances in the early part of the legislation. Regardless, given the scope of requirements, affected U.S.-based companies should start to prepare now to mitigate risk.

Access Our Threat Intel In Test Drive

Test Drive SearchLight Free for 7 Days
Try It Now

Connect with us

Tags:

Related Posts

Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Week 2 – Security Devices at Home and Work

Cybersecurity Awareness Month: Week 2 – Security Devices at Home and Work

October 14, 2020 | 7 Min Read

This week, National Cyber Security Awareness...
Clickbait to Checkmate: SMS-based scam targets US smartphones and accesses victim locations

Clickbait to Checkmate: SMS-based scam targets US smartphones and accesses victim locations

October 13, 2020 | 11 Min Read

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic,...
Help your development teams keep their keys safe

Help your development teams keep their keys safe

October 7, 2020 | 3 Min Read

Modern development practices are a blessing...
Four Ways to Validate Credentials in SearchLight

Four Ways to Validate Credentials in SearchLight

September 29, 2020 | 3 Min Read

Amid the billions of credentials that are...
Access Keys Exposed: More Than 40% Are For Database Stores

Access Keys Exposed: More Than 40% Are For Database Stores

September 14, 2020 | 6 Min Read

By now, we’ve all heard news about AWS...
Validate Exposed Credentials with Okta to Save Even More Time

Validate Exposed Credentials with Okta to Save Even More Time

August 24, 2020 | 3 Min Read

SearchLight customers can now automatically...
Account takeover: Expanding on impact

Account takeover: Expanding on impact

July 27, 2020 | 7 Min Read

Digital Shadows has collected over 15 billion...
SearchLight’s Credential Validation: Only Focus on What Matters

SearchLight’s Credential Validation: Only Focus on What Matters

July 14, 2020 | 4 Min Read

Of the many use cases associated with threat...
Reducing technical leakage: Detecting software exposure from the outside-in

Reducing technical leakage: Detecting software exposure from the outside-in

June 16, 2020 | 6 Min Read

Modern Development Practices Leads to...
The 2020 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report: One CISO’s View

The 2020 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report: One CISO’s View

May 19, 2020 | 6 Min Read

Sadly, Marvel’s Black Widow release date was...
A NEW DECADE OF CYBER THREATS: LOOKING BACK AT THE TRENDING CYBER TOPICS OF Q1 2020

A NEW DECADE OF CYBER THREATS: LOOKING BACK AT THE TRENDING CYBER TOPICS OF Q1 2020

May 14, 2020 | 10 Min Read

Q1 2020 was packed full of significant...
How to minimize cybersecurity breaches in 2020

How to minimize cybersecurity breaches in 2020

April 8, 2020 | 9 Min Read

Seriously, don’t click back or close – I...
COVID-19: Third-party risks to businesses

COVID-19: Third-party risks to businesses

March 31, 2020 | 5 Min Read

As social distancing becomes more prevalent...
Threat Model of a Remote Worker

Threat Model of a Remote Worker

March 25, 2020 | 7 Min Read

Threat models are an often discussed but...
Want to Control Your Ever-Changing Perimeter? Focus on Integrations.

Want to Control Your Ever-Changing Perimeter? Focus on Integrations.

March 4, 2020 | 5 Min Read

An ever changing perimeter? Over the past few...
How Digital Shadows Helped Find and Remediate an Exposed Admin Password on Github

How Digital Shadows Helped Find and Remediate an Exposed Admin Password on Github

January 23, 2020 | 5 Min Read

  I often get asked to share examples of...
Third Party Risk: 4 ways to manage your security ecosystem

Third Party Risk: 4 ways to manage your security ecosystem

January 16, 2020 | 5 Min Read

  The digital economy has multiplied the...
2020 Cybersecurity Forecasts: 5 trends and predictions for the new year

2020 Cybersecurity Forecasts: 5 trends and predictions for the new year

December 18, 2019 | 10 Min Read

  If all the holiday fuss isn’t...
2.3 billion files exposed across online file storage technologies

2.3 billion files exposed across online file storage technologies

December 3, 2019 | 17 Min Read

Originally published May 2019 2.3 billion is a...
Understanding the Consequences of Data Leakage through History

Understanding the Consequences of Data Leakage through History

October 24, 2019 | 4 Min Read

One of the most interesting aspects of...
Honeypots: Tracking Attacks Against Misconfigured or Exposed Services

Honeypots: Tracking Attacks Against Misconfigured or Exposed Services

October 17, 2019 | 9 Min Read

Honeypots can be useful tools for gathering...
ANU Breach Report: Mapping to Mitre ATT&CK Framework

ANU Breach Report: Mapping to Mitre ATT&CK Framework

October 11, 2019 | 14 Min Read

Introduction This week, the Australian National...
DevSecOps: Continued Database Exposures Point to Growing Challenges

DevSecOps: Continued Database Exposures Point to Growing Challenges

September 24, 2019 | 5 Min Read

Last week, we learned that millions of...
Your Data at Risk: FBI Cyber Division Shares Top Emerging Cyber Threats to Your Enterprise

Your Data at Risk: FBI Cyber Division Shares Top Emerging Cyber Threats to Your Enterprise

September 17, 2019 | 8 Min Read

Data breaches are not slowing down. Nobody...
Capital One Breach: What we know and what you can do

Capital One Breach: What we know and what you can do

July 31, 2019 | 5 Min Read

Monday blues. It’s a thing. It’s when you...
Harnessing Exposed Data to Enhance Cyber Intelligence

Harnessing Exposed Data to Enhance Cyber Intelligence

July 11, 2019 | 7 Min Read

  An illicit and lucrative trade has...
Leaky SMB File Shares – So Many Bytes!

Leaky SMB File Shares – So Many Bytes!

June 19, 2019 | 5 Min Read

Everyone loves a sequel. If you’re an avid...
Managing Digital Risk: 4 Steps to Take

Managing Digital Risk: 4 Steps to Take

June 18, 2019 | 9 Min Read

Organizations are finding it increasingly...
Enabling Soi Dog’s Digital Transformation: A Case Study

Enabling Soi Dog’s Digital Transformation: A Case Study

May 8, 2019 | 3 Min Read

At the beginning of this year I was introduced to...
Reducing your attack surface

Reducing your attack surface

April 9, 2019 | 4 Min Read

What is an attack surface According to OWASP, an...
Detecting Exposed Company Data: The What, Why, and How

Detecting Exposed Company Data: The What, Why, and How

March 12, 2019 | 3 Min Read

What is data loss detection? A fundamental...
Introducing Our Practical Guide to Reducing Digital Risk

Introducing Our Practical Guide to Reducing Digital Risk

February 12, 2019 | 5 Min Read

Download a copy of A Practical Guide to Reducing...
Understanding Digital Risk Protection

Understanding Digital Risk Protection

February 8, 2019 | 3 Min Read

There has been a lot of talk recently about...
SingHealth Breach Post-mortem: Key Findings

SingHealth Breach Post-mortem: Key Findings

January 29, 2019 | 5 Min Read

On 10 January 2019, Singaporean authorities...
Law Firm Uncovers Exposed Sensitive Details About Top Attorney Online

Law Firm Uncovers Exposed Sensitive Details About Top Attorney Online

November 15, 2018 | 2 Min Read

VIPs and executives who are critical to your...
81,000 Hacked Facebook Accounts for Sale: 5 Things to Know

81,000 Hacked Facebook Accounts for Sale: 5 Things to Know

November 2, 2018 | 5 Min Read

This morning, the British Broadcasting...
Cyber Security Awareness Month: Week 1 – Credential Hygiene

Cyber Security Awareness Month: Week 1 – Credential Hygiene

October 3, 2018 | 5 Min Read

It’s the opening week of the annual National...
GAO’s Equifax Post-mortem Report

GAO’s Equifax Post-mortem Report

September 11, 2018 | 5 Min Read

It’s common for the exciting and novel issues...
Digital Shadows Contributes to Insider Threat Research

Digital Shadows Contributes to Insider Threat Research

August 9, 2018 | 5 Min Read

On July 30, Forrester published its latest...
Reducing Your Attack Surface: From a Firehose to a Straw

Reducing Your Attack Surface: From a Firehose to a Straw

July 5, 2018 | 6 Min Read

What is Attack Surface Reduction? Attack Surface...
Keys to the Kingdom: Exposed Security Assessments

Keys to the Kingdom: Exposed Security Assessments

April 24, 2018 | 4 Min Read

Organizations employ external consultants and...
Out In The Open: Corporate Secrets Exposed Through Misconfigured Services

Out In The Open: Corporate Secrets Exposed Through Misconfigured Services

April 18, 2018 | 4 Min Read

For organizations dealing with proprietary...
When There’s No Need to Hack: Exposed Personal Information

When There’s No Need to Hack: Exposed Personal Information

April 17, 2018 | 4 Min Read

With Equifax‘s breach of 145 million records...
Leveraging the 2018 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report

Leveraging the 2018 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report

April 10, 2018 | 5 Min Read

Today, the 11th edition of the Verizon Data...
When Sharing Is Not Caring: Over 1.5 Billion Files Exposed Through Misconfigured Services

When Sharing Is Not Caring: Over 1.5 Billion Files Exposed Through Misconfigured Services

April 5, 2018 | 4 Min Read

Our recent report “Too Much Information”,...
Ransomware in 2018: 4 Things to Look Out For

Ransomware in 2018: 4 Things to Look Out For

March 8, 2018 | 4 Min Read

Ransomware remains an active threat for...
Data Privacy Day: 8 Key Recommendations for GDPR Readiness

Data Privacy Day: 8 Key Recommendations for GDPR Readiness

January 26, 2018 | 4 Min Read

This Sunday is Data Privacy Day, “an...
Don’t Rely on One Star to Manage Digital Risk, The Key is Total Coverage

Don’t Rely on One Star to Manage Digital Risk, The Key is Total Coverage

January 16, 2018 | 5 Min Read

This post originally appeared on...
GDPR: Why You Need to Consider the Personal Data That Lies Outside of Your Organization

GDPR: Why You Need to Consider the Personal Data That Lies Outside of Your Organization

January 4, 2018 | 3 Min Read

In 2010, reports emerged that the Information...
Why “Have a Safe Trip” Is Taking On Greater Meaning

Why “Have a Safe Trip” Is Taking On Greater Meaning

November 14, 2017 | 5 Min Read

This post originally appeared...
equifax research report

2017 Equifax Breach: Impact and Lessons Learned

September 28, 2017 | 3 Min Read

Equifax experienced a data breach that occurred...
equifax breach update

An Update on the Equifax Data Breach

September 13, 2017 | 8 Min Read

The credit reporting agency Equifax...
Equifax Breach Assessment

Equifax Breach: The Impact For Enterprises and Consumers

September 8, 2017 | 9 Min Read

What we know about the Equifax breach On...
Credential Exposure Data Loss Blog

Bitglass: Compromised Credentials are Just One Way Your Corporate Data is Being Exposed

August 18, 2017 | 2 Min Read

A guest blog from Bitglass, read the original...
NIST Authentication

Authentication Nation: 5 Ways NIST is Changing How We Think About Passwords

May 9, 2017 | 4 Min Read

Passwords have taken a beating over the past...
Brand Reputation Digital Risk

The 3 Pillars of Digital Risk Management: Part 3 – The Top 5 Main Risks of Reputational Damage

April 27, 2017 | 2 Min Read

In this 3-part blog series, we discuss how each...
Cyber Threats

The 3 Pillars of Digital Risk Management: Part 1 Understanding Cyber Threats

April 13, 2017 | 3 Min Read

What is Digital Risk Management? The National...
Five Tips To Make Your Passwords Better

Five Tips To Make Your Passwords Better

September 26, 2016 | 4 Min Read

While security is everyone’s responsibility,...
breached data

The Industrialized Uses of Breached Data

September 21, 2016 | 4 Min Read

In our first blog, we outlined a number of...
credential compromise

Beauty and the Breach: Leaked Credentials in Context

September 21, 2016 | 4 Min Read

Our analysts recently researched credential...
New report: 97 percent of the top 1,000 companies suffer from credential compromise

New report: 97 percent of the top 1,000 companies suffer from credential compromise

September 20, 2016 | 2 Min Read

Data breaches and credential compromise are not...
Shadow Brokers

Four Things We’ve Learned From the Alleged Equation Group Code Leak

August 22, 2016 | 4 Min Read

The wake of the deeply bizarre auction of...
Wall of Sheep

Gambling with Security in Vegas: Not Your Best Bet

July 27, 2016 | 4 Min Read

With BSides Las Vegas, Black Hat, and DEF CON...
thedarkoverlord

Thedarkoverlord – losing his patients?

July 26, 2016 | 4 Min Read

In late June 2016, we observed a spate of attacks...
breach disclosure

5 Key Lessons From The FDIC’s Breach Disclosure Debacle

July 18, 2016 | 4 Min Read

Last week, the United States House Science, Space...
thedarkoverlord

10 ways to prepare for credential leak incidents

June 30, 2016 | 2 Min Read

From LinkedIn to MySpace, threat actors like...
OpAfrica

Data breaches targeting financial services: 2016 so far

May 26, 2016 | 3 Min Read

It’s been a busy year for data breaches...
Bozkurt Hackers

Bozkurt Hackers continue to leak bank data

May 13, 2016 | 4 Min Read

A threat actor calling itself “Bozkurt...
DBIR

Analyzing the 2016 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report

May 2, 2016 | 4 Min Read

Last week Verizon released the 2016 Data Breach...
Hacking Team

The Hacking Team breach – an attacker’s point of view

April 22, 2016 | 3 Min Read

On 17 April 2016, two posts were added to...
ransomware

Emerging Markets: Online Extortion Matures via DDoS Attacks

November 9, 2015 | 5 Min Read

Unlike scenes from books or movies where shadowy...
TalkTalk

TalkTalk: Avoiding The Hype

October 28, 2015 | 4 Min Read

There has been no shortage of media coverage on...
Adult Friend Finder

The Adult Friend Finder Breach: A Recap

September 7, 2015 | 5 Min Read

27th May 2015: Last week, news quickly...
Al Hayat

Saudi Arabia MOFA Breach

September 7, 2015 | 5 Min Read

Introduction As of April 2015 there were more...