Darren Gower (pictured), Marketing Director at Eclipse spoke to LPM Magazine to discuss how law firms should be efficiently handling GDPR regulations.
A year on from the introduction of GDPR, and adhering to its policies has never been more important than it is today. Not just from a compliance perspective – and being compliant will save you from being issued with fines – but in terms of the security of your law firm.
Research recently unveiled by the government shows that GDPR has, at least in part, contributed to the decline in cyber attacks against businesses in the UK. In fact, the number of companies who have experienced some sort of breach or attack went down from 43 percent to 32 percent.
According to the government’s report, each cyber security “breach” or “incident” costs large businesses an average of £22,700. So GDPR is a cost-saving exercise in more ways than one – it can prevent you from being fined and protect you from malicious attacks.
GDPR compliance pleases the regulators, it’s good for your clients, and it also has a positive effect on your bottom line. Which is why it’s so surprising that many firms don’t have efficient systems and processes in place to ensure everything is above board.
Sure, your business may not have violated any rules as of yet, but without a suitable plan of action for handling data, and dealing with Subject Access Requests, you could be walking on a tightrope.
It only takes one failure for the regulators to step in and start issuing penalties.
Implementing an entirely new system, or modifying the one you have, might be an expense you’re not particularly happy about paying. But it will undoubtedly save you money in the long run. An efficient, modernised organisational structure can make all the difference.
That means centralising all your data, rather than having it spread out across various platforms throughout your business. Effective search tools will enable you to comply with those Subject Access Requests in a timely manner, and discard appropriate data as and when necessary, to avoid being pulled up by the regulator.
Whilst a base system that improves efficiency across the board will enable firms to better comply with GDPR, there are more specific solutions available, built in a more bespoke manner particularly for this area of compliance.
Workflow systems dedicated to Subject Access Requests, or the individual rights of users as established by GDPR, can maximise efficiency even further, and ensure you’re doing everything you can to save money for your business.
Likewise, there is more you can (and should) be doing to reduce your risk against cyber attacks than simply adhering to GDPR. And the government’s report acknowledged as much. Many SMEs do not have cyber security policies in place and have not engaged in any formal cyber security training.
So when you do implement those systems and processes that will allow you to comply with GDPR, and therefore potentially save on costs, it’s essential firms look into what else they can be doing to ensure all their data is safe. It keeps the regulator happy, and it keeps your clients happy.