How Brexit Will Affect Data Privacy Issues

The vote has been decided, and Brexit is in our future. There have already been countless think pieces and articles devoted to all the different effects Brexit might possibly have on just about every industry and sector. Some we can say will almost certainly come to pass, while others are simply conjecture. But we’d like to take some time to fill you in on what may happen with data privacy issues after Brexit. Should you be worried, and what are your options?

The current regulations regarding data protection are based on laws written in 1995. It therefore makes sense that these regulations, named the Data Protection Act, would need some updating. So the EU has decided to update and refresh those regulations, resulting in the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The EU will apply the GDPR on 25 May 2018. It’s quite possible that the UK will still be in the EU at that point, so it would be wise to work on meeting the requirements of the GDPR.

But whether or not the UK is still part of the EU then, you’re going to need to prepare for the changes that the GDPR will bring. That’s because it doesn’t matter where your company is based, or who works for it. What matters is whose data you’re handling. If the data is coming from an individual in the EU, then the applicability of the GDPR will be triggered.

So regardless of whether your company is based in the UK or in the EU, chances are that you’re going to be collecting the data of some person or business in a member state of the EU. In fact, you probably already are. That means there’s really no excuse for not bringing your data privacy into compliance with the GDPR before it goes into effect.

But even if the UK decides to forgo the GDPR after leaving the EU, you’ll still be looking at a fairly similar set of regulations in the UK. That’s because the EU currently requires that countries where data is transferred have binding corporate rules, model clauses, or certification from the EU that the country has adequate data privacy regulations.

And because UK and European trade and finances are so interconnected, it will be necessary for the UK to provide laws of its own that satisfy the certification requirements of the EU.

All of this basically means that a “wait and see” approach to your data collection is probably not the best way to go. Brexit will change a good many things in the UK, but the flow of data isn’t going away, and the regulations on it are set to tighten. Does your company have a roadmap for bringing your IT department into compliance with the new regulations? If you’re still unsure what your next move should be, then contact 64TEQ today. We offer IT solutions and consulting services that can ease the transition for your business.