Data Privacy vs Data Security | What Is The Difference?

Data Privacy vs Data Security | What Is The Difference?

Since the GDPR was introduced, many businesses have been forced to assess their data processes and one misconception we come across time and time again, is that data privacy and data security are the same thing. Did you think that too? Well, we’re here to assure you, they’re not, and here’s why. 

Data Privacy 

Data privacy focuses on the proper handling, processing, storage and usage of personal information, ensuring it is treated both transparently and ethically. The most common examples of data privacy concerns are, having a record of processing activities i.e. who handled what, how and when, managing contracts and policies, applying governing regulations or laws such as GDPR, third-party management and asset inventory. 

Data Security 

Data security is focused on protecting personal information from any unauthorized third-party access, malicious attacks or the exploitation of data. Data security enables data privacy as it is set up to protect where and how data is held. Data security ensures the integrity, confidentiality and availability of data, meaning it is only accessible to authorized personnel. 

It is true that both data privacy and security are very important especially in recent years with advancements in data processing and in the methods used to exploit such data. Because of

this, a lens has been cast over all companies that hold the data of EU citizens, and penalties are enforced should businesses, no matter their size, not uphold the GDPR. 

Can you have data privacy without data security? Not really, no. Data security is a means through which you can ensure data privacy, and for data privacy to be effectively implemented, it is necessary to have data security. So both must be present for a company to be GDPR compliant. 

How to Manage your Data Privacy and Data Security 

We have covered data privacy and security, and now you want to know how to implement and manage it, right? Well, that’s where we come in. In short data protection and security requires the following: 

  • Analysis to understand the risks your business is facing, as well as the context, resources, and critical functions 
  • Adoption of technical and organizational measures to mitigate risks 
  • Implementation of activities to identify a cybersecurity event 
  • Creation of internal processes and recovery plans containing strategies to address stakeholders, data subjects, and data protection authorities 
  • Actioning plans and processes via simulations to see if they work in a real-life situation
  • Assessment of third parties and adoption of contractual measures such as audits.

Within each of these functions, you will have several activities such as policy development, access control, and training to carry out as well as data mapping and GAP analysis. 

To ensure your data is handled correctly you could employ a Data Protection Officer (DPO), however it is much more costly to a business to hire someone full-time than it is to outsource to privacy experts such as Apex. At Apex we can provide united privacy and security services, giving your company access to a diverse team of certified professionals as well as a more cost effective and succinct service. 

Still thinking, ‘OK but why is it important to protect customer information?’ Well, not only will it ensure you comply and avoid fines of up to €20 million or 4% of turnover, it will also create a sense of trust and security amongst your stakeholders. Having strong data privacy and data security processes, will elevate your brand and produce an ROI, when implemented correctly. Try to think of these regulations as a tool, not a hindrance. 

Want to know more about how you can get started and manage your data correctly? Get in touch with us today for a free consultation.

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