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Protect your customer data and comply with the GDPR using a CRM

With the intention of both bolstering and consolidating data protection for all individuals within the EU, the European Parliament intends to introduce to all EU States the General Data Protection Regulation (EU2016/679 (GDPR). The UK Parliament has confirmed that, despite the decision to leave the EU, the introduction of the Regulation will commence as planned on 25 May 2018.

From the European Commission’s initial proposal in 2012, the implementation of the Regulation has proceeded at a slow but steady pace due to the considerable complexities, the multitude anxieties and different agendas between the 28 member States. However, such slow progress has had the advantage whereby the European Commission will have had an ample time frame of six years to ensure that such anxieties and concerns by individual member States have been rigorously debated, resolved and finally refined within a legal framework.

What is the GDPR?

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a new set of data security regulations that will affect any organisation that stores, handles or processes EU Personally Identifiable Information (i.e. any data that could potentially identify a specific individual) regardless of where the organisation is based in the world.

Historically, each EU State was responsible for their own data protection Laws and, where EU Directives have been issued, individual countries cherry-picked the parts they were happy to implement while ignoring those parts that were not seen to be in their best interests. All will change within the whole EU with the full introduction of the GDPR as every EU member will be bound by the same Regulations, thus creating, for the first time ever, an equality of data protection for the whole EU.

The Regulation will require that every company provide effective collaboration that they are operating within the Regulations and that they are adequately handling and protecting any personal data they hold. Heavy fines will be imposed upon those companies (up to 4% of global annual turnover, or €20,000,000.00, whichever is the higher.)

With the extra administration involved in this process, many companies may need to consider a more robust management tool with which to manage their GDPR obligations. An effective strategy for this aim would be the introduction of an effective CRM application which could manage your GDPR obligations with ease.

A CRM application can help manage your GDPR data as well as keep your compliance of the Regulation to the highest standards by:

Consent — A CRM application can provide multi point consent tracking, including logging the times and dates of any form of communication (telephone recordings, email tracking, online forms) with customers. Information related to each record, including consent, can be stored in one single, easily accessible place in turn making data retrieval as evidence that you are compliant with GDPR very much more efficient and timely when a Data Protection Officer requires proof of your compliance.

Storage — An efficient CRM application will store and manage data more securely as CRMs usually come equipped with a variety of security measures and anti-hacking tools. Multi-levels of restricted access can be implemented via the use of usernames and passwords.

Accuracy — A CRM application also helps improve all-round accuracy across all aspects of your data. Data validation applications such as address verification or email validation can be used at the point of collection. These processes ensure you maintain accurate user records which are managed consistently using a central database. There is no room for complacency or mistakes when the GDPR is implemented

Integrity and Confidentiality — With confidentiality being one of the key drivers of the GDPR, it is extremely important that you have a system in place to store and safeguard personal data. A CRM application protects sensitive or confidential information by the use of passwords and data encryption. Data will also be updated on a more regular basis to help maintain its integrity.

Access Request and Right to be Forgotten - This fundamental right could take significant effort and resources, spending time searching through a number of different locations for all the correct information. Conversely, a CRM application will allow you access to information within an instant. It also enables the deletion of data using the one centrally stored database rather than having to go through various systems or files in order to find or delete data. These type of CRM features will unquestionably save you time and money as well as eliminating the possibility of errors and risking a hefty fine.

Safeguard Against Data Breeches — Restricted access, passwords and data encryption are all features readily available in most CRM applications. A CRM is a safe and secure place to store your data. It’s a necessity for anyone looking to effectively manage customer data with ease.

SalesAgility’s SuiteCRM is an application that is most adept with the management of data and those processes required by General Data Protection Regulation.

Should you require a more detailed overview of GDPR, please download our comprehensive GDPR White Paper which is freely available. If you require any further information on how a CRM application can help with the GDPR then please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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