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Why data sovereignty is the only truly safe path to avoid Privacy Shield turmoil

Privacy is not just a legal obligation, it is an ethical commitment and a demonstration that you care about your customers’ privacy as much as they do. Many people will be surprised to hear that although the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) took effect on May 25, many companies are not yet GDPR-compliant. The regulation  requires organisations to comply, and our Information Commissioner has signalled that  organisations need to be actively continuing efforts to achieve (and maintain) compliance. Of course, those organisations that have an ethical commitment to privacy and that wish to demonstrate that they care about their customers’ privacy as much as they do, will be among the cohort that are already compliant. And they will do everything in their power to remain compliant. Potential fines for violating the GDPR are significant. They include up to four percent of an organisations’ annual profits or €20 million (approximately $23 million) - whichever is greater. The fines are not the only thing to worry about though. The Information Commissioner’s office (ICO) can also revoke an organisations’ right to process data, a sanction that could be crippling. And then there is the reputational damage associated with any data breach. Ethical, customer-centric organisations will be acutely aware of customer opinion and loyalty, and this will be foremost in the minds – far ahead of the actual fines.

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