What is Regulatory Compliance?

InfogixJanuary 18, 2021

White Paper: Enabling GDPR Compliance through a Data Governance Framework.

No matter the industry, local, state and national government agencies require businesses worldwide to comply with regulations, laws and policies. Legislative bodies and regulatory agencies typically oversee compliance and administer fines and other sanctions for noncompliance.

For example, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is responsible for regulating how businesses can safely dispose of waste. Other government agencies like the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ensure food and beverage companies comply with food safety standards. And the Federal Trade Commission (FTA) enforces antitrust laws to protect customers from deceptive practices in commerce.

As we transitioned to the digital age, where the economy centers around information technology, new regulations that focus on data privacy and regulatory compliance started creating headaches for many businesses.

Understanding the Evolution of Data Privacy Regulations

The first data protection law arose in Sweden in 1973. Known as the Data Act, the regulation requires a license from the Swedish Data Protection Authority to work with data systems that handle personal information.

In the United States, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulates the use of customer proprietary network information (CPNI). For example, in 1996, the FCC enacted the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), establishing procedures to access private health information.

In 2001, Canada implemented the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA). PIPEDA governs the collection, use and disclosure of personal information to recognize the right of individual privacy concerning personal information.

There are also newer, stricter laws regulating how businesses can gather, store and use your data. In the European Union (EU), there’s the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR.) GDPR requires companies operating in Europe to implement rigorous data privacy standards to address how companies can transfer and use personal data. Additionally, the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (CCPA) went into effect this year, posing GDPR like requirements on businesses.

Now that organizations are required by law to identify, classify and document any personal information, they must examine their data management processes through the lens of data privacy and regulatory compliance.

How to Manage Data for Regulatory Compliance

The processing of personal information occurs throughout an organization’s data supply chain. Sensitive customer information passes through multiple processes, systems and uses, exposing it to potential privacy violations. Consequently, businesses must develop a data management strategy to ensure compliance and meet modern data privacy demands.

Properly managing data to ensure regulatory compliance requires organizations to eliminate siloed data tasks. Instead, combining enterprise data governance, data quality, data catalog and data lineage initiatives, businesses can verify, reconcile and track data.

As a result, companies identify personal data, assure its quality, catalog the information, monitor the location, categorize sensitive information, authorize access rights and implement usage restrictions.

An integrated tool also streamlines the process. With data monitoring and audit controls to track required actions, security protocols and retention policies, businesses provide automatic alerts for potential violations to ensure compliance. Automated data lineage technologies also analyze the entire data environment to proactively identify hidden personal information before compliance infractions arise.

By building an all-encompassing data management program and incorporating a comprehensive tool, organizations can easily handle complex regulatory requirements.

Are you looking for more information on regulatory compliance and GDPR? Download our white paper, Enabling GDPR Compliance through a Data Governance Framework.

For additional resources on regulatory compliance, read searchcompliance.techtarget.com’s regulatory compliance definition.

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White Paper: Enabling GDPR Compliance through a Data Governance Framework.