4 Clever Tactics to Ace Your Company’s Privacy Management (2022 Guide)

Tom Orbach
7
min read

Handling data privacy in your company may feel like a never-ending battle.

And without proven best practices and intelligent tools, you can quickly find yourself destined for burnout. Privacy compliance can be a bottleneck, and building your company’s privacy program can be frustrating. If you’re determined to avoid this fate, then read on. 

Data Privacy Tactics

In today's fast-paced world, it's more important than ever to be productive. But with so many regulations to take care of and privacy challenges to overcome, it can be hard to stay organized. That's where clever tactics come in. <hl>By making a few simple changes to the way you manage privacy at your organization, you can supercharge your business growth.<hl>

We’ll discuss seven innovative methods to ease your challenges in privacy compliance — all with a strong focus on how to leverage technological solutions to get you from A to B. It’s time to empower you to make your job easier and spend less time on privacy operations. 

Ready?

Tactic #1: Do your data mapping first

The Challenge:

In most companies, finding out what services, tools, and software employees use in their day-to-day work is done by asking these employees to describe them. This time-demanding way isn’t efficient for anyone (neither you nor your teammates), and it’s estimated that it only covers 20-30% of your company’s data sources. In addition, it requires manual updates every few months and a lot of spreadsheets (yikes!). 

The Tactic:

“Data mapping” is the first step (and most critical task) toward building a Privacy Program in any organization, even though some privacy professionals overlook its importance. Any business, whether it is B2C, B2B, or any size, should discover where its (users') data is stored — and get it right before anything else.

When done correctly, data mapping gives you exactly that. It lets you identify what systems each employee is using and determine which of them contain data and PII. When you have an accurate map of your company’s data sources, everything else is so much easier: Handling privacy requests (DSR/DSAR), generating ROPA, discovering PII, and almost any other privacy-related task you may think of.

Today, there are smart tools that can automatically create a data map of your organization and even maintain the map and update it regularly. Some of them can uncover up to 100% of your company’s data sources by simply logging in with your work email (no coding required at all), which will enable you to have an inventory of all the non-occasional personal data you’re processing — without working too hard on building it. <hl>You'll be surprised to discover some of these hidden data sources, guaranteed.<hl>

This tactic is also helpful when it comes to data minimization. To keep a lean approach by holding and processing the minimum amount of data possible, it’s crucial to know for sure where your company currently holds that data, and delete it if needed. Only tools that leverage AI may uncover the true amount of data sources used by employees.

Tactic #2: Automate everything

The Challenge:

Handling a data privacy request from a user (deletion, copy, access, etc) usually goes like this: You receive the request, then you have to verify the user, go through every data source that may include the PII of that particular user, complete the required action (deletion/copy), and reply with the same repetitive message to close the request. It seems pretty straightforward, doesn't it? 

But when you do it manually, time and time again, it wastes a lot of precious time and can become exhausting. And if you’re receiving dozens or hundreds of requests per month — this can become overwhelming, leaving you with a mess <hl>taking up precious resources that you could put elsewhere.<hl>

The Tactic:

Instead of doing it manually, modern businesses use integrations with their data sources to automate privacy request facilitation. In other words: you can create a fully (or semi, depending on what you prefer) automated process to handle privacy requests from start to finish, without (barely) any human involvement. Businesses can take advantage of dedicated platforms to accomplish this.

The beauty of this kind of platform is that you can create an automatic workflow that will trigger once a new privacy request has been received and perform the required action for users. In addition, it also sends responses of fulfillment back to those who filed them!

Tactic #3: Get “built-in” context with each privacy request

This tip is relatively simple.

The Challenge:

When receiving a data privacy request, it can be difficult and time-consuming to identify and validate the user and their data right request, with often time needing to go back and forth between your company and the user 

The Tactic:

Instead of having to look up and ask for extra information to identify and validate the users and their requests, make sure every privacy request is sent with the needed information (such as who is the user exactly and what was your latest interaction with them). 

Tactic #4: Use templates & privacy forms to save time

The Challenge:

Think about it. Receiving privacy requests from your users in a free-form text (i.e., actual emails to privacy@yourcompany.com or dpo@yourcompany.com) can be very inefficient, and messy.  Each user desires the same outcome (deletion/copy of their data), but they all write differently, and you will often have to go back and forth to identify and validate the request.

And even after you’re done handling the request, the textual challenge still persists. Once you’re done handling each data privacy request, you must reply to the user. Whether you need to confirm that their personal data has been deleted, send them a copy of their data, or even reject their request — you usually reply with the same text with some minor adjustments. That’s time-wasting.

The Tactic:

First, capture structured requests to eliminate the free-text challenge: Create a dedicated form to streamline your users’ requests. By asking your users to fill out this form, you can ensure you gather all the information necessary to process their requests.  If you incorporate a structured form and put a link to it in your privacy policy (instead of the usual email addresses) — you can elevate your privacy game.

Second, for replying to your users (after handling the request), all you have to do is to create a canned response, or a saved template, with variables (like the user’s name or address) that could be auto-filled in the text. As explained earlier, you can also include the automatic reply in your workflow if you’re using an automated process using these platforms. <hl>You will not have to type up a single response afterward!<hl>

Here are some great response templates that you can copy and paste for your business.

Why are these tactics essential for your business?

Since the GDPR, CCPA, and many other regulations have emerged, many businesses face the challenge of adapting themselves to the new requirements. The tactics discussed in this article should help take away some of these challenges — and <hl>they even come with some extra benefits (aside from compliance)<hl>:

  1. Save costs: Let’s bust a myth: You don’t have to use 6-figures-per-year software solutions to better manage your users’ data privacy. Using the methods the experts are practicing, as demonstrated below, you can save a lot of annual costs.
  2. Increase efficiency: No more repetitive and manual work when handling privacy requests after implementing these tactics. You will feel like an orchestra conductor, controlling the automatic workflows on the fly rather than wasting time with manual work.
  3. Save time: Once you remove the efficiency obstacle, it will significantly reduce the total time you spend handling privacy requests.
  4. Improve agility: These tactics allow you to streamline your data privacy practices while making room for innovation and fast change.
  5. Increase competitive advantage: Consumers trust companies that collect and use personal data responsibly, whether you like it or not. These consumers may even choose you over your competitor just because of how you handle their personal data. Because of that, the methods we’ve shared in this article may also boost your business growth and improve your brand trust and loyalty in the eyes of your users.

Whether you’re a small startup, a big organization, or an enterprise, there’s no better time to get started with these tactics than now. Who can refuse to save precious resources every week?

Ready to take your privacy operations to the next level? Get started with Mine PrivacyOps today.