What is GDPR? A General Data Protection Regulation Overview

By Sam Thomas | 18th May 2017 | 14 min read

The UK is soon to see the biggest changes to how we manage and store data since 1998, but what is GDPR and how will it affect you and your business?

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a new legal framework to replace the existing Data Protection Act 1998. There are many similarities between the two, however GDPR is intended to bring uniformity to how data is handled across the EU.

When will it begin?

GDPR will apply in the UK from May 25th 2018. This is the date from which businesses in the UK will have to adhere to GDPR, and prove it if asked to do so by the Information Commissioners Office.

How will Brexit affect GDPR?

Put simply, it won’t – at least not straight away. The UK was heavily involved in the planning and creation of GDPR, and the Government has confirmed the Brexit vote won’t affect its implementation.

GDPR will be included in the Great Repeal Bill, where the UK adopts all of the EU laws and regulations currently in force and will, over time, amend and repeal those it deems not necessary. It’s highly likely that due to the UK’s involvement in the creation of GDPR, we will simply re-name the regulation to something more in line with the naming conventions of our laws.

It’s worth noting that regardless of what the UK chooses to do, if you provide products or services to citizens of the EU, even after Brexit, you will still be required to adhere to GDPR.

What happens if there’s a breach?

GDPR will introduce a responsibility on all businesses to report any breach to the relevant authority within 72 hours of the breach occurring. In the UK, this would be to the Information Commissioners Office (ICO).

What’s my next step?

It’s important to quickly understand what’s required of you as soon as possible. There are currently two ways we can help your business understand GDPR.

1. Join a training course

‘An Introduction to General Data Protection Regulation’ is a brand new training course aims to highlight the key issues that might affect you as a business and to help you understand the next steps for your business. The course, which is delivered online, will give you an understanding of exactly how you will be affected by GDPR upon its introduction, as well as what you should be doing to prepare.

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2. The IRIS Payroll & HR Online Conference

Be sure to join us on Thursday 8th June for the first IRIS Payroll & HR Online Conference. We’ll be looking at a range of recent legislative changes, including a focus on GDPR.

The conference is completely free to attend from the comfort of your home or office. Additionally, even if you’re busy on the day, be sure to register to receive a handy recording of the conference afterwards.

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