Personal Privacy Laws and Your Small Business

In the course of running a business, your company collects a lot of details about you. Certain information may be classified as sensitive, which is a type of data that gets extra protection under privacy law. The laws differ from country to country, and so are the types of data that are considered to be personal.

Different privacy laws define sensitive data in different ways however, typically it covers things like genetic data and racial background and sexual orientation, gender identity and religious beliefs. It may also include the social security number of an individual or home address, telephone number, or any other information that could be used to identify them in a way. It can also include biometric information, such as fingerprints or electronic signatures.

The laws governing personal information will differ by location and industry, but it's essential for businesses to know what kinds of data they are required to protect. Most of these laws require that you outline and agree to your policies as part of conducting business.

It's a great idea to do an inventory of the personal information that your company holds. This will help you ensure that you're in compliance. This means more than looking over what's stored in file cabinets, and looking for data saved on mobile devices, laptops, laptops, flash drives at home, computers or digital copiers. You'll be shocked by how much personal information that your company has.

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