General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a legal structure established by the European Union (EU) to guide the accumulation, processing, and preservation of personal data from EU residents. Enforced in May 2018, the GDPR, which supersedes the 1995 EU Data Protection Directive, is one of the most stringent data protection laws globally. It broadens the privacy rights of EU citizens and imposes new requirements on organizations that handle, track, or market EU personal data.
The main aim of the GDPR is to give individuals more power and enhance their control over their personal information. It instills multiple rights for individuals, such as the privilege to access and understand where and for what reason their personal data is being processed, the rights to correction and deletion of data, and the right to limit or object to their personal data’s processing. “Data Protection by Design and by Default,” a concept introduced by the GDPR, ensures that organizations incorporate data protection into their data processing actions.
Adherence to GDPR is crucial for businesses dealing with EU citizens’ data or operating within the EU. Failure to comply could result in substantial penalties, with fines potentially reaching €20 million or 4% of an organization’s global annual turnover, whichever is greater. As a result, GDPR has significantly influenced businesses’ methods for collecting, storing, safeguarding, and sharing personal data, prompting them to deploy more efficient data protection practices, making it a key regulation in today’s world where data plays a critical role.