The General Data Protection Regulation, commonly known as GDPR, has been said to be one of the EU’s greatest achievements in the last few years. GDPR is a term you may have seen regularly float about online or in your emails, often after phrases like “Data Protection”. While GDPR has been around a long time, there is still a lot of confusion on what GDPR is and why it is now the current legislation. 

What is GDPR?

GDPR is a set of legal rules put in place to help protect the data of all 28 members of the European Union. These set of rules are now considered to be the world’s strongest data protection rules and are a leading example in data protection. The laws are designed to protect and enforce the personal rights civilians have over their personal data.

GDPR is designed to alter how businesses and public sector organisations handle the information of their customers, and allow the individual to have more power over their personal information.

History of GDPR

While GDPR has only popped into full effect since May 2018, it has been pushed by the EU since 2010. The GDPR was also made to replace ‘The European Data Protection Directive’ which was enforced in 1995. This Protection Directive was considered an essential element of EU privacy and human rights. At the time the internet was still in its infancy period. The potential issues and uses of data were not known at this time.

Here we can clearly see the time line of the General Data Protection Regulation.

Why is GDPR important?

The brand new GDPR laws are more detailed, precise and fit to tackle modern day data issues in comparison to the previous legislation. GDPR has been designed to take into account the current challenges in the evolving digital world. It will enforce companies to provide further security measures in their own data protection schemes, as well as ensure that sufficient data processing agreements are in place.

Overall, GDPR is very important. It will aid the protection of European data rights and will clarify what processes companies possessing personal data must do to safeguard these rights.

Whilst GDPR is in full effect to help protect civilian’s rights and data, it does not mean that you as a company or individual are completely safe from cybercrime or breaches in your private information. You can read some simple tips on how to protect your personal data, put together by Servca, in this article HERE.

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