Lawyers in the US know about the EU GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) “in the same way that a child knows about the boogeyman,” the National Law Journal recently claimed. “They know it’s out there, and they know it’s scary – but when you get down to specifics, things get hazy fast.”
Part of the problem is that too few people in the US realize the Regulation might apply to them. Although it’s an EU legislation, the GDPR’s scope includes any organization that handles EU residents’ personal data, so any US organization that collects or processes such information must comply.
As well as explaining the common challenges with GDPR compliance, The National Law Journal also discusses the ways legal professionals can benefit from the introduction of the Regulation.
Organizations will need law firms’ help
According to the National Law Journal, the complexities of the GDPR and the threat of legal action will lead to ongoing need for legal advice. The past year has already seen many organizations turn to law firms for help interpreting the Regulation, but that is probably only the beginning.
Many organizations still haven’t achieved compliance – either because they’ve only recently learned that the GDPR applies to them or because they are skeptical about the application of the Regulation. As the Regulation becomes more prominent, something that will no doubt be sparked by the first reported cases of GDPR breaches, more organizations will be looking for advice on how to comply.
Compliance isn’t a one-off event either. “Clients will need ongoing compliance advice to account for emerging technologies and data privacy processes. Implementing the new rules is not just a matter of flipping a switch. Instead, developing a working regulatory system – and advising clients on how to respond to it – will be an evolutionary process,” writes the National Law Journal.
GDPR compliance checklist
Starting your GDPR compliance project can be daunting. There are many, many requirements, and each contains its own long list of sub-requirements. However, once you break these requirements down into manageable chunks, compliance doesn’t seem quite so impossible.
You can see this for yourself with our GDPR compliance checklist. This eight-step guide shows you how to tackle compliance one problem at a time. At each step, we list the tasks you need to complete and recommend books, tools, or services to help you complete that task.
For more advice on how to tackle GDPR compliance, take a look at our webinar: The first steps towards GDPR compliance.