We will be seeing the arrival of GDPR in May 2018 and with just over 270 days to go, event companies need to ensure they have the knowledge they need to oblige to this legislation. However, most event companies know little to nothing about it.
A large amount of businesses in the events industry are unprepared for the arrival of General Data Protection Regulation next May; one in five senior executives have little or no idea about GDPR and its impact.
According to Alfresco and AIIM, almost half of respondents reported GDPR content for their business isn’t kept within the business itself but third parties, increasing the risk of hacks. A further 16% admitted internal or HR incidents were the cause of data loss because of staff’s negligence to data as oppose to external hacking being responsible.
How Can Your Business Protect its data from Hackers?
A simple way to do this is to think about where your data is collected, processed and stored. This will allow you to identify vulnerable areas along the data’s journey. Secondly, think about the nature of the data. Is it something likely to be attractive to a prospective hacker? This should define the level of protection the data is given. Understanding your network is also crucial. Figuring out where your data is hosted and establishing a process for responding to unusual behaviour on your network is critical.
With the legislation coming to effect soon, protecting data as an events company should be a top priority to continue to develop an engaging audience for conferences, exhibitions, webinars etc.
Although the laws of GDPR come from the EU, businesses across the world, like the Middle East and Singapore, will almost certainly apply it to their own strategy. Those organisations that can become compliant will find themselves operating a significantly leaner, more competitive organisation to their counterparts that aren’t.
If a company fails to comply, the size of the fine could be up to 4 per cent their global turnover (for the previous year) or €20million (£18million) -whichever is the higher- for the most serious of breaches, or 2 per cent/ €10 million (£9million) for administrative errors such as not completing – or even just not documenting -privacy impact assessments.
To avoid this fine, we suggest for businesses in the events industry to identify what content comes under the legislation, then apply the appropriate measures to manage this and develop a clear understanding of what businesses are required to do with the movement of data internally and externally to ensure it is protected.
Christina Adesina, founder and CEO of The SellFluent Group, is a seasoned events and sales professional with over 10+ years of international experience and a proven track record of directing sales teams to help deliver multiple, high-level B2B events that surpass performance targets. Whilst working on many international events she’s had several conversations with stakeholders who struggled to acquire audience participation from Europe and the United States when they held their own local events in their respective countries. SellFluent was created to help drive audience participation from the United States and Europe. The company is now driving audience and stakeholder participation across all continents by delivering targeted telemarketing campaigns by our team of experienced UK staff.