The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has been in effect since 2018 and continues to impact corporate legal teams in the UK. The GDPR is an EU regulation that requires organizations to protect the personal data and privacy of their customers and employees. As a result, many corporate legal teams have had to make changes to their processes and policies in order to remain compliant with the new regulations.
Here’s a look at how the GDPR has impacted corporate legal teams in the UK since its introduction.
Increased Workload for Corporate Legal Teams
The introduction of GDPR has created an increase in workload for many corporate legal teams. Companies must keep detailed records of all customer interactions, including any data requests or complaints they receive from customers. To ensure compliance, legal teams must take extra precautions when it comes to data security and privacy issues. Perhaps most importantly, they must be prepared to take action quickly if any serious violations of the GDPR are discovered.
In addition to these requirements, companies must conduct regular data protection impact assessments (DPIAs) to help identify potential risks associated with handling customer data, such as inadequate security measures or illegal processing activities. Corporate legal teams must be extra vigilant when identifying and mitigating these risks on an ongoing basis, which is as time-consuming as it is important.
To learn about the trends that will impact in-house legal (and how they spend their time) in 2023, read this article from LinkSquares’ Chief Legal Officer, Tim Parilla. He covers the role of legal tech, legal ops, and more.
New Challenges for Compliance Officers
A major challenge that corporate legal teams have faced since the introduction of the GDPR is finding qualified compliance officers who understand local laws, international regulations, and industry-specific guidelines.
In addition to having knowledge about local laws, compliance officers must stay up-to-date on changes and updates made to international regulations, such as those mandated by the European Union’s GDPR regulation. This is difficult for companies (especially during uncertain economic times) because it requires additional training and resources that may not always be available within existing budgets or staff capacities.
To look at the glass half-full, it’s also a great area to shine and stand out as a new in-house professional. Stay in-the-know and be that a source of truth within your organization. Check out this episode of Cockpit Counsel with Danielle Maglente, General Counsel at Plum Voice, to hear about her compliance-focused career path and how she’s tackling compliance priorities at her company.
There have been significant changes to how corporate legal teams operate due to new regulations, like the GDPR. Not only do these regulations require companies to handle customer data more securely than before, but they also create additional work for compliance officers. Looking ahead into 2023, these regulations will continue to evolve, bringing additional challenges and opportunities for growth.
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