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Investor blog

A quarter of marketers haven’t even heard of GDPR

by Nortal HQ, June 9, 2017

Only 20% of sales and marketing managers in Sweden know how to turn the European Union’s new General Data Protection Regulation’s compliance costs into opportunities, a recent Nortal survey in Sweden shows.

 “We were surprised to find that only one fifth of sales and marketing managers have a good grasp of what GDPR means,” said Helen Agering, head of the Revenue Science unit at Nortal. “Even more surprisingly, 25% had never even heard of GDPR, which will be enforced in less than a year.”

GDPR will change that, giving individuals more power over how and to what extent their data is being processed.

“For instance, customers will have the right to get a full overview of the data they have provided about themselves,” explained Agering. “Customers will have the right to demand their data to be handed over or, in some cases, even deleted. Companies must also be able to show how they protect the personal data they handle.”

This means companies need a full overview of the kind of personal data they have about individuals, and they must review their routines and processes for managing customer information. This relates to everything from e-mail addresses to pictures and social security numbers, and any other form of information that can be paired with an individual.

“But GDPR also means great opportunities,” Agering assured. “A well-functioning customer data management process will, by extension, create stronger customer relationships. Additionally, it will improve communication, with the right messages going to the right customers at the right time; as GDPR forces companies to know where personal data is saved and how, data security will also improve.”

A well-functioning customer data management process will, by extension, create stronger customer relationships.

Nortal can help any organization achieve top-level GDPR-compliance by combining unified data lake technologies with predictive analytics. A big data-based approach consolidates, cleans and enriches your data compared to the operationally expensive, IT-silo or legal mitigation approaches to risk management. “We can help you understand what your next business model needs to be for the greatest success,” Agering said.

Just a few weeks ago, Nortal’s team PSII participated in the largest hackathon in the Baltic countries, Baltic Open & Big Data 2017 in Tallinn. The team created a technical solution that scans and identifies personal data from public registers.

In the course of analyzing different public document registers in Estonia and more than 10,000 documents, the team was able to identify ordinary personal data (such as the names and personal identification codes) as well as sensitive personal data. Due to the sensitive nature of the data, the team disabled the prototype scanner and contacted the Data Protection Inspectorate in order to map the situation and find a solution to help the authorities to remove such data.

Although they only analyzed Estonian registers, it is likely the situation is not better in other European countries. Nortal uses a similar approach to help organizations find what kind of data is stored where and how to stop leaks.

Read more about how to get on the road to GDPR compliance from our recent white paper.

Helen Agering

Helen Agering

Helen Agering worked as Head of Revenue Science division at Nortal. If you have questions about her work or our Revenue Science offering, please get in touch via email.