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Data Privacy Regulations and Your Small Business

Tristate Business Insurance Blog

24 January 2019 Bookmark and Share

Tristate Business Insurance - VA, MD, DC

Greetings from your friends at TriState Business Insurance serving all of Virginia, Maryland, and DC.  Today we're going to discuss one of the singular biggest risk to small business owners: Data Privacy Regulations. 

Are you and your small business read into the nation's new data privacy laws and are you compliant?  Large enterprises with IT staffs in large part are.  But it is the small business owners across the country who in large measure are not read in and compliant.  This subjects you and your business to potentially significant business risk. with the right combination of privacy protection insurance coverage and common sense data privacy policy enactment within your company, you and your company can rest easy. Here are a few pointers on minimizing risks and limiting the costs of events like breaches, hacks, and cyberextortion.

The State of U.S. Data Privacy Regulations

Even with widespread public adoption of data technology, the U.S. lacks a comprehensive federal privacy framework. This doesn't mean, however, that your growing enterprise can play things fast and loose when it comes to safeguarding personal information. In the absence of one universal law, firms are instead subject to a host of different statutes. Your compliance burdens are partially dependent on what field you specialize in. For example, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or HIPAA, includes strict rules regarding the storage, transmission, sharing, and handling of patient data. HIPAA impacts everyone from private practices and clinics to the insurers and medical records software providers they do business with.

The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act, or COPPA, covers activities that involve collecting data from kids under the age of 13. This means it can impact a large number of companies whose users include minors. The FTC hasn't been shy about fining businesses that fail to follow COPPA rules, such as ensuring that children have parental consent before using websites and posting age-specific privacy policies.

Thanks to the Judicial Redress Act of 2015, citizens of certain covered foreign nations have the right to bring lawsuits against U.S. companies that don't protect their information as specified by the Privacy Act of 1974. This law might affect you if you do business with partners from overseas or want to expand your product sales to new territories.

The Most Common Small Business violation of U.S. Data Privacy Regulations -- Credit Card Processing Violations

If you and your business process credit card transactions on line, you must secure the transaction via secure socket layer protection (or SSL).  This is the easiest breach of data privacy law to identify by the federal government.  You simply can't afford to allow this vulnerability within your business model.  Smart consumers today can easily spot this vulnerability with damning consequence upon your professional reputation.  Plus, it is just not right.  You would not want your financial data placed at risk at the hands of others.  We insure IT management small business owners across Maryland, Virginia, and DC.  Between us (your independent insurance agents) and our network that we can reach out to on your behalf, your path to full and confident data privacy regulation compliance is just a phone call away.  Contact us!

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