A Quick Guide to Data Privacy: Definitions & Legislation

A comprehensive guide on data privacy definitions, laws, and regulations. What is data privacy and how can you protect your data?

Data Privacy Guide laws legislations

By definition, data privacy is the act that ensures that the data shared by customers or users is only used for its intended purpose and nothing else. It is a field of data protection related to the proper management of sensitive data, including personal data and other confidential information such as financial data, and protecting the privacy of the data.

In today's world, where data is growing every second, privacy is an increasing topic of study and analysis. Security develops into an essential aspect in protecting the data from threats and helps determine what stored data can be shared. If you are looking for an easy-to-understand data privacy definition or data privacy explanation, you have reached the right place.

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Data privacy deals with features of the control process regarding sharing data with third parties, how and where the data is stored, and the exact regulations that apply. Information and data privacy is the right to control how data is collected and used by entities.

Many people consider data privacy to be the most critical consumer protection issue in today's information age. One factor contributing to this is the constantly evolving technologies and technological sophistication and how it impacts data collection.

This article is essentially a data privacy guide highlighting some essential points regarding data protection and privacy.

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Why is data privacy important today?

Data privacy is a fundamental human right where no one can take your data without your knowledge, and data protection laws exist to safeguard this exactly right. Data privacy is vital for individuals to be more willing to engage online; they must trust that their personal data will be handled with care and confidentiality.

Furthermore, businesses use data protection and privacy to show their users that they can be trusted with their data. As a result, it will not be misused because data can be misused in many ways if it is not kept private. In the case of individuals, misuse of data can be harmful and disastrous. For businesses, the outcomes can cause irreversible harm to their reputation and have financial consequences.

Data Privacy confidentiality security

Data privacy laws and rules

Data privacy laws such as the United States of America's Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act or HIPAA, for short, govern definite types of data. Other examples like the ECPA range government restraints on wiretaps, including transmissions and broadcast of electronic data.

In addition to other privacy laws, the United States encounters an aggressive push towards getting privacy legislation at the state level. This is because the government has not been able to find a consensus on how to legislate it clearly and in a well-defined manner.

Of course, businesses would rather prefer to obey one single federal standard instead of hiring an attorney to scrutinize every single decree with which they must comply. This was just in the United States. The European Union's General Data Protection Regulation gives its citizens new control over their data and their interactions with companies and businesses.

The bottom line is that these laws make people more likely to do business with businesses that understand their obligations under consumer data privacy laws. A business that demonstrates a good understanding of data privacy principles is often seen as a leader in its category. Robust and defined data privacy laws and rules are only possible with investment and support from the leadership team.

The best data privacy practices to adopt and protect yourself are as follows.

Start with using SSL certificates

SSL certificates can help secure your website. A secure Socket Layer or SSL certificate is used as a tool to protect a website by blocking anyone trying to gain access illegally. Online business owners install SSL certificates to their platforms to stay safe and secure from any attack to protect data from falling into the wrong hands.

SSL certificates focus on securing communication by providing a transmission layer that protects sensitive data. Investing in an SSL certificate ensures that any communication between the server and the website is encrypted, thereby protecting data from hacking.

But a single-domain SSL certificate will only protect one domain; if you are looking for an SSL certificate for multiple domains, you need a multi-domain certificate. A multi-domain certificate is a single certificate, which secures multiple domain and sub-domain names.

Software and plugins need to be checked clearly

A lot of businesses use software and plugins that help in simplifying operations and cutting costs. But this software and plugins are vulnerable to cyber threats that could lead to a data breach.

Thoughthese plugins and software assist in making operations more streamlined, you need to take extra care of the security gaps and loopholes. Software and plugins must be thoroughly checked before usingand ensure that they have all the proper credentials and adhere to rating standards.

Screen and detect any suspicious behaviour

It is important to equip the business system to monitor and alert you on all your data continuously. With the help of this process, businesses can identify and monitor user's personal data, keep track of who is accessing this data, and most importantly, highlight any unusual activity.

Manage data effectively

You will never hear anyone complain of having too much access to data; why would they when they already have easy access? This is why frequent reviews ensure that only the people intended have access to the right data.

News and resources regarding data privacy

Data privacy has become a mainstream concern over the past few years, especially amongst online business owners, and coverage of this issue has appeared in all the major media. However, if you want to stay updated with the latest news in the data privacy field, you should visit websites such as WIRED and HackerNoon.


While this is just a quick, simple guide for you to follow and understand data privacy, you need to understand that data privacy is an emerging topic drawing the attention of both users and online business owners. Data privacy still has a long way to go, and we're still in the phase of making it safer for everyone involved.

Until then it is advisable that while that happens, you do not compromise on the security and take the necessary steps to keep your data private, safe, and protected. Here is a video to lighten the mood after all this.

Ransomware: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)

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