“Privacy means people know what they’re signing up for, in plain language, and repeatedly. I believe people are smart. Some people want to share more than other people do. Ask them.” – Steve Jobs

The above statement by Steve Jobs emphasizes the criticality of the awareness and consent of the users before giving away their information to businesses. Though privacy is a basic right of every human, however, the digital revolution has created many challenges against it. GDPR is a European regulation that tends to protect the privacy and security of consumers’ data. 

Do you know that GDPR compliance has become the top priority of online businesses since its enactment? The main reason – companies want to keep clear from hefty fines. This blog post will provide you a high-level GDPR compliance checklist for ecommerce businesses. First, let’s learn what’s GDPR and why it is important for ecommerce businesses.

What is GDPR?

It is a short form of general data protection regulation.  It is heavy documentation of rules and regulations – having a total of 99 articles! You can read the regulations here. These rules direct how to collect, store, and use EU residents’ data. These requirements were introduced to prevent invasive data tracking and manipulations. GDPR for ecommerce ensures the consent and control of consumers over their data. 

Personal Data defined in the GDPR Compliance Checklist

GDPR defines personal data as follows:

 “Any information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person.”

It is not limited to the name, address, or financial information of an individual. Personal data under GDPR includes genetic data, biometric data, location data, online identifiers, political opinions, religious beliefs, health data, etc. 

Why GDPR for Ecommerce Matters?

It is not just a moral obligation for ecommerce companies to follow the GDPR compliance checklist. GDPR violations may cause heavy lawsuits and fines. In case an ecommerce business has data of an EU national and it does not follow the GDPR compliance checklist – such a company can face fines up to 4% of the global revenue!

There are big names in the ecommerce market that faced lawsuits in millions. These include the ecommerce giants Amazon and Spotify.

Is the GDPR Compliance checklist limited for EU businesses only?

You might be wondering whether you need to worry about GDPR compliance if your online business does not reside in Europe. Yes, you must worry, because a single EU customer may cause you legal obligations and hefty fines! 

GDPR Compliance Checklist

GDPR Compliance Checklist
Source: Dylan Gillis, Unsplash

Awareness and Accountability

  1. Devise a GDPR awareness and implementation plan for all employees of your business including top management and IT staff.
  2. Allocate human and technical resources to GDPR implementation for ecommerce.
  3. Be aware of the updates of your GDPR implementation progress.

Consumer Consent and Data Policy Distribution

  1. Device consent criteria for collecting consumer data.
  2. Document proof of consent for the collected data.
  3. Device and distribute the privacy notices on your web sites, apps, and online services according to GDPR.
  4. Make sure that the notices are easily readable without any difficulty or misconception.
  5. Consider all third-party partners in your privacy notices.
  6. Give clear contact details of your company and associated partners.

Data Collection, Usage, and Storage 

  1. Get the consent of users before data collection, storage, and usage.
  2. Conduct audits of the information you hold online and offline.
  3. Conduct regular security audits of data collection, storage, usage, and sharing. 
  4. Develop a data retention and deletion policy in case consumers use their rights to get data deleted.
  5. Use data security mechanisms to store, use, and share data such as access control and data encryption.

Incident Response and Reporting

  1. Regularly audit your ecommerce website for potential data breaches.
  2. Make a swift reporting mechanism for data breaches.
  3. Make sure that breach incident response is fast and effective.

Wrapping up

Remember, GDPR compliance not only saves you from unpleasant legal and financial issues but also gives you a competitive advantage.  This compliance checklist will guide you to understand and comply with the guidelines of GDPR.

To make sure that your website is GDPR compliant, contact a GDPR aware web development company. Make your online business cyber-smart and stay ahead in growth and prosperity.

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