The digital economy is lucrative yet highly-vulnerable, with cybercriminals relentlessly hunting for vulnerabilities and security gaps. This has led to a flurry of recent data breach incidents giving rise to serious concerns about the way consumer data is managed, leading to a paradigm shift in governments’ priorities and willingness to legislate to protect individual privacy (e.g. the passage of the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (CCPA)).
By promoting greater emphasis on adherence, security and accountability, new regulations are starting to influence fresh ways of thinking about consumer data and how to safeguard it. This is giving consumers peace of mind, as stricter regulations give them more power to exercise their data rights (including being able to opt out of consent to share data). The new regulations should also be seen has a positive for businesses as businesses will now have to thoughtfully consider the amount of data they collect as well as how they store and use it. In the end, this should have a net effect of reducing costs associated with processing, network traffic and storage, making data collection and usage more streamlined and efficient.