In-house lawyers urged to 'get to grips' with GDPR

With the GDPR deadline less than six months away, workers everywhere are being urged to make sure they are ready for the new rules - even the company lawyers.

Speaking at a recent Law Society In-House Division seminar, KPMG’s associate general counsel Ian Dunn told in-house lawyers everywhere to “get a handle” on GDPR and what it means for their companies. 

According to the Law Gazette, Dunn added that those lawyers who will be responsible for having their company GDPR-compliant will need assistance, saying, ‘You need to get the board on board. That can be quite a challenge for lawyers sometimes. For KPMG one of the big drivers is clients, [who are] demanding that we have got a compliance roadmap and want to know where we are. That’s got the attention of the board.’

Dunn also suggested solicitors should create something of a standard questionnaire for departments. ‘You’re repairing holes in the road. Unless you have that written down in a consistent manner you are never going to feel like you’ve got your hands around data boundaries in your organisation,’ he said. ‘It’s a huge task. If that’s something you have not yet done, I suggest it’s something you need to get a handle on pretty quickly.’

The GDPR, or General Data Protection Regulation, is a new regulation that aims to organize how businesses collect, store, secure and share EU-based customers data. It will come into force in late May next year, replacing all other legislation in EU member states along the way. 

One of the biggest talking points of the GDPR are the fines in case of a breach – up to €20 million or 4 per cent global annual turnover, whichever is higher. 

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