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GDPR is great, so why are people complaining about endless GDPR emails?

With the advent of GDPR legislation, organisations are finally waking-up to the fact they no longer ‘own’ data and citizens are demanding to know exactly what their data is being used for. Independent research shows 65% of UK citizens now want access to their data and 95% want more, or full control, over who organisations are sharing their data with*.

GDPR is a force for good to establish a trusting relationship between two parties. Without trust between organisations and individuals – it’s hard for any organisation to establish a brand loyal customer.

Our view is to think of GDPR – like a relationship – a dating game:
• GDPR allows individuals to take control of the relationship – so don’t complain!
• GDPR allows organisations to build stronger relationships with those individuals that actually want to hear from them
• GDPR means transparency in the relationship – so nothing – even personal data is hidden
• GDPR means everyone knows the boundaries of the relationship – mutual understanding

Like a relationship, you have a choice, you either communicate what you need to get the relationship right OR walk away and break it off. It’ll save the emotional pain and give relief to organisations who are desperately wanting you to like them (but will save them money to spend on those that do).

So, GDPR is good! Don’t complain – pick the relationships you want to have!

We have long pioneered the belief that the citizen should be handed back control of their personal data and we see GDPR as representing a real opportunity for organisations to regain the trust of their customers and clients. The new legislation should be viewed as an enabler, not an inhibiter, allowing organisations to continue processing and sharing citizens’ data, for the right purposes.

Talk to many organisations and they seem focussed purely on the Sword of Damocles that is May 25th and its inherent threat of huge fines. But there needs to be a sea-change in how organisations view this date – not the end of the road for focusing on GDPR, rather, a new beginning, an opportunity to re-establish trust and enhance growth.

We all need a deeper understanding of what GDPR really means – citizens need to understand the rights to ownership they have over their data and organisations need to understand the responsibility they hold in protecting citizens’ personal data. Surely building two-way trust and transparency can only be a good thing?

A perfect example would be the sharing of data for the good of public health: Take the NHS test bed programme, Diabetes Digital Coach, which sees healthcare providers adopting new ways of working by harnessing the latest technology and making smarter use of data – from pre-empting patient conditions before symptoms worsen, to targeting more effective treatments, they can now utilise everything from connected ‘wearable’ devices to artificial intelligence to look for the tiniest clues.

Case studies such as this emphasise how vital it is that organisations start embracing, not fighting, GDPR. In the wake of GDPR legislation, there is a balance that needs to be redressed – organisations will need to focus on encouraging their clients and customers to share their personal data and the benefits of such data sharing -without a level of trust, this could be a tall ask and so this building of trust is imperative.

For trust to grow, organisations need to continue to comply to GDPR’s ethos well beyond 25th May.