The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) will soon affect the way companies conduct online business, store sensitive data, and handle privacy rights. 

While the provisions were crafted with California residents in mind, many industry experts predict that laws similar to the CCPA will soon be adopted in other states and eventually, at a federal level. Even now, companies are impacted if they have any cause to handle the personal data of California residents. 

The potential scope and impact of the CCPA are hard to estimate fully. What is certain is that the CCPA is here to stay — it’s essential to evaluate your policies and procedures around data privacy sooner rather than later. 

Bear in mind, too, that the CCPA was enacted through a ballot initiative. Voters made it clear that they want more control over their shared data. Today’s consumer expects companies to handle their data in a reliable way. This expectation is not limited to California residents.

What is the CCPA?

The CCPA is aimed at protecting individual privacy rights. These rights primarily apply to consumer data. In truth, any private information your company is storing that belongs to a California resident could be subject to these new laws. 

Staying compliant will become vital as the law goes into effect in January. Companies who willfully avoid compliance can be fined under CCPA provisions.

Essentially, the CCPA grants new and enhanced data privacy rights to California residents. To remain compliant, businesses must adjust their policies to address those rights.

A few of these new guidelines include:

1.   Requiring the disclosure of consumer data that is collected, sold, or disclosed. Further, consumers now have a right to know why and how that data is being used.

2.   Anti-discrimination guidelines that protect consumers when they are exercising their CCPA rights. For instance, under CCPA, businesses generally can’t set a higher price for consumers who request more information about how their data is used.

3.   Requiring companies to provide consumers with access to their own data

4.   If requested, businesses must delete consumer data. This extends to third parties. If you’ve shared a consumer’s data with a third party, that third party may also be required to delete some of the consumer’s data. 

5.   Allowing consumers to easily opt-out of having their data sold. 

Do I need to comply with the CCPA?

Specifically, the CCPA will affect companies whose business activities fall within one of three parameters:

1.   The business has an annual gross revenue of over $25 million.

2.   The business annually buys, receives, sells, or shares the personal information of 50,000 or more consumers, households, or devices.

3.   The business derives 50% or more of its annual revenue from selling consumer personal information.

As you can see, the CCPA is primarily geared to regulate large companies who deal in the sale and distribution of consumer data. Remember, however, that the first provision above applies to any business with gross revenue above $25 million, regardless of its industry, if they handle the data of even a single California resident.

How can I prepare for the CCPA?

First, take a few common-sense measures. Audit your systems and take a look at your corporate data privacy, ideally in partnership with a data privacy attorney. 

Second, consider investing in emerging tech tools that can add a deeper layer of data privacy protection. Artificial intelligence technology, in particular, holds a great deal of promise when it comes to complying with the CCPA and improving the way companies handle data in general. 

Third, invest time and resources in data mapping so that you have a good handle on where data is stored on your network and how you will retrieve it when requested. AI technology can map your data and update your systems as new data is added. 

Smart Data Management

The CCPA addresses data management activities specifically, a fact that many business owners will need to address.  

Data management has become a time-consuming, stressful task for many businesses. The collection, processing, and securing of consumer, employee, and third-party data takes up a great deal of bandwidth on many fronts.

AI-based data management solutions can take away much of the burden of these tasks. AI tools can add efficiency to your data management processes and a layer of protection against fraud and other causes of data breaches. 

The CCPA will usher in an even longer list of required data management duties. Enhanced identification verification measures will be needed to stay compliant, and companies will be required to maintain a complete, detailed history of every private data transaction.  

AI solutions can add automation and increased security to your data management system.

Continuous Networking Monitoring and Analysis

The modern data privacy environment all but requires around-the-clock surveillance of networked systems to ensure data is secure at all times. Manual, legacy processes cannot keep up with these demands, an issue that will only become more pronounced over time.

The use of private data is an increasingly necessary component of most business transactions, online and in person. It’s a bit of a catch-22. Consumers are often hesitant to share their data, yet the verification of that data is the only way to safeguard it

Keeping a watchful eye over that data at all times is a daunting concept, but continuous network monitoring is an especially well-suited job for modern AI. 

AI can quickly map large networks down to the smallest details. For example, AI could keep tabs on suspected unauthorized employee activities like large amounts of sensitive data being sent to a personal email account. 

AI is simply a smarter, better way to analyze network traffic.

Zero Day Attacks

The CCPA stipulates that organizations must implement “reasonable” security measures, though the legislation does not list specifics. Upgrading your systems to an unsupervised AI system can help you stay on the safe side of compliance. 

MixMode has created smart AI network safety automation that can actually detect attacks the moment they happen. Preventing a data breach or fraudulent activity is far better than dealing with the aftermath

Next Steps

Modern problems require modern solutions. Set up a demo with the MixMode team to find out how we can help you enhance the way you handle and monitor data with smart, third-wave AI.

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