I do not profess to know my HTTPS from my elbow, but my interest was piqued this week to attend the Tech for Good event in Bath to learn more about General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and data protection. It seems the implications of GDPR are a key preoccupation of every organisation, whether run for social good or not.
I wanted to learn anything about how it would affect what we do in our little marketing agency, as we use a lot of data to devise personalised, one to one mailings. I knew that GDPR was going to be relevant and important to how we conduct our data processes in the future, but I needed a starting point. There is only so much reading you can do on this subject before glazing over and putting it off for another day.
So along I went, convinced that if I could just learn one iota more about GDPR, then that would be a good and positive step to have taken. As I marched myself through the dark streets of Bath towards the venue, Boston Tea Party, I reassured myself that even if I felt like a complete fish out of water, surrounded by experts using digital technology for social good, at the very least I knew could get a decent coffee.
If I had known how inspired and uplifted I was by the end of the evening, I would have signed up to Tech For Good ages ago!
What an incredible bunch of people I was surrounded by; so open, grounded and supportive. It was super refreshing to be amongst such an upbeat and relaxed group. What caught me completely unawares, was that instead of feeling like a fish out of water, I felt as though I had just joined my shoal!
Tech for Good Bath encourages individuals and organisations who are passionate about using technology for social impact to come together and share knowledge and expertise. Recently the movement has supported local charity, Bath Welcomes Refugees, to set up computers for refugees in Bath. Each meetup is based around a key topic and expert speakers are invited to share their knowledge, then there is an opportunity to share a community shout out – whether you need support, guidance or specific expertise.
I have come away from the recent meetup completely buzzing and empowered from gleaning little nuggets of information from each of the speakers who shared their tips on preparing for GDPR. These tips will help us get ready and are indeed relevant for anyone doing any form of data marketing. I am excited to return to the group, and see how my skills may also support local charities and organisations along their marketing journey.
My New GDPR Action List now comprises:-
- Understand exactly where our data is stored, how it was collected, have it all kept in one place and our reasons for storing and using it
- Clearly document our process for data storing and data usage
- Get rid of old data (yup, even those peaky emails with database attachments going back decades)
- Review any privacy policies we use to show that we are respecting our customers’ privacy
- Go on line and get a Cyber Essentials certification
- Use ICO’s 12 Steps to GDPR as a starting point to devise our road map for preparing for GDPR
So my GDPR journey has started and I have to say I am excited by it. I learnt more from one Tech For Good Evening, than from the many hours of research I have been trying to do on the internet these past few weeks.
So maybe I’m doing myself an injustice and I can spot the difference between HTTPS and my elbow.