A Year Helping US Companies Protect Data
October 16th marks the beginning of my second year at Techbuyer USA following my move in 2017 from the UK office, and there is plenty to celebrate. Sales have increased by 14.45% over the last twelve months, thanks to our reputation for top quality products and excellent customer service. Warranties, high stock levels and fast delivery play a big part. So too is the care we take when dealing with the softer side of the business: data. With our European offices prepared for the changes required by the GDPR months before the regulations came into effect, we follow the same stringent practices on all incoming product here in the USA, which is useful to a large number of our customers.
At Techbuyer, we protect customer data as if it is our own. We believe that safeguarding personal and sensitive information is every company’s responsibility, regardless of what laws are in place. So much so that we were one of the few companies to be up and running with the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) seven months it came into effect. We were also accredited by the UK Government’s Cyber Essentials and IASME schemes, which helped companies prepare for the regulation ahead of time.
This impacts on the US market because US companies handling EU citizens’ data must comply with GDPR regulations. The fines for not complying with these rules are up to €20 million ($23 million) or 4% of the company’s global turnover. However, the potential penalties are more startling when you consider the long-term impacts of losing your customers’ trust.
As an example, the emergence of the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica data scandal was followed by 3 million users in Europe abandoning the social network. Facebook shares in New York fell by 19% the following day. It has never been more crucial to know what data you have, who has access to it and how it is protected. This is where Techbuyer can help.
If you sell us equipment with EU citizens’ data on it, you can have total peace of mind that this data will not be accessed by any third parties. All Techbuyer incoming equipment is data-wiped to military standards and irretrievable by any method. You can have confidence that your own and customer details are completely secure at end of life. This is a good sales message for anyone who stores sensitive or personal data, for European customers and beyond.
In June 2018, California announced a sweeping consumer privacy law, which is due to come into effect in January 2020. The details of the legislation are yet to be codified but it has been compared widely to GDPR. This means that companies dealing with customers on the West Coast will likely soon be liable to data mistreatment penalties. More laws are expected to follow, and so data protection is an issue that is of increasing importance.
At Techbuyer, we put people at the heart of our security policies. We imagine the damage that can be caused by data leaks and let everything flow from there. We regularly assess threat vectors and adapt our systems accordingly and we carry out regular training to keep things fresh. We do all this because we care about preventing data loss and protecting our clients’ and their stakeholders’ privacy. Strong relationships are founded on trust, which is why we have made it a core part of our business.
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