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Many Oz Companies Face Ruin Over New EU Rules: Report

Many Oz Companies Face Ruin Over New EU Rules: Report

Nearly 25 percent of Australian organisations fear that failure to comply with new European Union regulations on data regulation could put new strains on their systems – and even drive them out of business, according to a report from Veritas Technologies.

The upcoming General Data Protection Regulation (GPDR), which takes effect in May next year, will not only affect companies within the EU, but extend globally, impacting any company that offers goods or services to EU residents, or monitors their behaviour, for example, by tracking their buying habits, the study says.

Non-compliance could bring fines as high as €20 million (A$29 million) or four percent of annual turnover – whichever is greater.

GDPR requires greater oversight of where and how personal data – including credit card, banking and health information – is stored and transferred, and how access to will be policed and audited by organisations.

The Veritas study indicates 46 percent of Australian organisations have major doubts that they will be able to meet the impending compliance deadline.

Veritas’s 2017 GDPR Report surveyed more than 900 senior business decision makers in 2017 across Europe, the US and Asia Pacific. Among other things it found that 29 percent of Australian respondents are “very worried” about potential layoffs. They fear staff reductions may be an inevitable outcome as a result of financial penalties incurred from GDPR compliance failures.

The research found that many companies are facing serious challenges in understanding what data they have on European customers, where that data is located, and its relevance to the business.

Australian companies are said to be struggling to solve these challenges, because they lack the proper technology to address compliance regulations.

Big spending may be required to set up a compliance system, with seven-figure investments said to be the norm. On average, companies are forecasting spending approximately A$1.86 million.

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