CalOPPA.  GDPR.  COPPA.  CCPA.  VCDPA.  That’s a whole bunch of letters that seem like nonsense – right up until your website gets hacked and your clients’ data is breached.  And if you aren’t compliant with the laws that that alphabet soup stands for – you could be facing stiff penalties and possible consumer lawsuits.

OK – that sounds like scary stuff.  Data Privacy is no joke.  The European Union led the charge on enacting stringent laws to protect consumer data and privacy.  California followed suit and now Virginia is on the board too as of January 2023.  No less than 6 states currently have legislation in some stage of the process.  Canada, Australia, Brazil and many other counties already have data laws in effect.  It likely won’t be long before the US has a Federal Data Privacy Law passed.

If you have a website – you have to have a Privacy Policy.  It’s as simple as that.  And you have to comply with all the laws out there!  But having a policy that adheres to the strictest of laws (currently the European Union’s GDPR and California’s CCPA), means you’re covered.  

No, having a privacy policy in place doesn’t mean you won’t ever experience a data breach.  But in the event that you do, having it in place means you may avoid the worst of the consequences of non-compliance – hefty fines and potential lawsuits.  Knowing that those risks are off the table can give you a whole lot of peace of mind.

So what does a privacy policy look like?  Well, first and foremost, it needs to state what your policy actually IS.  Simply having a policy posted online isn’t enough – you have to actually carry through on the terms of your policy.

At a minimum, your policy must include:

  1. A clear description of what Data is collected and how.
  2. An explanation of how data is handled and stored.
  3. Clear language as to whether data is sold or not.
  4. A list or statement of the consumer’s rights with respect to their data, including the ability to opt out of data collection and sale.
  5. A Cookies Policy.
  6. Contact information of the business.

Data Privacy Laws don’t have to be scary.  And implementing and posting a compliant privacy policy doesn’t have to be hard.  Adopt and post your policy, review it annually for compliance with changes in the laws, and practice what your policy states.  That’s it!

In The Know Legal makes compliance with the most current data laws easy – we offer a stand-alone Privacy Policy template, or for more comprehensive legal protection – packages that include a Website Terms of Use and the Privacy Policy.

And now, you’re In The Know!

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