Data Privacy Policy

What’s the Difference Between a Data Protection Policy and a Privacy Policy

A privacy policy is a document that explains to customers how the organization collects and processes their data. It is made available to the public by organizations required to comply with privacy regulations.

A data protection policy is an internal document created for the purpose of establishing data protection policies within the organization. It is made available to company employees, as well as third parties, responsible for handling or processing sensitive data.
Key Elements to Include in Your Data Protection Policy

Your data protection policy must include at least the following elements:


The first section of your data protection policy should clearly define its scope. This includes identifying the types of personal data that your organization collects, processes, and stores, as well as the purpose for which this data is used. By establishing the scope of your policy, you can ensure that all relevant data protection issues are addressed and that your organization remains compliant with applicable regulations.

Additionally, the scope of your policy should also cover any third-party service providers that your organization works with, as well as the measures that are in place to ensure that these providers abide by the same data protection standards. This is particularly important if your organization transfers personal data across borders, as different jurisdictions may have varying data protection laws.

Before diving into the specific elements of a data protection policy, it is essential to establish clear definitions for key terms and concepts. This will ensure that all stakeholders understand the scope and requirements of the policy. Some important terms to define include:

    Personal data: Information relating to an identified or identifiable individual, such as name, identification number, location data, online identifiers etc.
    Processing: Operation performed on personal data, such as collection, recording, organization, structuring, storage, adaptation, retrieval, destruction, etc.
    Data controller: The entity that determines the purposes and means of the processing of personal data.
    Data processor: The entity that processes personal data on behalf of the data controller.
    Data subject: The individual whose personal data is being processed.
    Consent: A freely given, specific, informed, and unambiguous indication of the data subject’s agreement to the processing of their personal data.

Implementing a Data Protection Policy

A data protection policy should not remain a theoretical document. Rather, it should be implemented as part of the overall policies and governance of the organization, and treated in the same manner.

Here are several practices to consider when implementing your data protection policies:

Add it to the staff handbook—introduce the policy to your staff. Make sure they read it and understand they are required to adhere to the policy.
Provide a summarized version—if the policy is long, provide your staff with a summary that covers the main aspects and practices they are required to follow.
Offer training and supervision—when first implementing the policy, provide your staff with the training needed to effectively practice organizational data protection standards. Make sure training is provided according to individual roles and work practices.
Inform relevant third-parties—if your organization requires external contractors and partners to comply with the data protection policy, they should be provided with a copy. Additionally, you should make sure to add relevant contract clauses.

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