What You Need to Know About POPIA
We have been hearing and speaking about the Protection of Personal Information Act, 4 of 2013 (POPIA) for quite some time. Marketers and employers have been wondering when it will be in place and enforced.
The Protection of Personal Information – or POPI – Act regulates how organisations handle personal information, whether it is for individuals or other businesses. Personal information ranges from ID numbers, to credit card details that you may take for payments and employment history. The Act regulates how you store, process and share information – MSMonline. It affects most departments within your business such as marketing, finance and HR.
Here is what you need to know about the POPI Act:
Key provisions of POPIA commenced on 1 July 2020. Employers have until the 1 July 2021 to ensure their workplaces are fully POPIA compliant.
How does POPIA affect your business?
Firstly, look for the technology you need to ensure you have record of a persons’ consent to access their information. For example, if you are in marketing all your subscribers need to have opted-in to receive communication from your organisation.
Secondly, check how you store client details (it needs to be on a secure system) and if you take online payments their card details have to be encrypted and destroyed immediately after the sale. For manual card entries, you need to store the records in a safe.
Remember to cover your bases by adding disclaimers to your physical and digital forms where applicable; update your terms and conditions to let your employees, subscribers or customers know how you are in compliance with POPIA and how you are managing, storing or destroying their data.
By complying with POPIA, you build more trust with your employees, customers and subscribers. Anyone who engages with your business must know their personal information is secure and protected. Now more than ever, consumers demand greater transparency from businesses. Use this transparency to allow your business to audit your database toward having more engaged subscribers who have a genuine interest in receiving updates and news from your company.
Remember, by complying, you are decreasing both security and legal risks for your business. If you don’t comply with POPIA you risk receiving a hefty fine and/or imprisonment for up to 12 months.
Download our simple guide to being POPIA compliant. It has a full checklist you can use to ensure you are ready for 1 July 2021!