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DPIA Overview

What is a Data Protection Impact Assessment, and why is it important?

To read the GDPR text on DPIAs in its own words see this link.

What are DPIAs (Data Protection Impact Assessments)?

Under the Article 35 of the GDPR, DPIAs, or Data Protection Impact Assessments are mandatory for processing activities that are “likely to result in a high risk to the rights and freedoms of data subjects”. DPIAs function to analyze, identify, and minimize data protection risks. 

DPIAs are expected to include:

  1. A description of the processing activity
  2. A legal basis for data processing (for example, Consent of the data subject)
  3. An evaluation of the risks of the data processing including likelihood & severity
  4. Add any necessary mitigations to ensure an appropriate residual risk

Why it's important:

  1. Risk Assessment: The DPIA helps identify and minimize the data protection risks of a project. Think of it like checking the safety of a playground before letting kids play.
  2. Compliance: It ensures that organizations comply with GDPR requirements, avoiding heavy fines and legal issues. It's like following safety rules to avoid getting in trouble.
  3. Trust Building: It builds trust with customers and the public, showing that the organization takes data protection seriously. It's like showing that you're a good, responsible friend.

When it's needed: A DPIA is particularly important when introducing new data processing technologies, processing large amounts of sensitive data, or when the processing activities could affect individuals' rights and freedoms significantly.

Overall importance: It's very important! A DPIA is not just a legal requirement but also a critical practice for responsible data management, protecting both the organization and the individuals whose data is being processed. Think of it as an essential part of the puzzle in ensuring everyone's data is safe and handled correctly.

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