“Businesses will witness an increase in class-action lawsuits in the personal data space in 2021-2022”: Huawei

Businesses will Witness an Increase in Class-Action Lawsuits in the Personal Data Space in 2021 2022 Huawei
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Huawei is persuading corporates to concentrate on data minimization and business continuity management to mitigate data security challenges. The company hosted a webinar including an expert council to talk over the lessons learned on data protection in 2020 and the tendencies to watch out in 2021. The speakers included Felix Wittern, Partner at a multinational law firm, Fieldfisher; Ramses Gallego, International Chief Technology Officer, Cyber Security at global software & IT company Micro Focus; and Joerg Thomas, Data Protection Officer at Huawei.

The panel proposed a detailed notion, providing the legal, technical, and business suggestions of heightening shifts and rigorous enforcements in data protection laws on corporates in the telecoms business. Referring to increased litigation threats, the committee discussed how co-operation, focus on technology, and transparency would support corporates formulate for future challenges.

According to Huawei, 2020 was a challenging year for data protection – COVID-19 digital contact tracing and general health oversight put into an already sophisticated human rights and privacy laws landscape.

The Schrems II verdict and a looming Brexit fiddle some fundamental transformations that will completely unfold in 2021. Added to this were data sovereignty strategies of governments, stricter enforcement of General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), not to speak of the effect of new technologies such as 5G and artificial intelligence (AI), it asserts.

“There’s never a dull day in privacy! Take for example the Schrems II ruling that was announced in July last year – it poses one of the biggest challenges around international data transfers, outside the European Economic Area (EEA),” says Felix Wittern, partner, Fieldfisher.

“As regulators themselves make sense of the evolving situation, MNCs that do not tread carefully will be liable for hefty fines. In fact, while COVID-19 actually slowed down enforcements, going forward I predict a lot of litigation in this space,” he says.

“Corporates will do well to co-operate with regulators as a common ground is reached rather than take a confrontational stance.”

“Living in a cloud-generation era, we are increasingly dealing with the emergence of shadow IT or shadow data where content is backed up on multiple clouds, without the knowledge of data compliance departments,” Gallego says.

“Corporates need to understand the dangers in this – legal departments cannot effectively protect what they don’t know exists! Only when corporates build an ecosystem that automates and orchestrates authentication, authorisation and appropriate access can we hope to create a systematic and systemic solution to the issue of data protection.”

Wrapping up a to-do list for endeavors, Joerg Thomas, director, Data Protection Officer, Huawei, adds, “We may witness an increase in class action-style lawsuits in the personal data space in 2021-22 as aggravated parties view judicial remedy as a potentially faster way to get redress when their data rights are violated.

“Businesses need to be transparent about the transfer locations of personal data and the types of data being transferred, and take into account the legal requirements in the receiving jurisdiction,” he says.

“A return to “basics” is essential – records of processing activities (RoPa), privacy notices and cookies should always be up-to-date and compliant with governing laws. From a long-term sustainable point of view, organisations will need to adopt data minimisation and privacy by design and default, and at all times ensure that business continuity management (BCM) plans are in place.”

Written by Ritik Gupta

His name is Ritik Gupta; currently pursuing law. He has always kept pride as his everything. He deems writing as not like any other hobby but a reflection of one’s intellectuality. He likes to research on the parasitic problems and then lay them down in such a means that can be of assistance to the society. He just not studies law but treats it a controversial weapon to defeat the wrong.

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