The 30th June deadline for key elements of the Protection of Personal Information Act (POPIA) to come into effect looms large for many an organisation in South Africa. If you work with data in any form, ensuring that your business has its POPIA compliance in order will prove crucial, especially if you do not want the Information Regulator to come knocking.
In order to ensure it is compliant with POPIA, communication and marketing software provider CM.com has partnered with local law firm Webber Wentzel to help it better understanding the multi-layered Act.
In recent months we have seen many organisations scramble to ask POPIA experts and those in the legal fraternity about how best to proceed, with these kinds of partnerships likely set to increase post 30th June.
“As the platform stores and integrates customer data, it is critical that CM.com, and other companies like it, comply with the act when it comes to processing and protecting personal information,” explains a press release sent to Hypertext regarding the partnership.
Given that fines of up to R10 million or jail sentences of up to 10 years can be dished out by the Information Regulator for POPIA compliance failure, it looks like larger organisations will need to their homework and put the right steps in place if they wish to continue to operate within South Africa.
In the coming weeks, organisations the size of CM.com will have a magnifying glass on them to ensure they are compliant. We have also seen many financial institutions sent out notifications and reminders to customers over the past couple of weeks to communicate how their data is stored and who accesses it.
This is something that Webber Wentzel has assisted CM.com on, as losing the trust of customers as to the protection and privacy of their data is a mistake few can afford to make.
“With the work that the teams have put in to ensure compliance, CM.com customers can have peace of mind that important information is managed correctly, and that the platform’s features and functionality will help them stay on the right side of the law,” notes James Bayhack, director for Sub-Saharan Africa at CM.com.
“CM.com has demonstrated that it is serious about properly implementing the requirements of POPIA on its platform. After going through Webber Wentzel’s targeted compliance programme, CM.com is able to assure its clients that its processes, systems and platform are geared towards ensuring POPIA compliance,” adds Peter Grealy, a partner at Webber Wentzel.
If you have concerns regarding your own business’ POPIA compliance, it may be worthwhile leaning on the knowledge of experts.