Bradley attorneys Erin Illman and Steve Snyder were featured in the Charlotte Business Journal’s Table of Experts on the financial, operational and reputational risks businesses face if they ignore shifting sentiment on data privacy. Panelists, including Lisa LaVigne, corporate counsel of Premier Inc. and Scott Mickle, global privacy leader of Red Ventures, discussed how companies must navigate the new fundamentals of data privacy, the changing landscape for regulation and compliance, the potential that new legislation may spread throughout the country, creating a patchwork of disparate regulations, and best practices for getting ahead of the increasing risk.
Snyder: There used to be this adage to run fast and break things. Get your market share and don’t worry if you are 100% within the letter of the law. That is increasingly hard to do in this data privacy realm. Even if you get there, if you have practices that don’t fit into the regulations, you won’t get to the next step if you want to get acquired or get funding. Five years ago it was a free-for-all for data.
Illman: Data has always been an asset for businesses, particularly as technology advances and the use of data diversifies. Within the last several years, however, with high-profile data breaches in the news, consumers are paying more attention to how businesses use personal information. Now, data has become a liability. Privacy is critical for any business strategy. In fact, we are beginning to see privacy as a tool to obtain a competitive advantage and to strengthen a brand. For example, Google just purchased Fitbit, and Google’s privacy reputation may come into play as people consider whether to continue to use Fitbit or to go to a competitor.
The complete article, “Companies Must Navigate Public Sentiment and Ever-Changing Laws in Order to Keep Growing,” first appeared in the Charlotte Business Journal on November 22, 2019.