The General Data Protection Regulation Has Landed. Now What?

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The General Data Protection Regulation Has Landed. Now What?

Millions of peoples’ inboxes were filled to the brim in the run up to May 25th – GDPR D-Day!

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has already taken effect and there are many aspects that businesses need to comply with. There have been many changes from the former Data Protection Act (DPA), making it vital for accountants and businesses alike to take notice.


GDPR: What is it?

It’s a new regulation that focusses on the processing of data (belonging to an individual in the EU) by an individual, a company or an organisation.

The way in which personal data is stored, processed, managed and shared has completely changed. There are new precautions in place which give control back to the people over their private data.


What counts as private data?

‘Any information that relates to an identified or identifiable living individual.’ (source: European Commission).

Individuals, businesses and organisations collect private data on a daily basis. The main change being that the data they store must be specifically consented to by a customer, employee or person.

Personal data includes names, home addresses, email addresses, identification card numbers, location information, IP address and cookie ID. The latter two of this list is the reason why people have updated and added a privacy and cookie policy to their website.


The implications of GDPR for accountants

We as accountants handle a great variety of client and employee data. Because of this, it’s vital that we take the right precautions to comply. There are costly penalties breaching the regulations. Organisations could be fined a standard penalty of €10 million or 2% of annual global turnover or €20m or up to a maximum of 4% annual global turnover.

Although there are great implications, it’s an opportunity for accountants to be advisers for clients and display their ability to securely hold and process information in line with the regulation.


Making Tax Digital – ensuring everyone manages tax and personal information easier

Making Tax Digital (MTD) is part of the government’s plan to simplify the process for individuals and businesses on getting their tax right and to keep on top of their affairs.

“Every individual and business now has access to their own personalised digital tax account and these are being regularly expanded and improved.” – GOV.UK.

The ambition of HMRC is to modernise their tax administrations and make it digitally advanced. There are some great benefits, one of which is making better use of information.

You will not have to give HRMC information it already has or can gain from elsewhere. Digital tax accounts will allow customers to see information that HMRC holds; you’ll be able to check these at any time.

MTD trials have already begun, with the aim of full implementation for 2020. No action is required for now, but it is something which will come into force soon.

If you have any questions in regard to GDPR or MTD, then we’d be more than happy to help give you the answers you need. Please get in touch by using either of the contact methods below:

Tel: 01204 328761


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