Tuesday 19 September 2017

IT security firm invests €300,000 in new GDPR consultancy service for Irish businesses

Pictured (L-R) are: Pat Larkin, CEO, Ward Solutions, and Paul Hogan, CTO, Ward Solutions
Pictured (L-R) are: Pat Larkin, CEO, Ward Solutions, and Paul Hogan, CTO, Ward Solutions
Louise Kelly

Louise Kelly

Ward Solutions have launched a new GDPR consultancy service aimed to help Irish businesses cope with the new data protection rules coming into force.

Ahead of the new regulation, which comes into effect across the EU from May 25 next, the IT security firm has invested €300,000 in staff training, accreditation and new hires to make this new service available.

According to the information security provider, a dedicated team of fifteen consultants will solely work on helping organisations in Ireland comply with the incoming General Data Protection Regulation.

The team have attained GDPR-specific certifications such as the Certified Data Protection Practitioner from ICS Skills, the EU General Data Protection Regulation Certificate from the International Board for IT Governance, and the Certificate in Data Protection Practice from the Law Society of Ireland.

"Demand for this service is so high that fifteen of our experienced data privacy consultants are now working solely on GDPR, and will be continuing to do so for the foreseeable future,"  Paul Hogan, chief technology officer, Ward Solutions, said.

"We are forecasting new revenues of €500,000 from this service alone, which will have an enormously positive effect on the company on the whole."

Pictured (L-R) are: Pat Larkin, CEO, Ward Solutions, and Paul Hogan, CTO, Ward Solutions
Pictured (L-R) are: Pat Larkin, CEO, Ward Solutions, and Paul Hogan, CTO, Ward Solutions

The new GDPR will replace extremely outdated data protection regulation - last amended in 2003, before many of the most ubiquitous holders of personal data – Facebook, Instagram, Twitter – were even created.

Failure to demonstrate compliance could lead to companies facing fines of up to €20m or 4pc of global turnover, depending on which is greater.

As part of Ward's new offering, the consultants will help companies to assess compliance readiness and identify the different types of data in their possession.

Furthermore, the firm's Data Protection Officer as-a-service will provide companies with access to an information security privacy specialist who will provide expert knowledge of GDPR and data privacy best practice - and oversee the implementation of GDPR.

"This new GDPR consultancy service from Ward Solutions will enable Irish companies to identify what personal data they are processing, where it is located and what their legal justifications for processing are," said Mr Hogan.

"This will allow organisations to establish whether or not the manner in which they process personal data is compliant with GDPR."

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