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Insight

Data localization: how to collect, store, and transfer data from country to country

Data collection, information storage and its transfer across country or regional borders (think Russia, Kazakhstan, Australia, or EU) resides in an increasingly complex realm. Here is what you should consider for your practices.

By
Kristina Podnar
,
on
February 2, 2016

Data collection, information storage and its transfer across country or regional borders (think Russia, Kazakhstan, Australia, or EU) resides in an increasingly complex realm. As the data owner, you have a choice: do nothing and hinder your marketing and business effort, or develop a sound policy that answers the legal requirements while performing steadily for your organization.

Consider the following scenario: you are collecting the names and email addresses of individuals in Russia for marketing purposes. You are also collecting trends about the number of times an individual visits your website, which products they browse, and what they purchase in person through their loyalty card which is tied to the customer’s email. You cannot legally export this information from Russia to the USA for processing through your CRM or analytics tools. However, you can export the anonymized data as well as aggregated data.

In other words, you can take “like and like data” for multiple similar types of information, stripping it of its unique identifiers (e.g., name and email address) and serve the data up to your marketing team to analyze trends and deduce how to best target consumers with your 2016 catalogue of products.

Tackling this effort can be challenging, but highly rewarding. The key to success might appear to be the strategy, but in reality, it is your strategy aligned with your policy in these endeavors that will be most rewarding to the organization and free you from legal risks and associated fines.

So the next time you start collecting information, whatever the digital channel, (i.e. web format, social media, mobile application, or others) consider your goals, then arm yourself with the necessary digital policies. You will be rewarded with the freedom to be creative and explore marketing possibilities while limiting business risk.

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