Writer Wednesdays
Writer Wednesdays

Guest Post: Should I Worry About GDPR Regulations As a Freelancer?

Darcy Cudmore Guest Post

Well, it depends on what you’re doing as a freelancer (of course) but everybody should take some time to get used to GDPR regulations and what they mean.

When these rules came into place in 2018, it was big news and there have been tons of talk about what they mean, but I’m not sure how many freelancers took the appropriate time they should have to study them.

GDPR regulations exist mostly in Europe, but also spread across the entire world if you are a marketer and regularly contact people in Europe. In a world where the Internet connects us all, there’s a good chance you’re going to communicate with someone in Europe and you need to know what GDPR is and how it affects you.

So What Should You Know?

No matter if you are a large company with a million clients or a freelancer working with one, everyone must oblige by GDPR rules. This means that your client’s information needs to be protected by you, and this includes:

  • Full names of all involved.
  • Birth dates.
  • Physical addresses.
  • Phone numbers.
  • Email addresses.
  • Financial information.
  • IP addresses.
  • Any personal company data that is shared with you.

You can not share this information with any other freelancers you know or post in a public place for someone else’s gain. All of this information needs to be kept private and can not be openly given to anybody.

How Do I Make Sure I’m Complying?

In short, you can ensure that you are following GDPR guidelines by protecting the information on your computer and not sharing it with anyone. That means you should put strong passwords on everything, keep your information protected, and be careful where you log into things. If you are on the road and at a cafe, you shouldn’t be accessing private information you don’t want others to potentially see.

Email:

To be proactive, you should consider using encryption processes to protect your emails coming in and out. An email add-in like Permido can help you use your email safely.

This add-in can integrate seamlessly with your Outlook email and offers an end-to-end encrypted email between the freelancer and whoever they are communicating with. Not only does it provide an easy way to stay GDPR compliant, but it protects all the information coming in and out.

If you are not using Outlook for your emails, you can use Permido through a dedicated web portal.

Mailing List:

If you have a mailing list that you update regularly with updates to your services or new blog posts, you must give them an opportunity to opt-out.

You should have a clear ‘Unsubscribe’ button on every email that allows them to completely remove all of their personal information from your records.

Devices:

Your smartphone is just as important as your laptop – maybe more important – as far as encryption and the protection of information. When you use your device, you are in and out of different Internet connections and can more easily open it up for attacks.

You should look into encryption for your iPhone, Android, or whatever type of smartphone you use.

Complete an audit today!

One thing that you are probably not familiar with, but should be considered, is an audit of everything you use that holds private information and needs to be protected.

Make a list of the accounts you have, the software you are using, the information you have access to, and figure out what measures you need to make sure things are secure and in-line with new regulations.

There’s a ton of great checklists for freelancers to ensure they stay GDPR compliant!

Darcy Cudmore

Author Bio: Darcy is a Journalism graduate who loves writing content on new topics. When he isn’t working, you can find him reading a Stephen King and cheering on the Ottawa Senators.

You can learn more about him by visiting his website: https://www.darcyallanpr.com/

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