HERNDON, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The European Court of Justice ruling striking down the Safe Harbor agreement underscores the importance of being able to locate customers’ private and confidential data in organizations’ storage systems, according to Julie Colgan, Head of Information Governance at global technology company, Nuix.
The European Union’s highest court ruled that the Safe Harbor treaty—which allowed organizations to transfer EU nationals’ personal data between Europe and the United States—was invalid because US authorities could easily access this data stored in US-based servers, thus breaching European citizens’ right to privacy.
“US companies that hold personal data about European Union citizens are already a big target for privacy regulators in France, Germany, and other EU countries; after this decision, their scrutiny will be even tougher,” said Colgan.
The complexity of the legal situation demonstrates how important it is for organizations to have a clear picture of what private data they hold, about whom, and where, Colgan explained.
“Private data is easy enough to identify in customer databases but much harder to find in spreadsheets and documents stored as email attachments or in file shares,” she said. “Using an advanced technology such as Nuix Sensitive Data Finder, they can create a comprehensive inventory of private data across their systems and make sure it remains only in secure and compliant locations.”
Using the “named entities” functionality in Nuix Sensitive Data Finder, organizations can identify patterns of text and digits that could identify European citizens, including country names, postal codes, phone numbers, and identity numbers. Organizations can then re-use these search patterns to conduct regular sweeps of storage and messaging systems to ensure they remain compliant.
“Regardless of privacy law, identifying and managing private data is good business practice because it helps to protect this information against malicious and inadvertent breaches,” Colgan said.
Nuix (www.nuix.com) protects, informs, and empowers society in the knowledge age. Leading organizations around the world turn to Nuix when they need fast, accurate answers for investigation, cybersecurity incident response, insider threats, litigation, regulation, privacy, risk management, and other essential challenges.