GDPR consultancy services

To ensure GDPR compliance, organisations must have the correct polices, processes and technology in place or risk incurring large penalties. Understanding the requirements, and ensuring compliance, is a challenge that needs professional insight.

GDPR and business IT

At its heart, GDPR has seven central principles which are often described as the ‘building blocks’ on which an organisation should create their data protection processes and practices:

  • lawfulness, fairness, and transparency
  • purpose limitation
  • data minimisation
  • accuracy
  • storage limitation
  • integrity and confidentiality (security)
  • accountability

Within the context of assessing IT systems, the two principles of most note are likely to be:

  • data minimisation (i.e. that businesses and organisations should not collect and store any more data than is absolutely necessary)
  • integrity and confidentiality (e.g. taking all possible steps to ensure an individual’s information is not accidentally leaked as part of a data breach or accessed by malicious parties.)
A website data capture form displayed on a laptop that would be subject to GDPR rules

What does GDPR apply to?

The regulations apply to personal data that allows a living person to be directly, or indirectly, identified. This could be their name, username or email, or something less obvious like an IP address.

There are also certain categories of personal data that are afforded greater protections, including information about:

  • racial or ethnic origin
  • political opinions
  • religious beliefs
  • membership of trade unions
  • genetic and biometric data
  • health information
  • data concerning a person's sex life or sexual orientation

A GDPR consultant can advise as to whether your processes are robust enough, particularly in respect of the special categories.

Working with a GDPR consultancy

Gap analysis

This will typically be the first step in evaluating the current level of compliance within an organisation. The aim is to understand what the business’ strengths and weaknesses are, in terms of meeting compliance requirements, and then using the findings to:

  • explain where the business is failing to meet its requirements, and the potential consequences
  • begin formulating a strategy or action plan for fixing any non-compliance issues.

Implementing recommendations

The next step is to ensure that the shortcomings found in the research phase are addressed.

While businesses can initiate an internal project to implement the recommendations, having professional expertise on-hand to assist will ensure the changes are managed effectively (e.g. planning and prioritising the actions) and that the changes result in full compliance.

What ‘implementation’ ultimately resembles for a business will be down to the recommendations made. Broadly, it is likely to involve the introduction of new or revised procedures, policies, and strategies across a range of business functions.

In the case of your IT, this could mean introducing changes to elements such as data sharing, network security, or how data is routed internally through your organisation and the hardware and software used to achieve this.

Employee being interviewed by a GDPR consultant as part of a gap analysis

Ensuring ongoing compliance

Data protection regulation will continue to evolve and the systems you use must keep up with developments. One of the most important advantages a GDPR consultancy can provide is to ensure that your business stays up-to-date and remains compliant.

GDPR auditing and strategy

To remain compliant, the business must evaluate its GDPR framework on a regular basis. This includes re-evaluating IT policies, processes, and technology, and conducting an audit of information handling, including:

  • what data is collected and why
  • how you use and store data
  • who has access to it
  • how long you keep it
  • how secure it is.

Working with a professional GDPR consultancy service ensures that this process becomes a standard and regular procedure, and that their knowledge and expertise feeds into the formation of sound and effective strategy.

Data collection

Your data collection process must be transparent, and you should check and amend any forms you use to obtain information. For example, if customers must enter their personal details into your website, provide a statement explaining what data is collected, and why. Only collect the data you need for this purpose.


Under GDPR, businesses are encouraged to view data breaches as a likely possibility, rather than just theoretical. This means there is an immediate and direct need to adopt a proactive approach to network security.

The robustness of your network is therefore key. A consultancy with professional experience of implementing cybersecurity measures can provide immense value, in this regard.

In addition to implementing standard network and server security practices, such as restricting virtual and physical access and installing anti-malware software, external experts may also be able to help implement the use of encryption for sensitive information.

Should someone gain unauthorised access to the data on the network, there must also be a clearly defined and compliant procedure for detecting, reporting, and managing the breach. Experienced consultants can help to draft, implement, and (eventually) audit this process.

GDPR training

Everyone in your organisation should at least be aware of the importance of GDPR and the processes necessary for ensuring data is handled appropriately.

An experienced and resourceful consultancy may be able to provide staff with data protection training and ensure – through regular audits – that best practice is being adhered to.

They may also be able to help reinforce understanding of processes by helping to write or amend the staff handbook and design the procedures it describes.

A data security training session in progress

Virtual Data Protection Officer (vDPO)

If your business requires ad-hoc compliance support, handles large amounts of data, or is a public organisation, a GDPR consultancy may be able to provide you with the option of retaining a vDPO. They will be your accessible and reliable go-to source for accurate advice and can offer professional insight tailored to your business’ circumstances.

Getting professional support with GDPR compliance

If your business is struggling with the demanding expectations of GDPR compliance, Micro Maintenance can provide the knowledge, experience, and rigour you need to get your organisation on track.

As an ISO-certified organisation with IBITG-qualified GDPR practitioners, we can ensure that your business complies with data protection regulations, and continues to remain compliant year after year.

With a range of compliance projects completed to a proven level of excellence, you can be assured that we will accurately determine your organisation’s compliance needs, and work effectively alongside you to develop clear, resilient, and effective policies and processes.

To arrange a free consultation, get in touch today.

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