Data Privacy – What You Should Know

The end-user license agreement, terms and condition you didn’t read but scrolled to the end to click “I agree”? That will have been one way for you to understand how your information will be used, handled and stored but No you decided not to read it because you don’t think it is necessary.

It’s Data Privacy Week and the aim is to educate you (business or individual) to prioritize data privacy.

What is Data Privacy?

Data Privacy is the combination of the proper handling of data and its usage. Date privacy is the right you have as an individual to understand how your data is collected, used, or shared .

Some of these data include full name, phone number, home address, location, password, health information, and bank information ( bank verification number, card number……).

Why is Data Privacy Important?

Privacy is considered a fundamental human right, and data protection laws exist to guard that right. In order for individuals to be willing to engage online and do business with you, they have to trust that their personal data will be handled with care.

Data breaches can cost up to $3.92 million to fix, but this may easily be resolved by having some privacy regulations .

As a user, data privacy affect you as well. Companies might need your personal data in order to offer their best products – but if your private data ends up in the wrong hands, this can cause you a lot of trouble. This should make you think twice before you hit “Accept Cookies.”

“Privacy is important and will continue to be so. It is critical to understand the laws as well as the potential risks associated with data processing. It is also critical to be aware of the steps you can take to protect your data, such as using privacy-preserving tools, among other things.” – Ridwan Oloyede, Partner at Tech Hive Avisory

Data Privacy vs. Data Security

The lines can blur between Data Privacy and Data Security. The difference between these terms can be blurry. Data Privacy deals with the proper handling of sensitive/personal data It governs how personal data is collected, shared or used. On the other hand, Data security is the practice of safeguarding digital information from unauthorized access, accidental loss, disclosure and modification, manipulation or corruption throughout its entire lifecycle, from creation to destruction.

Regulations and Legislations Governing Data Privacy and Protection

Data Privacy Regulations help to specify how data should be collected, stored, and shared with a third party. These are a few regulations that govern Data Privacy:

  1. Kenya Data Protection (General) Regulations, 2021: These regulations set out the procedures for enforcement of the rights of the data subjects as well as elaborating on the duties and obligations of Data Controllers and Data Processors
  2. The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR): GDPR can be considered as the world’s strongest set of data protection rules, which enhance how people can access information about them and places limits on what organizations can do with personal data.
  3. The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA): The California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (CCPA) gives consumers more control over the personal information that businesses collect about them
  4. The Nigerian Data Protection Regulation (NDPR): This provides the citizens with the right and control over their personal data, to ask what it is being used for, how it is being handled, and what has been shared with the third party.

Ways to Mange Data Privacy as a User and/or Business

Knowing that Data Privacy is highly important to an individual and to a business, the following ways can help you manage data privacy;

  1. As a user , understand how your data is been used e.g When installing applications which involves sensitive and personal information, go through end-user agreement and understand how your data will be used before accepting.
  2. Secure your accounts; This involves using complex passwords and enabling multifactor authentications.
  3. Change your password when you are notified of a data breach.
  4. As a business, classify and prioritize your data, that way you can attach the needed importance to the right data. This can help in maximizing your privacy program.
  5. Determine which data privacy regulations/law applies to your business
  6. Minimize data collections and be open with your users.
  7. Develop a data privacy policy for your organization or business.

Data protection is a business enabler for responsible innovation, and both public and private institutions can benefit from doing it correctly. Beyond data protection, ethics is an issue; it is not enough that it is not illegal; is it the right thing to do?
I also understand that ethics is relative.
We need a proper data protection law that ensures the regulator’s independence. The regulator must understand the task at hand, upskill, support compliance through self-assessment toolkits and guidance, ensure greater transparency through a timely complaint resolution process, and enforce the law.
Businesses must see the value in investing in a privacy programme, developing a responsible business model, and adhering to data protection laws.
For data subjects, know your rights, use your rights, and ask questions. – Ridwan Oloyede, Partner at Tech Hive Avisory


Gloria Olu-Ogunkeye is a cybersecurity student and a freelance content writer .

Henrietta Ijenebe is a cybersecurity content writer at CyberSecFill.

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