82 Meetings & Conventions • mcmag.com March 2018
Everyone involved in the production of an event should be practicing
smart data security protocols. From the experts, a few tips on how not to
be data delinquent in the wake of GDPR:
• Review and modify registration and consent forms, not just for GDPR
compliance but the kinds of questions asked of attendees. Some
personal information is necessary, i.e., emergency contacts, food
allergies, but perhaps not all.
• Working with several different event technology platforms can increase
the risk of a data breach (“Data security is weakest at the point of
transfer,” notes Shane Edmonds, CTO, etouches). Consider using one
global platform supported by a GDPR-compliant vendor.
• Train your staff on GDPR and any new data protection procedures and
• Don’t email unsecure spreadsheets or lists with personal data. Make
sure to encrypt.
• Be aware of who has access to attendee and other sensitive data. Know
who touches that data during an event’s lifecycle.
• Don’t leave printouts unattended either in the office or onsite.
of individuals will succeed in building
new levels of trust. And this will be key in
deciding which organizations people will
choose to deal with in the future.”
Despite the EU’s May 25th enforcement deadline,
GDPR awareness in the U.S. remains all over the board and can depend
on organizational size and global exposure.
“Everyone is at a different level depending on whether you are a large
corporation, and you have someone dedicated towards that. If you are a
smaller operation, you probably don’t have somebody, and you’ll probably
have a difficult time understanding what the regulations mean and how
it impacts you,” says Jerry Murphy, VP, customer experience at Creative
Group, a meeting, incentive, and recognition company in Schaumburg, Ill.
However, GDPR compliance and responsible data stewardship are not
the sole domains of a tech vendor or legal department. Everyone in the
events chain must play a role, including you, third-party suppliers, who are
increasingly relied upon to execute meetings and events.
“This isn’t just a technology thing. It’s not a marketing thing. It needs
to be interwoven in how everyone views and uses data. Everyone has a
responsibility when it comes to protecting the data we are collecting from
clients or on a client’s behalf,” says Fattahian.
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