• What is a Privacy Policy?

    A privacy policy refers to an internal company policy that explains to stakeholders, clients or any other third parties including distributors, suppliers, consultants, and business partners, how personal information is managed, stored and processed. To make life easier, off the shelf privacy policy templates are often used by websites to stay aligned with a particular theme, but are one of the most important legal documents that any business can have about their online presence.

    As a data controller, it is mandatory for the business to draft a privacy policy with accurate information, which touches on both technical and informational aspects.
    A good privacy policy should be easy to understand and be explicit in how the information of the users will be processed and shared with any third-parties. Incorporating a dependable privacy policy template can save a company a great deal of misfortune.

    The Importance of a Privacy Policy

    Since the incorporation of the GDPR, a privacy policy is increasingly more important than ever before, and organisations are now required to ensure that their websites are compliant with the GDPR.

    The right to privacy and data protection is paramount and organisations are becoming more aware of the rights of individuals, especially since the GDPR. Businesses who store information are now obliged to state exactly how any personal information stored will be used and shared with third parties.

    Users whose personal data is being stored now have enhanced rights to demand that website owners remove any information stored about them that they are not comfortable with being stored. Businesses can make use of a privacy policy UK template to save time and modify it further as per specific requirements. With the help of a customised privacy policy generator service that allows organisations to share its policies and procedures about their services without having to create one from scratch.

    What, When and How in a Privacy Policy

    An organisation that does not already have in place a privacy policy is very likely to be non-compliant and in danger of receiving the wrath of the GDPR regulators. However, there is no excuse as there are privacy policy templates available to save time and money. Ensuring that the off the shelf privacy policy meets all the important aspects of the GDPR is tantamount and should be modified and amended to specific requirements.

    Decide on WHAT should be included in the privacy policy by evaluating and assessing the following:

    • The nature of the personal data to be collected and stored.
    • The purpose of collecting and storing the particular data.
    • The likely retention period of the data.
    • The number of data controllers and data processors handling the data.
    • The type of data.

    ✓ WHEN

    It is important to regularly update the privacy policy and the information therein if the activity involves:

    • The gathering of sensitive personal information.
    • The use of the information may be used to find unanticipated, unintended or objectionable data.
    • The information may unintentionally be shared with any third-party that users.

    ✓ HOW:

    It is important that businesses present their privacy policy by:

    • Using clear, transparent and easy to understand language.
    • Avoiding ambiguity in written content.
    • Adopting a clear strategy for communication between parties.
    • Avoiding the use of false or misleading information.
    • Maintaining sincerity and transparency.

    There are numerous aspects that need to be covered and adhered to in the process of developing a GDPR compliant privacy policy some of which are covered here.

    What is a Privacy Policy Template?

    A privacy policy template is a standard version that allows the users, companies, and businesses to draft the privacy policy just by adding their business-specific information.

    How do a Free Privacy Policy Template works?

    Businesses can add information under different headings provided in a free privacy policy template.

    Another option is to look at specific privacy policy generator software and automated processes on offer where all the basic information is usually present within these privacy policy templates. It is just a case of searching online for privacy policy template service providers and find one that suits the particular organisation. The normal process is to complete online fields with the company’s specific details, i.e. company name, address, email, contact number etc.

    Once fully completed the form is submitted and the privacy policy is created automatically. The fully customised privacy policy is then emailed to the organisation and can be used freely on the company website and shared with the company website users.

    Cost of Privacy Policy Templates

    Prices vary and mostly depends upon the nature of the privacy policy required. There is an incredible number of privacy policy generators online, and each will offer something different regarding actual privacy policies and prices.

    However, the very basic privacy policy would be in the region of £5, whereas a more detailed and complicated privacy policy might cost upwards of £50. Free privacy policies can be obtained which would be ideal for a startup or low budget company; there are a number of online resources offering free privacy policies.

    Privacy Policy Templates in the UK

    There are a number of policy generators offering templates for all sorts of company policies including privacy policy templates. However, for a country-specific privacy policy template such as the UK, it would be necessary to check that country for specific websites of online privacy policy template providers.

    It will be necessary to ensure that any templates purchased are compliant with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) requirements. It is certainly possible to discover a lot of privacy policy’s templates in the required country just by searching specific keywords.

    What is the GDPR compliant website Privacy Policy?

    The GDPR has created a whole range of privacy rights and protections to individuals and consequently any acquired policies are compelled by the regulations to be fully compliant.

    Therefore any data collected on a website and deemed personal information, i.e. names, addresses, email addresses contact information, etc. come under the regulations. The GDPR requires companies to be transparent as to what they do with this data, including explanations as to how data is gathered, how it is processed in an honest and trustworthy manner.

    Core points to be included in the GDPR compliant Privacy Policy:

    • A valid reason and explanation as to the purpose and legal basis of gathering and processing user data including all the legitimate interests of the data controller.
    • The actual source of the personal data.
    • Details of the users (categories of the data received such as name, email, contact information etc.)
    • Any countries to which the data is transmitted to or shared with along with security measures for the transference of the data. Also referred to as “approved transfer mechanisms”.
    • Retention period, i.e. the length of time for which the data will be stored and a definition of the criteria as to how and why the information is stored.
    • An explanation as to the rights of the data subjects as mentioned in the GDPR (including the right to erasure, right to rectification, right to object etc.).
    • Confirmation for the existence of claiming these rights by data subjects, this must be written in a clear language of how and what a data subject can do to claim his/her rights.
    • Confirmation of the right to withdraw consent within the privacy policy for the convenience of the data subject.
    • Contact and identification details of the data controllers, (if no data controller is assigned then contact information of the representative should be detailed).
    • Clear advise to the data subjects about “right to complain” to the Data Protection Authority.
    • Details about the legitimate interest conditions, if any.
    • Confirmation about automated decision making, e.g. profiling for example. Also, detail the reason behind such processes, and of what importance and consequence, it may hold.
    • Clarity regarding the personal data of the children, how the consent will be taken.
    • Explicitly state about the use of third-party website links.
    • Confirm the details regarding cookies, if used on your website. How it works and what information is extracted.
    • Any other relevant information should be detailed.

    ✓ Do I really need a privacy policy?

    A privacy policy is an integral part of any website. If you are operating your business within the EU and have clients, users or members in the EU, you must comply with EU online regulations to avoid violations of any laws or regulations.
    Your business needs a privacy policy’s to process your user’s data by keeping a transparent communication with your clients. Businesses can convey the information about customer’s private data protection processing through a well-formatted privacy policy.

    ✓ What the GDPR says about data protection?

    The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has 11 sections and 99 articles, and each article has a specific topic, which businesses need to look at. However, considering the protection of data subjects, the GDPR has specific articles that define the privacy of user’s information, such as:

    • Article 12 of the GDPR requires your business to maintain a reliable communication level for the processing of data in a way that is:
      • Transparent
      • Easy to understand
      • Concise and of clear language
      • Easily accessible
      • Free of charge
    • Most legal policies include technical and legal language, which makes it difficult to read for the non-technical audience/readers. The GDPR aims to avoid this.
    • Article 5 describes the specific principles that should be kept in mind while processing personal data of the users. It requires the companies to process data lawfully and fairly, should be adequate and relevant about the purpose with which it is collected.
    • Article 7 describes the conditions of consent, which a business should consider while taking consent from the users about data gathering and processing, along with the sharing of data with other third parties.
    • Article 24 briefly describes the responsibility of a data controller, where the data controller must explain the purposes of processing and evaluate the risks involved as per their intensity.

    ✓ What to do now?

    Organisations need to understand the importance of having a privacy policy. It is time that privacy policies should be taken as a base of client-user transparency and communication. However, it is important to understand that privacy policies along with other relevant policies will require continuous attention and changes with time.

    Update your website’s privacy policy’s either by using an automated privacy policy’s generator, a privacy policy’s template or a manually written privacy’s policy.
    GDPR compliance in your policy’s and other processes can save your business from hefty fines and penalties. To implement the necessary changes to comply with the GDPR, most businesses will need to have expert guidance, advanced technology and employee training.
    Ensure to review and revise your privacy policy as per the GDPR standards. Your business can hire a professional to draft your policies, considering how your business works and what information should be shared with the users considering the GDPR requirements. We also provide expert advice, GDPR consultation and guidance in drafting privacy policies. If you seek any help or guidance about privacy policy, then feel free to contact us.

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