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The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a legal framework that sets guidelines for collecting and processing personal information from individuals in the European Union (EU). The regulation applies regardless of where a website is based, so it’s important to follow this framework, even if you don’t specifically market your goods and services to EU residents. 

Not only should your website be in compliance with the GDPR but also so should your database. Here are five ways to make sure that your database is GDPR compliant. 

1. Create and Enforce Roles and Permissions 

By defining roles and permissions in advance, you can prevent unauthorized access to sensitive information. This is a smart move you’ll want to make anyway, as it can prevent catastrophic errors and the loss of data. Start thinking about who in your organization will be allowed to make changes to data, data structure, tables and schemas. 

2. Encrypt Sensitive Information 

Encryption lets you protect the data you send, receive and store, regardless of the device you are using. If the information does get into the hands of a cybercriminal, the encryption will make it impossible for them to read it. 

Again, this is a smart practice to follow, as data is continuously passed back and forth between environments. To maintain privacy and protection for individuals, you’ll want to encrypt all sensitive information. 

3. Create an Audit History 

Keeping track of who did what and why is important for compliance and business management. You should have a complete history of all the changes made to your data structure. This will help you maintain security, enforce accountability and detect potential causes of errors. And, if you are ever audited by EU officials, this audit will help you pass. 

4. Set Alerts for Breach Attempts 

When you have roles and permissions accurately set, it will prevent unauthorized users from accessing your sensitive data. But you can take things a step further by using tools to alert you when attempts are made (and denied). These alerts will raise immediate attention to suspected malicious activity or security breaches. 

5. Prevent Data Loss 

Lastly, you’ll want to maintain the integrity of your sensitive information. This is just as important as following the proper security measures for collecting and storing the data. Make sure you are taking every step to prevent the accidental destruction, loss or alteration of personal data. You can use a tool that will alert you if any configuration drifts are detected. 

These five tips will help you maintain a secure and GDPR-compliant database. For more information on which database platforms are naturally compliant, contact Arkware for a recommendation.