Data privacy and protection requirements – obstacles or business enablers?

The global economy fuels constant growth in cross-border data flows. Yet, borders block trade in the cloud as well as on the ground. 

In 2002, e-commerce represented 19% of the total manufacturing revenue in the US. Ten years later, in 2012, its share of total revenue had increased to more than 50%[1]. 

For cross-border transactions, however, a complex patchwork of legal restrictions must be considered which currently hinders the same kind of uptake. The Financial Services in the US saw a 5.2% increase in cross-border trade between 2013 and 2014[2]. Yet, data privacy and protection requirements are seen as a problem according to a survey conducted on behalf of the US International Trade Commission (USITC) last year[3]:

b2ap3 thumbnail Cross-Border-Impact

Twenty-three percent of large firms and 21% of SMEs in the financial sector perceived data privacy and protection requirements to be a “substantial or very substantial” obstacle. And the problem is by no means isolated to the Financial Services only, as the USITC calculations show.

These figures resonate with what the Axiomatics Customer Relations Team hears at customer sites. Especially within Financial Services, clients are looking to find creative solutions to help overcome their data privacy and protection challenges. The ideal solution is to be flexible enough so as to easily adapt as new regulations are introduced.

One such solution is to encrypt all the data in your database to ensure you never will have a breach – even if someone steals the entire database. Then use fine-grained Attribute Based Access Control (ABAC) to determine exactly in which situation a given user should be allowed to see the decrypted data. Controlling the encryption / decryption actions in real-time, via policy-driven access control, means you can change or add policies as requirements change and rest assured you always remain compliant. 

You can read more about these types of use cases and scenarios on the Axiomatics web site – https://www.axiomatics.com/cross-border-privacy 

With a solution that includes an ABAC approach and database encryption in place, overcoming the obstacle of complying with a new regulation has become a lot easier. As a result, what used to be an hindrance or obstacle becomes a competitive advantage, since these organizations can do business in zones which competitors find difficult to cover.

[1] UNITED NATIONS CONFERENCE ON TRADE AND DEVELOPMENT, INFORMATION ECONOMY REPORT 2015http://unctad.org/en/PublicationsLibrary/ier2015overview_en.pdf

[2] United States International Trade Commission, Recent Trends in U.S. Services Trade: 2015 Annual Report, the  (http://www.usitc.gov/publications/332/pub4526.pdf)

[3] United States International Trade Commission, Digital Trade in the U.S. and Global Economies, Part 2, August 2014, Publication Number: 4485 Investigation Number: 332-540

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