Information Governance And Compliance

INTRODUCTION

Information is the way in which information is used and managed. It’s an important practice which seeks to limit the risks involved in the management of data and ensure compliance.

Good information governance begins with an examination into how information is gathered and how data is kept, both digitally and on paper. Information governance also covers how this data is stored, and the ways in which a company intends to use the data. The sharing of data is also crucial, particularly with rules and regulations concerning the use of data becoming more robust

Information governance practices often involve the use of information governance software, which aids businesses as they seek to manage their information in the best possible ways, make full use of all available data and comply with all current data regulations

Information governance recognizes information as a strategic asset that must be subjected to high-level coordination and oversight. This ensures accountability, integrity, preservation, and protection of information enterprise-wide, and as a disciplined aims to treat the task holistically by removing silos and fragmentation, improving ROI on the technology and resources needed to manage information.

Why is Information Governance Important?

Information governance (or Information Management and Governance – see above) is an emerging discipline so there is still some debate around the role it plays in the enterprise. Nevertheless, a well-implemented information governance program should yield the following benefits for the business at the minimum.

Companies are aware that poor information management and non-compliance carry heavy penalties and can lead to lost business and reputation, financial penalties and even prison sentences.

In some industries, failing an auditor’s inspection can lead to an organisation operations being suspended until corrective action is taken. Today, an organisation doesn’t just need to comply, it must be seen to comply.

Achieving compliance requires the execution of best practices without error as well as proving that the organisation has done this through accurate information.

The Benefits of ‘Active Compliance

Companies are aware that poor information management and non-compliance carry heavy penalties and can lead to lost business and reputation, financial penalties and even prison sentences.

In some industries, failing an auditor’s inspection can lead to an organisation’s operations being suspended until corrective action is taken. Today, an organisation doesn’t just need to comply, it must be seen to comply.

Achieving compliance requires the execution of best practices without error as well as proving that the organisation has done this through accurate information.

The processes of automation and standardisation inherent in a Information Governance programme do not just drive down costs, they can also identify areas of compliance where small gains in business performance can deliver stronger market performance.

A great deal of the business value of Information Governance is derived from getting the right information, to the right people, at the right time. Just as important, however, is stopping the wrong information, going to the wrong people, at the wrong time.

High profile examples of the loss of personal data by government, healthcare and commercial organisations abound and demonstrate the reputational and financial damage that can occur.

Any Information Governance programme should ensure that the Information Security element includes:

Information Governance and Information Security

It should be clear that the Information Security element of Information Governance is essentially about finding the correct balance between accessibility and confidentiality. It has to set out how, where and when information can be deployed while keeping it fully protected, securely stored and defensibly deleted.

Information Governance should ensure the following for Information Security:

  • Develop a robust framework for handling information in a confidential and secure manner
  • Ensure that information security and privacy policies meet all relevant Data Protection and Freedom of Information legislation
  • Ensure information is processed legally, securely, efficiently and consistently to the highest standards
  • Ensure security policies cover not only information and associated applications, but also the physical devices users employ to access  information
  • Ensure all employees fully understand, and have been trained on the organisation’s information security policies and procedures
  • Ensure that information security extends beyond the organisation to encompass the organisation’s partners, suppliers and contractors.

How is information governance integral to success?

Information governance is an enterprise’s strategic approach to managing its information, whether in digital data, documents, or archival records, in order to support business outcomes.

It can involve a wide range of cross-disciplinary policies, procedures, controls, tools, and technologies that help a company meet regulatory, legal, and operational demands.

By balancing the proper use of data and information against regulatory and security demands, information governance software can:

  • Maximize the value of that data to the company
  • Enable legal compliance and risk mitigation
  • Enhance operational transparency
  • Reduce likelihood, instances, and costs of legal discovery and  regulatory penalty.

Laws, regulations and principles

Information governance isn’t just a matter of best practices; it is a matter of regulation in and of itself because it is so deeply intertwined with security, privacy and compliance concerns.

As technological innovations continue to expand business capabilities and corporate data volumes grow, regulations that put strict mandates on information governance processes have become the norm. This is especially true for data privacy and security, as personally identifiable information (PII) has become a big target for hackers and nefarious online actors. Privacy laws, such as the European Union’s Data Protection Directive, have started to expand in countries all over the world and create new information security (infosec) governance obligations for companies.

Many industries, including highly regulated sectors, such as energy and financial services, are subject to regulations that require records and electronic communications be retained for a minimum period of time. These regulations include mandates from federal agencies, such as the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Department of Justice (DOJ) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), regarding response times for information requests. Regulatory reporting requirements also often mandate that companies provide an account of compliance, usually in the form of raw or summary data, with set frequency, such as annually.

Aishwarya Says:

I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.

If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.

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The copyright of this Article belongs exclusively to Ms. Aishwarya Sandeep. Reproduction of the same, without permission will amount to Copyright Infringement. Appropriate Legal Action under the Indian Laws will be taken.

If you would also like to contribute to my website, then do share your articles or poems at adv.aishwaryasandeep@gmail.com

We also have a Facebook Group Restarter Moms for Mothers or Women who would like to rejoin their careers post a career break or women who are enterpreneurs.

We are also running a series Inspirational Women from January 2021 to March 31,2021, featuring around 1000 stories about Indian Women, who changed the world. #choosetochallenge

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