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Agents urged to prepare for EU data protection rule changes

An audit and tax consultancy is urging estate agencies across the UK to prepare for new EU General Data Protection Regulation changes which come into effect in just under a year’s time.

The regulations are likely to apply even though the UK will by then be part-way through the Brexit negotiations.

The RSM consultancy says the new legal framework, which takes effect on May 26 2018, is the biggest change to data privacy legislation in over two decades and aims to protect EU citizen’s personal data, regardless of borders or where the data is processed.

“The regulations will transform how agents store and manage personal data. A failure to comply with the new rules could see businesses facing significant penalties of up to €20m, or four per cent of annual global turnover” says a statement from the consultancy."

It says it is key that agency data procedures protect the rights of individuals. 

“Therefore an organised data protection programme will need to be established, with all data activities accurately recorded. This obligation extends to any third-party contractors or partners working with a business, and will present real estate companies with much greater legal liability in the event of error” says the consultancy.

“The new framework will drastically affect the future of stored personal data and increase company accountability. Such a transformation is likely to disrupt internal data practices within organisations. Businesses must make sure they are ready for what lies ahead and not get caught out, as the financial and reputational risk could be significant” RSM warns.

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