There is no doubt that South Africa’s data protection law POPIA has increased the importance of document security more than ever. The Protection of Personal Information Act focuses on how personal information is mandated and protected for consumers. For businesses of all sizes, this plays a vital role in how documents are stored, secured, and managed. Ultimately, the goal of POPIA is to provide peace of mind for all consumers where data is concerned. A number of conditions are required in order to achieve this, to ensure that companies are compliant in how they treat and protect various types of data that may be collected. This, in turn, helps to reduce the risk of identity theft and other serious data-related concerns. When it comes to document security, having a better understanding of POPIA is key to ensure that you are able to keep your documents secure at all times.
Understanding POPIA and How it Affects the Importance of Document Security
To help you better understand POPIA and its role in enhancing document security, we have prepared a short guide that outlines this law.
What is POPIA?
In short, POPIA is a data privacy and protection law that was first established in 2013 and is now compulsory for businesses of all sizes. This law protects personal information ranging from ID numbers and passport numbers all the way to banking account details, home, work or personal phone numbers, physical addresses, employment and salary history, and financial information.
What does POPIA not entail?
There is plenty of misunderstanding and misinformation doing the rounds on what POPIA entails. Some of the biggest myths surrounding this law include the following:
- Personal information cannot be processed at all in any way.
- POPIA is an IT issue and one that other departments don’t need to think about.
- You can go to jail for processing personal information illegally.
- You can store data outside of South Africa provided the data laws in the area are equal or higher to POPIA.
- POPIA means that cloud-based services cannot be used.
- This law applies only to private personal information and not public information, too.
- POPIA compliance can be certified to get around any legal requirements.
Why is POPIA important for document security?
Essentially, this law is important on many levels – especially when it comes to investing in solutions that protect your documents. Using outdated systems that do not offer any level of data protection can add to the problem, putting data at risk in the event of system failure, hacks, spyware or even stolen laptops. With a proper document solution in place, you have the best chance of keeping all documents secure. At the same time, you can also ensure POPIA compliance, further adding peace of mind.