How to Apply Data Minimization to Your Business

How to Apply Data Minimization to Your Business

What best describes the concept of data minimization?

The principle of data minimization involves limiting data collection to “only what is required to fulfill a specific purpose.” An organization applying the concept of data minimization will perform any analysis using the least amount of data possible and will use data only for the purpose it was obtained.

If you are considering how to apply data minimization to your business, you need a comprehensive implementation plan that includes these four key principles.


1. Narrow data collection

Determining what data is absolutely necessary is the first step in a successful data minimization strategy. Businesses must narrow their data-gathering techniques to the point where only the most valuable information


2. User verification and screening

Many bulk data collection workflows function on the assumption that the vast majority of users submit usable, relevant information that they own. In reality, this is not the case.

Many businesses, from startups to multinationals, unintentionally collect large amounts of dangerous data. It could be fraudulent or unconditioned, and thus generates risk for everyone involved simply by sitting in company servers. Strong data minimization plans create user verification and screening processes to weed out such data. For instance, a rideshare company with such tools in place would be able to catch an applicant with a violent criminal conviction attempting to submit someone else’s personal details. With these initial assessment procedures in place, organizations will gather only usable information from verified sources.


3. Progressive data management

User data eventually goes stale, yet many organizations do not take this into account, which results in databases stuffed with unusable or incorrect information. This not only saves the business time and money in the long run but continues to mitigate the risk that inevitably comes as the amount of user data increases.


4. Strategic deletion

Strategic data erasure is a core component of the data minimization methodology. User information has a lifespan, and this has never been more true than in today’s fast-moving digital marketplace. Businesses must consistently purge stale data from servers to ensure the information they access is truly valuable and does not pose a security threat. As a result, all data minimization plans should include deletion protocols.


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