Talking Governance With Emily Hill, Qualsys

What is compliance technology? And how can innovation be used to deliver good governance? A representative of the software company Qualsys, providers of a business management solution with governance, risk and compliance (GRC) at its core, has explored these topics and many more.

Marketing Manager Emily Hill, speaking during a ProfileTree video interview, explained that content marketing has been a key part of the Qualsys success story and explained why software to help keep track of compliance can be a smart investment.

What is compliance technology?

Quality, Risk & Compliance Technology | Talking Governance, Content Marketing & GDPR With Emily Hill

“Qualsys is a governance, risk and compliance software company working with lots of big brands like Honeywell, BT and Sodexo to help them to get all of their procedures and processes managed in a central system.

“It’s really important in massive businesses that everyone has access to the right, up to date information to make sure they are compliant with lots of different industry standards and regulations.”

Compliance Technology with Emily Hill

Despite having global giants including Diageo among its customer list, Qualsys also offers smaller companies a way to manage quality within their businesses.

“One of the big problems with quality is that it is associated with a lot of negative things like being a bit overbearing or micromanaging or telling everyone to stop doing things.

“It can be seen as a barrier to getting business done.

“In Qualsys our work is around trying to change that perception, so when people use quality it’s natural and part of their everyday business.”

One of the rewards of working smarter? A reduction in paperwork and greater efficiency.

“A lot of companies are either using outdated legacy systems or single-use applications. This system isn’t about getting every single document in the company on it, it’s about the important ones which need to be controlled and are critical to getting business done properly.”

Emily used the example of the medical device and life sciences sectors.

“If a document is out of date or a standard operating procedure is not right that has really serious consequences.

“We do a lot of work with medical device start-ups to get everything there at the start of the process, it’s really crucial for getting their product to market.”

What approach does the company take to selling software?

“Our strategy is basically is to be the expert in the industry, we do similar things to what ProfileTree do by interviewing industry experts and sharing their knowledge.

“We’ve already created an online community, we have about 20,000 people signed up for our newsletter. We use that to start a conversation.

“We use Hubspot to send out newsletters and emails and we have landing pages. We do a lot of content on changing standards and regulations. There’s a revised standard that’s just come out and it’s all about auditing management systems, we’ve produced lots of content on the changes to the standard and how our software can help with that.”

GDPR has, of course, made the demand for Qualsys software even greater.

“We ran four training courses at our office on GDPR to say ‘look, we’re the experts, come to us’. It was really, really interesting.

“One of the main things was that a lot of companies had a lot of their processes in place, it was saying that you don’t have to do some things that others told you that you need to do.

“It’s just minor changes, how you ask permission and that kind of thing. You don’t have to go and delete every bit of data.”

How successful has content marketing been for Qualsys?

“Content marketing is the main part of our strategy. We go to lots of industry events and do write-ups about what’s happening in our industry.

“We use that content to share with other people who don’t have our kind of budget.”

To discover more insights from Emily Hill see our full video interview.

Qualsys –

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Compliance Technology’s Role in Data Privacy and Protection

In a world where data is the new currency, safeguarding it has become a paramount concern for businesses across industries. Compliance technology plays a crucial role in erecting a fortress around sensitive information, ensuring privacy, building trust, and mitigating risk. Here’s how it addresses key aspects:

Encryption: Digital Lock and Key

  • Shielding at Rest and in Transit: Compliance tech employs robust encryption algorithms to transform sensitive data into indecipherable code, protecting it both when stored and during transmission.
  • Safeguarding Data Integrity: Encryption verifies data authenticity, ensuring it hasn’t been tampered with by unauthorized parties, upholding its reliability and credibility.
  • Compliance Enforcer: Regulatory mandates like GDPR and CCPA often necessitate encryption for sensitive data, and compliance tech ensures adherence to these standards.

Access Controls: Guardians of the Data Gates

  • Defining Data Domains: Compliance tech establishes clear boundaries, defining who can access what data, when, and under what circumstances.
  • Role-Based Permissions: It assigns access privileges based on user roles and responsibilities, minimizing unnecessary exposure and preventing unauthorized access.
  • Audit Trails and Accountability: Every data access attempt is meticulously tracked, creating an audit trail that aids in identifying potential breaches and holding individuals accountable for their actions.

Anonymization and Pseudonymization: Masking Identities

  • Protecting Privacy, Preserving Insights: Compliance tech can strip away personally identifiable information (PII) while retaining data utility for analysis and research.
  • Anonymization: It completely severs the link between data and individuals, ensuring anonymity.
  • Pseudonymization: It replaces PII with artificial identifiers, allowing for data linkage while protecting true identities.

Geographic Data Handling Policies: Navigating Global Regulations

  • Cross-Border Compliance: Compliance tech aids in navigating the labyrinth of international data privacy laws, ensuring data handling practices align with regional regulations like GDPR in Europe or CCPA in California.
  • Data Localization and Transfer: It manages restrictions on data storage and movement across borders, ensuring compliance with local data sovereignty laws.
  • Geo-Fencing and Access Controls: It can restrict data access based on geographic location, preventing unauthorized access from regions with stricter regulations.

Compliance Technology’s Unwavering Promise:

By effectively weaving these measures into your data management strategy, compliance technology empowers you to:

  • Safeguard sensitive information and build trust with customers and partners.
  • Mitigate the risk of data breaches and hefty non-compliance penalties.
  • Foster a culture of privacy and ethical data handling within your organization.
  • Adapt to the evolving landscape of data privacy regulations with agility.

Remember, in the digital age, data privacy isn’t just a compliance obligation—it’s a cornerstone of ethical business practices and a fundamental pillar of trust. Embrace compliance technology as your steadfast ally in protecting sensitive information, fostering responsible data stewardship, and navigating the ever-changing regulatory landscape with confidence.

Extending Your Compliance Reach: Mastering Third-Party and Vendor Oversight

The compliance responsibility doesn’t end at your company doorstep. In today’s interconnected world, the actions of your third-party partners and vendors can expose you to significant risks and regulatory breaches. Mastering third-party and vendor oversight is no longer optional – it’s a strategic imperative for any business serious about staying compliant and secure.

Extending the Compliance Umbrella:

  • Vendor Onboarding and Risk Assessments: Implement a rigorous onboarding process that includes thorough security and risk assessments of potential vendors. Evaluate their data security practices, regulatory compliance posture, and potential vulnerabilities.
  • Contractual Safeguards: Formalize compliance requirements and expectations in clear, detailed contracts. Include clauses covering data security, breach notification, audit rights, and termination protocols for non-compliance.
  • Continuous Monitoring and Audits: Don’t set it and forget it. Employ ongoing monitoring tools and conduct regular audits of your vendors’ compliance practices. This proactively identifies potential issues and ensures they remain accountable.

Security and Risk Assessments: Unveiling Potential Vulnerabilities

  • Data Security Deep Dive: Assess vendors’ data security protocols, including encryption practices, access controls, incident response plans, and vulnerability management systems.
  • Regulatory Fit Gap Analysis: Evaluate their compliance with relevant regulations and identify any potential gaps that could pose risks to your own compliance posture.
  • Cybersecurity Threat Landscape: Analyze their cybersecurity vulnerabilities and preparedness against evolving threats like phishing attacks, malware, and ransomware.

Ongoing Audits: A Vigilant Watchdog in Action

  • Regular Compliance Audits: Conduct periodic audits of your vendors’ practices, ensuring they’re adhering to contractual agreements and regulatory requirements.
  • Surprise Audits: Keep vendors on their toes by incorporating surprise audits into your program, uncovering potential lapses in compliance that might go unnoticed in scheduled assessments.
  • Penetration Testing and Red Teaming: Simulate cyberattacks to test your vendors’ security defenses and identify vulnerabilities that could be exploited by real-world threats.

Benefits of Effective Third-Party Oversight:

  • Mitigate Compliance Risks: Proactive oversight minimizes the risk of regulatory non-compliance stemming from vendor activities.
  • Enhanced Data Security: By ensuring your vendors have robust data security practices, you safeguard your own sensitive information and prevent breaches.
  • Boost Brand Reputation: Building a culture of strong third-party compliance safeguards your brand from the negative repercussions of vendor-related incidents.
  • Improved Business Partnerships: Collaborative communication and transparency create stronger, more reliable partnerships with trusted vendors.

Remember, your compliance journey transcends your own company walls. By prioritizing effective third-party and vendor oversight, you not only safeguard your own compliance, but also foster a strong, secure ecosystem of partner collaboration, building a resilient foundation for continued success.

Business Continuity Planning for the Unforeseen

In the ever-evolving business landscape, the only constant is change. While we strive for smooth operations, unexpected disruptions can lurk around the corner, threatening to throw our carefully crafted plans into disarray. This is where business continuity planning (BCP) steps in, acting as your compass in the storm, guiding your organization through unforeseen challenges and ensuring a swift and effective recovery. Let’s delve into the core elements of BCP, exploring how it equips you to navigate disruption with confidence:

Backup and Disaster Recovery: A Safety Net for Your Data

  • Data Fortress: Robust backup and disaster recovery (DR) solutions ensure your critical data is safeguarded against any event, from natural disasters to cyberattacks. Regular backups, data replication, and off-site storage create a safety net that allows you to restore operations quickly and minimize downtime.
  • Automated Recovery: Modern DR solutions automate recovery processes, minimizing human intervention and ensuring swift restoration of essential systems and services. This allows your team to focus on other critical aspects of the crisis response.
  • Testing and Validation: Regularly test your backup and DR plans to identify and address potential flaws. This ensures your safety net is strong and ready to catch you when unexpected events occur.

Crisis Simulation Testing: Preparing for the Unthinkable

  • Stress-Testing Your Systems: Conduct crisis simulations that mimic real-world disruptions, such as power outages, cyberattacks, or natural disasters. These simulations expose vulnerabilities in your BCP and identify areas for improvement.
  • Refining Your Response: By rehearsing your response to different scenarios, you can refine your communication protocols, delegate tasks effectively, and ensure everyone knows their role in the recovery process.
  • Building Resilience: Crisis simulations not only test your BCP but also build resilience within your organization. They foster a culture of preparedness and equip your team to handle unexpected challenges with confidence.

Incident Response Protocols: A Clear Path Forward in the Fog

  • Immediate Action Plan: Clearly defined incident response protocols provide a roadmap for your team to follow in the event of a disruption. These protocols outline initial communication channels, activation procedures for emergency teams, and steps to contain and mitigate the incident.
  • Communication Cadence: Establish clear communication channels and protocols to ensure everyone involved is kept informed and aligned during the crisis. This fosters trust and minimizes confusion in a high-pressure situation.
  • Post-Mortem Analysis: Once the dust settles, conduct a thorough post-mortem analysis to identify the root cause of the incident and learn valuable lessons. This helps you refine your BCP and prevent similar events from happening again.

Building a Resilient Future:

By implementing these core elements of BCP, you equip your organization with the tools and knowledge to not only survive disruptions but emerge stronger. Remember, BCP is an ongoing process, not a one-time event. Regularly review and update your plan to reflect changes in your business environment and evolving threats. By embracing a proactive approach to BCP, you transform uncertainty into opportunity, building a resilient future where your organization can weather any storm and thrive in the face of adversity.

Leveraging Emerging Technologies: Compliance in the Innovation Age

The compliance landscape is evolving faster than ever, propelled by innovations like blockchain, IoT, biometrics, and AI. By embracing these emerging technologies, you can not only streamline your compliance workflows but also gain a competitive edge. Here’s how:

Blockchain: Transparency Triumphant

  • Immutable Audit Trail: Say goodbye to paper trails and embrace the tamper-proof record keeping of blockchain. Every compliance action is immutably logged, increasing transparency and simplifying regulatory audits.
  • Smart Contracts for Simplified Compliance: Automate key compliance tasks with self-executing smart contracts. No more manual checks or paperwork – contracts automatically trigger actions like reporting or data access control when pre-defined conditions are met.
  • Supply Chain Security: Gain unprecedented visibility into your supply chain with blockchain-based track-and-trace solutions. Ensure ethical sourcing, combat counterfeiting, and demonstrate responsible resource management to regulators and consumers.

IoT Sensor Integration: Data-Driven Compliance

  • Real-Time Risk Monitoring: Utilize sensors and IoT devices to capture real-time data on compliance parameters like environmental compliance or equipment safety. Proactively identify potential issues and prevent violations before they occur.
  • Automated Reporting and Alerts: Automate data collection and reporting from your IoT network, eliminating manual tasks and ensuring timely, accurate compliance reporting.
  • Predictive Maintenance: Leverage AI and machine learning to analyze sensor data and predict equipment failures or safety hazards. This proactive approach helps you address potential compliance issues before they escalate.

Biometrics and Access Management: Security Reinvented

  • Multi-Factor Authentication: Ditch simple passwords for the enhanced security of biometric authentication. Fingerprint scans, facial recognition, and even voice recognition add an extra layer of security to sensitive data and systems.
  • Frictionless Access Control: Streamline access to physical and digital resources with biometric scanners. No more lost keys or forgotten passwords – authorized individuals gain instant access while unauthorized attempts are flagged immediately.
  • Enhanced Data Privacy: Biometric authentication reduces the need for storing sensitive PII like passwords, minimizing the risk of data breaches and identity theft.

Natural Language Processing: Text Analysis on Autopilot

  • Automated Policy & Contract Review: Use NLP to analyze contracts, policies, and regulatory documents, identifying potential risks or compliance gaps with lightning speed. This frees up valuable human resources for strategic tasks.
  • Real-Time Social Media Monitoring: Track brand mentions and customer sentiment across social media platforms, ensuring compliance with advertising regulations and proactively addressing potential PR crises.
  • Automated Data Extraction and Classification: Extract key compliance data from unstructured text documents like emails, reports, and chat logs, streamlining data collection and reporting processes.

Compliance Program Governance: Building a Sustainable Framework

While technology promises exciting possibilities, a robust governance framework is critical for long-term compliance success. Here are key elements to consider:

Committee Oversight: Establish a dedicated compliance committee or task force with representatives from across the organization. This ensures diverse perspectives and promotes accountability.

Policy Review Cadence: Regularly review and update your compliance policies and procedures to reflect evolving regulations and industry best practices. Aim for annual or bi-annual reviews, with interim updates as needed.

Budget Allocation: Dedicate adequate resources to your compliance program. This includes budget for technology investments, training programs, and hiring specialized personnel if needed.

Communication and Collaboration: Foster open communication channels and encourage collaboration between all stakeholders involved in your compliance program. Regular briefings, training sessions, and feedback mechanisms ensure everyone is aligned and equipped to contribute.

Performance Measurement and Auditing: Track the effectiveness of your compliance program through regular audits and performance metrics. This helps identify areas for improvement and demonstrates your commitment to continuous compliance excellence.

Remember, technology is a powerful tool, but it’s just one piece of the puzzle. By combining innovative solutions with a well-defined governance framework, you can build a resilient, sustainable compliance program that propels your organization towards a future of responsible, competitive success.

FAQ: Your Compliance Tech Toolkit Q&A

Q: Which compliance technology solutions are right for my industry?

A: Different industries face unique compliance challenges. Research specific technology designed for your sector, like healthcare data security platforms or finance AML software. Our case studies offer inspiration from various industries.

Q: How much does compliance technology cost?

A: Costs vary depending on features, scale, and implementation needs. Explore different options, consider cloud-based solutions for scalability, and remember the long-term return on investment in regulatory peace of mind and operational efficiency.

Q: Can I implement compliance technology on my own?

A: Many solutions offer user-friendly interfaces and implementation support. However, seeking guidance from specialists can ensure seamless integration and maximize your technology’s effectiveness.

Q: How can I stay ahead of emerging trends in compliance tech?

A: Follow industry publications, attend technology conferences, and explore resources like ours for insights into cutting-edge solutions like AI, blockchain, and cloud-based platforms.

Q: Where can I learn more about specific compliance challenges in my industry?

A: Regulatory bodies and industry associations often offer valuable resources and guidance on navigating your specific compliance landscape.

Conclusion: Embrace the Tech, Conquer Compliance

Compliance doesn’t have to be a burden. By embracing innovative technology and leveraging the insights in this article, you can transform your compliance journey from a paper-strewn obstacle course into a streamlined highway to success.

  • Unleash the power of AI: Automate tedious tasks, predict risks, and gain real-time compliance insights.
  • Harness the transparency of blockchain: Build trust, simplify audits, and create a secure audit trail.
  • Embrace the agility of cloud solutions: Access tools anywhere, scale seamlessly, and benefit from constant updates.
  • Stay ahead of the curve: Explore emerging trends and choose solutions that future-proof your compliance strategy.

Remember, successful compliance isn’t just about ticking boxes – it’s about embracing best practices, leveraging technology, and proactively managing risk. With the right tools and guidance, you can turn compliance from a compliance headache into a confident stride towards a secure and thriving future.

Now go forth and conquer the compliance landscape with the power of technology!

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