Satya Nadella and “Trust in Technology”

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella digressed from standard earnings call topics two weeks ago to discuss the importance of ethics, privacy, and cybersecurity.  While he did not provide a specific reason for the digression, the Facebook hearings and impending GDPR implementation were likely motivators.

Nadella noted that the intelligent cloud and intelligent edge are “tremendous opportunities” for Microsoft customers, but that it is critical that both Microsoft and its customers “ensure trust in technology” across three dimensions: privacy, cybersecurity, and ethics. Nadella argued that “privacy is a fundamental human right” and that the firm has implemented an “end-to-end privacy architecture” which is GDPR compliant.

“For customers, we will provide robust tools backed by our contractual commitments to help them comply with GDPR,” said Nadella. “In fact, for most customers it will be more effective and less costly to host their data in Microsoft’s GDPR-compliant cloud than to develop and maintain GDPR compliance tools themselves.”

With respect to cybersecurity, the company spearheaded a coalition of 34 global tech and security companies for the Cybersecurity Tech Accord, “an important first step by the industry to help create a safer and more secure online environment for everyone.”

Nadella also announced the establishment of an AI and Ethics in Engineering and Research Committee at Microsoft “to ensure we always advance AI in an ethical and responsible way to benefit our customers and the broader society. This includes new investments in technology to detect and address bias in AI systems. Microsoft stands for trust, and this will continue to be a differentiating focus for us moving forward.”

Up until recently, information technology and social media have been viewed as social goods with few drawbacks, but now that we are all tied into the social communications fabric, we are beginning to worry about the dark side of such connectivity whether it be job losses through automation, the stripping away of privacy, the vulnerability of our networks to hacks, or the undermining of objective truth and democratic systems.

One step towards addressing these problems is the GDPR Chief Privacy Officer requirement with its focus on privacy and cybersecurity.  At most companies, this role is likely to be one of compliance, not ethics or broader social questions.  At a few, however, this role may grow beyond mere compliance and begin to address the broader social and economic issues posed by information technology.

 

Rhetorik Extends its UK/Irish NetFinder Service

Job Function Searching in Rhetorik NetFinder
Job Function Searching in Rhetorik NetFinder

UK Technology Sales Intelligence vendor Rhetorik released an enhanced version of its UK and Irish NetFinder service. The revised edition covers over 40,000 corporate and public-sector sites. The service doubled its technology buyers to 215,000 and increased its technology coverage five-fold including enhanced install data on cloud, enterprise and vertical industry applications, system software and middleware applications.

The Rhetorik database tags over 10,000 products from 6,000 vendors and maintains over 150 technology categories. Data coverage spans 164 biographic, firmographic, and technographic variables including email, phone, revenue, employees, line of business, and site-level technographics. All contacts are GDPR compliant and 92% contain emails.

“Rhetorik has adapted its policies and procedures to upgrade DPA regulatory standards to meet GDPR requirements,” said the firm. “While monitoring closely progress on the e-Privacy legislation, Rhetorik follows best-practice processes as set by PECR – Privacy and Electronic Communication Regulation. We have implemented clear and easy to follow procedures for individuals to be informed and manage their own Business Card Data. We keep access to all B2B information secure and protected.”

Data is gathered through a combination of automated means and editorial research.

Over the past year, Rhetorik has partnered with the European Market Intelligence Group (EMIG) and CNCData to provide European and AsiaPac coverage. The EMIG coverage spans 14 countries, 180,000 companies, and one million contacts. The CNCData partnership delivers over two million contacts and 1.2 million companies across 23 AsiaPac countries.

Rhetorik, which has provided technology intelligence for over two decades, underwent a management buy-out last summer. At the time, CEO Meredith Amdur, set a goal of expanding their “data gathering and analytics capabilities to create new products for technology sales and marketing professionals worldwide.”

GDPR Sales Tips

I came across some excellent tips from Johnty Mongan, Managing Director of The Mongan Group concerning the new European sales environment post-GDPR.  Selling in Europe will be trickier in May as reps need to obtain opt-in approval

Mongan provided the following advice:

GDPR is about protecting our interests from unlawful behaviour. GDPR removes the unwanted cold calls, email campaigns and any other processing that we haven’t agreed to. A transparent and fair existence for all. I really like it, it fits with my karmic views of the world.

It won’t how ever stop marketing activities through publicly available information, like a company email or a company number…

It’s time to go old school… here’s what you can do to reach new customers in a lawful and GDPR way:

  • Get consent from current customers to continue marketing to them. Do it in an engaging way. That’s a must.
  • Provide explicit consent of your intentions to all new prospects when luring them in with shiny content. For example, download this form so I can phone you. That’s a must.
  • Go to the events your customers go to, get over yourself and introduce yourself.  That’s a must.
  • Hold your own events.
  • Get more business cards…. they are not as useless as you may think.
  • Offer referral schemes to current customers. You should do that anyway.
  • Market your services within ethical channels. Where you customers go, you go

My list goes on, but it all centres around building clear authentic relationships. This is a good thing because most “sales” are won on the back of authenticity and trust. I see leading the charge with GDPR compliant sales processes a fantastic way to demonstrate your intentions.

So basically, what’s old is new again.  While marketing needs to be particularly attuned to GDPR, sales reps also need obtain permission.

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Openprise GDPR Compliance

Openprise provides fine-grained data filters and permission roles
Openprise provides fine-grained data filters and permission roles

Data automation vendor Openprise announced support for the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which goes into effect on May 25th.  The new Openprise Data Orchestration Platform capabilities provide “visibility, control, and access management inside and outside of a company, without the added complexity of traditional compliance solutions.”

The GDPR specific functionality “controls the flow of EU data out of your company” via “fine-grained data filters and permission roles,” and flags leads and contacts which are subject to the GDPR even if the records lack country flags.  The firm performs checks based upon emails, IP addresses, phone numbers, and non-standardized country fields.  Both standard and custom fields in sales and marketing automation platforms are GDPR validated.  Openprise maintains an audit trail and logs records which have been processed by partners.

The firm noted a Catch-22 in GDPR regulations.  Enriching records that lack country designators may require enrichment from non-compliant datasets, violating the law.  By utilizing data from within the record (e.g. domain, phone numbers), Openprise avoids violating the law in order to support the law.

“The vast majority of US-based companies are woefully unprepared for GDPR, and this new set of regulations has teeth.  We’ve heard from our customers that they want a central control point to help maintain compliance with GDPR.  Openprise’s position in the MarTech stack as the conductor that manages the movement and processing of data across systems puts it in a unique position to serve as this control point.”

  • Openprise CEO Ed King

The GDPR is broadly written to cover data held by non-EU companies, even those without operations or sales staff within the EU.  Penalties can be quite high, reaching up to 4% of revenue or €20 million, whichever is greater.

“What’s so critical about GDPR is that it affects companies everywhere in the world, whether they have a presence in the EU or not, and unlike many other regulations, this one has teeth,” says Allen Pogorzelski, vice president of marketing at Openprise. “If you’ve got EU citizen data in your databases, you’re subject to GDPR regulations. U.S. companies that ignore these regulations do so at their own peril.”

This summer, Openprise launched a Data Marketplace to assist with ingesting and normalizing third-party B2B and B2C data.  Amongst the platforms supported are Salesforce, Marketo, Eloqua, and Pardot.  The Data Marketplace, part of the Openprise Data Orchestration platform, includes built-in rules to ensure data are properly onboarded.  B2B Partners include Zoominfo, InsideView, Orb Intelligence, Synthio, Salesgenie, and Dun & Bradstreet.

Are you ready for EU GDPR Compliance?

On May 25, 2018 the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) goes into effect, creating data privacy and security concerns for firms both inside and outside of the EU.  The GDPR covers both companies that provide goods and services to EU residents and those that are part of the value chain.  The regulation covers all individuals domiciled within the EU, regardless of where the company is headquartered.

According to Forrester, the regulation has five key requirements:

  • If a firm has “regular, systemic collection or storage of sensitive data,” they need to hire or designate a Data Protection Officer (DPO).  The function may be filled by individuals with legal, privacy, security, marketing, or customer experience.  The International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP) estimates that the regulation will require 30,000 privacy officers.  The DPO will need to work with security leaders with respect to identity and access management (IAM) and encryption.  They will also be involved in purchasing decisions around CRM, analytics, and other platforms.
  • Should a data breach occur, firms have a-72 hour window for reporting breach details to the authorities and customers.  The window begins as soon as the breach is detected.
  • Privacy must be built into any new projects with a “Privacy-by-design” philosophy.  Forrester stated that “sustained collaboration between teams will be critical, so firms will have to establish new processes to encourage, enforce, and oversee it.” For example, privacy officers will need to review business requirements and development plans related to new apps.
  • Extraterritoriality places requirements on firms outside of the EU, making it a global requirement.  Forrester notes that “a US-based data aggregator that collects and resells EU customers’ data to other business partners will need to comply fully with GDPR requirements, rather than simply meeting international data transfer rules.”
  • Firms will be responsible not only for securing data but providing evidence that they have implemented appropriate risk mitigation.  Thus, a firm can be held in violation even if they have not had customer complaints or data breaches.

US companies are still obligated to comply with the 2016 Privacy Shield agreement between the US and EU.  Forrester also warned UK firms to comply with the GDPR as lowering British privacy standards would only serve to complicate UK-EU data transfer rules post Brexit.

Forrester suggested that firms take a cost-benefit analysis to data instead of simply storing everything:

“Firms will learn to better assess the costs and benefits of records they process, store, and protect. They will progressively focus on collecting, buying, processing, storing, and protecting only the data that offers them the most value and will kill the rest.”

Forrester also suggested that privacy should be part of a firm’s DNA and some firms will integrate privacy into brand perception and the customer experience, providing a basis for competitive advantage.

Osterman Research conducted a survey of mid to large companies subject to the law to identify technology expenditure increases for GDPR compliance.

GDPR compliance expenditure increases (January 2017)
GDPR compliance expenditure increases (January 2017)

GDPR non-compliance costs are potentially very high with penalties up to the greater of €20 million or 4% of total worldwide annual turnover of the preceding financial year.