Privacy Policy Review

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What Is a Privacy Policy Review?

A privacy policy review is a comprehensive review of a company’s privacy policy and privacy agreement.

The privacy policy is a legal statement that describes how a company collects, handles, processes, protects, and respects its customers’ data.

Any company that collects data through its website, blogs, web applications, mobile applications, and desktop applications should regularly perform a privacy policy review.

Here is an article with a clear privacy policy definition.

How Often Should I Review My Privacy Policy?

It’s best to review your privacy policy and user agreement annually or after there are any significant updates to privacy protection and data laws in your jurisdiction.

In 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation, or GDPR, went into effect, prompting a mass review of privacy policies for companies throughout the EU. Today, the GDPR is one of the leading privacy regulatory organizations.

In the United States, several laws mandate privacy policies for any company that collects personal data from its consumers. These include:

  • California Online Privacy Protection Act (CalOPPA)
  • Children's Online Privacy Protection Act
  • Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act
  • Electronic Communications Privacy Act
  • Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act
  • Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act
  • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)

States can set their own rules regarding collecting, using, and protecting people’s personal data on an app or website. However, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regulates many privacy laws companies must comply with in their privacy policies and user agreements.

A company in America must consistently comply with federal and state laws at every level of operation.

Here is an article with more information on privacy policy laws in America and Europe.

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Why Should I Review My Privacy Policy?

You should perform an annual privacy policy review to ensure your current document reflects your company’s data collection and processing activities.

The data companies collect and what they do with it change significantly due to shifting needs. For example, suppose you start gathering data for marketing purposes and use it differently than you did in the past. In that case, your updated privacy policy should reflect these changes.

Companies need to ensure that their customers fully understand the following:

  • What data they gather from customers
  • How they use the data
  • W here the data is stored

E-commerce companies, for example, collect highly sensitive information, including customers’ full names and mailing addresses. Therefore, ensuring that their data is safe is a fundamental aspect of customer service.

You may also review the privacy policy if your terms and conditions change. All users should be notified of any updates you make and should be given the right to terminate their user agreement if they disagree with the amended version.

Here is an article about how often your business should review and update its privacy policies.

Who Can Review My Privacy Policy?

You can review your privacy policy in-house, or you may hire a lawyer to perform a more detailed privacy policy review. A contract attorney can ensure that your company’s privacy policy includes all the necessary legal terms and complies with applicable federal and state regulations.

You may also want to hire a lawyer to review your privacy policy according to legal timeframes. For example, in California, the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) requires all businesses that collect data to update their privacy policies at least once a year.

Here is an article with many articles on privacy policy updates.

What Should Be Included in a Privacy Policy?

Every privacy policy should include at the minimum:

  • Overview of customer data you collect : Specify which personal details and data your organization collects from its customers.
  • Data usage policies : An explanation of how your company uses its customers’ data.
  • Data storage and protection: Describe how your business stores its customers’ data and what measures are in place to prevent data theft or unauthorized access.
  • Your company’s information: Include contact information for your company, especially which parties to contact with questions or concerns about the privacy policy.
  • Use of tracking tools: You must disclose what tracking tools your company uses to collect users’ data, such as cookies and log files.
  • Opt-out option: You are legally required to give every user the right to opt-out of data collection, to receive a copy of the data you have, and to request the removal of their data from your company’s database.

These are the fundamental elements to include when researching how to write a privacy policy. You may have additional details based on your company’s industry, such as:

  • Information related to marketing
  • Third-party access
  • Frequently asked questions

Having a good privacy policy builds trust and promotes transparency with your audience. You should write your policy in clear, everyday language so that anyone who lands on your website or uses your application can fully understand how their data is collected and their rights.

If you are a new business, you can hire a contract lawyer to write your privacy policy and agreement for your end users. These can be highly nuanced documents in cases where customer data also includes data for other individuals.

Consider a marketing company that provides a SaaS solution for businesses. These companies store their customers’ data on the platform, meaning the marketing company has their customers’ data and thousands of other people’s information.

It’s important that your privacy policy fully covers your company and protects your customers. Writing a privacy policy using a free template may be enough based on your needs. However, many other businesses prefer to hire a lawyer to write their policy, which they can later review and update on their own.

Here is an article with more information on what to include in a privacy policy.

How Much Does a Lawyer Charge to Review a Privacy Policy?

The average privacy policy cost on ContractCounsel’s marketplace is $370.83. Prices will vary by attorney and the type of privacy policy your company requires.

Because you are legally obligated to have a privacy policy, relying on an experienced lawyer to write and amend yours is best.

If you need to incorporate significant changes to your privacy policy, working with a contract attorney is the best way to ensure you get the most accurate and appropriate privacy policy for your customers.

A privacy policy review will cost the lawyer’s hourly rate, which tends to be between $250 to $350 an hour. In addition, you will have to pay additional costs if you want the attorney to draft a revised policy and user agreement.

Here is an article that reviews the cost of a privacy policy in 2022.

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