Big Data

The Role of CIOs in 2021 and Beyond


All C-level executives have a thing in common – they foresee. In this hyperactive digital world wherein data is the most essential commodity, it is inevitable that a Chief-Information Officer (CIO) will focus on privacy compliance.

A CIO is a driving force for building a sustainable privacy program and pushes the organization in the digital landscape. However, data compliance and privacy management is a critical area. Any inefficiencies here would mean that the user data through the product is vulnerable to thefts.

In 2021, as the world prepares for the post-pandemic world, data generation is expected to increase at record rates. Therefore, CIOs must lead a plan to ensure data privacy compliance for this year and beyond. 

Ensuring Total Compliance of Data Privacy

Starting with GDPR, the line-up of data privacy laws has cracked down on digital services providers across the map. In fact, fines worth USD 63 million were issued to companies in the first year of GDPR. And that leaves the CIOs with an important task in hand – ensure total compliance of all data privacy laws for different countries. This is equally critical because any failure here could cause serious financial burdens to defaulters. 

Facebook, for example, incurred an overwhelming fine of USD 5 billion from FTC after failing to address customer concerns about data privacy. USD 5 billion is Facebook’s one-quarter of total annual profits. GDPR fines account for 4% of annual turnover while CCPA enforces payment of up to USD 750 per user affected by the breach. However, in severe cases, the cost could go up to USD 7500 per user. 

That being the scenario, CIOs should implement a system wherein all privacy compliance guidelines are met quickly and faultlessly. This includes scaling response protocols and preparing for the time & cost needed to respond to a customer query, the total number of expected customer queries and the resource readiness to execute the same.  

Since compliance with multiple regulations in different regions is complicated, organizations are also locking horns with a lack of knowledge base. This has led to the shutting down of many unprepared companies or raised unforeseen overhead costs and CIOs have to address it immediately. While developing an internal knowledge base is an organic process, associating with consulting services is the best possible solution in hand. 

An operational data fabric provider, in their recent blog about compliance management, introduced a solution that analyses customer data and delivers an automated response to all subject data requests. Easy to set up and completely customizable, such software collects customer data sets for DSAR fulfillment. For CIOs, it is a great tool since the dashboard enables instant creation of users, roles, workflows and the actions required to manage DSARs across organizational verticals and processes.  

Additionally, CIOs can make training an essential process for preparing for data privacy compliance at the organizational level through K2view. Therefore, workshops, guest lectures and certifications about all privacy compliance guidelines and their faultless implementation should be included.

Ensure real-time visibility of critical data

As organizations, we are in a race with rapidly expanding data. Those who lag in managing data a few days old are trailing in business by months. In the wake of the pandemic, the increasing reliance on digital solutions will only propel the volume of data in the upcoming months. The ability to capture & analyze real-time data with a focus on making key decisions is the biggest differentiator. CIOs therefore must begin with ensuring data science capabilities in the organization’s process hierarchy. At the top of it, they must hone their process expertise to decipher market trends through research & development. 

From incoming data sets to actionable insights, this is the holy grail of driving successful IT products & services. Today, the challenge is less about the system landscape infrastructure and more about the data streaming across. 

With certain compliance management solutions, CIOs gain an aerial view of the landscape and therefore ensure a single point of consent for the customers. Moreover, the ‘Right to be Forgotten’ and instant reporting of breaches provide utmost transparency. 


While data security is an important part of any organization’s COE, CIOs need not be experts of the domain. All they need is the right attitude to embrace contemporary practices. They should spearhead all security initiatives and build a permanent practice.

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