Privacy impact assessments (PIAs) help organizations determine the privacy risks of using/processing personal data. PIAs typically follow three critical steps. First, PIAs determine how personal data is used by the organization and if the processing conforms with regulations. Second, they analyze the risk of personal data based on how the data is accessed and used. Third, they evaluate what processes, controls or protections would reduce privacy risk and improve compliance.
The GDPR calls out PIAs as data protection impact assessments in Article 35 for processing that may create high risk. Not all legislation call out PIAs specifically, but PIAs represent a best practice for assessing overall privacy readiness. The specific requirements of PIAs vary based on what privacy regulation they target.
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