NIST Privacy Framework

What is the NIST Privacy Framework?

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) recently released the Privacy Framework, which assists organizations in prioritizing privacy threats and outcomes, and achieving privacy goals regardless of company size, market, or industry.

Although organizations might have implemented the NIST Cybersecurity Framework (CSF), this does not necessarily imply that privacy risks have been properly addressed. The NIST Privacy Framework fills in the gaps by following the same structure as the NIST CSF and making it simple for businesses to align the two frameworks, as they work together to create a robust enterprise risk management tool for companies.

What are the requirements of the Privacy Framework?

The structure of the NIST Privacy Framework, which is based on the NIST Cybersecurity Framework, is divided into three major sections, as described below: 

  • The Core: The Core provides basic operational guidelines, consisting of five concurrent and continuous functions—Identify, Govern, Control, Communicate, and Protect.
  • The Profile: The Profile enumerates the privacy goals of an organization, identifying goals and the steps to achieve them. 
  • Implementation Tiers: The implementation tiers provide a status of the company’s current state of readiness.

The NIST Privacy Framework recommends that your organization implement privacy controls based on the five privacy functions detailed below:

  • Identify function requires organizational development and understanding what is required to manage the privacy risk posed to individuals as a result of data processing.
  • Govern function requires the development and implementation of an organizational governance structure to allow for a continuous understanding of the organization’s risk management core values, which are informed by privacy risk.
  • Control function requires the development and implementation of efficient strategies to enable the organization or individuals to manage data effectively, to reduce its privacy risk.
  • Communicate function requires the implementation of efficient strategies to assist organizations and individuals to gain a reliable understanding and encourage an open dialogue over how data is processed and the privacy risks associated with it.
  • Protect function requires the development and implementation of effective data processing security measures.

Why should you be compliant with the Privacy Framework?

While it is not mandatory, following the NIST structure has the potential to provide significant benefits, such as helping you create confidence, demonstrate transparency, and becoming better prepared to comply with future regulations.

Today, privacy is an important part of doing business, but many companies are having trouble putting together a solid privacy policy. Companies have been left to develop ad hoc privacy programs in the absence of a consistent structure, jumping on new legislative standards when they arise. Failure to comply with these privacy regulations has resulted in duplicate, differing privacy efforts, disgruntled staff and consumers, and can lead to financial fines and punishments for privacy teams and the entire organization.

NIST aims to provide an accessible, flexible way for organizations to solve privacy issues and improve privacy goals, including compliance with privacy legislation around the world, with the release of the Privacy Framework. Organizations that follow this approach will have streamlined, long-term processes for keeping up with technical and market developments, managing privacy risks, and improving consumer privacy. 

How to achieve compliance?

Companies are moving to advanced software solutions that provide the guidance and execution of policies designed to protect employee and consumer data from unauthorized access as privacy enforcement remains a top concern for corporate management.

Centraleyes’s risk management and compliance platform provides simplified, automated data collection and analysis, as well as prioritized remediation guidance and real-time customized scoring, to meet the NIST Privacy Framework for companies protecting their customer’s PII (Personally identifiable information) and PHI (Protected Health Information). Centraleyes has mapped the Privacy Framework back to its extensive control inventory, allowing it to share data across multiple frameworks through the platform, which saves valuable time and money and supports more accurate data. 

Organizations will gain complete insight into their cyber risk levels and compliance using the Centraleyes platform, as well as a ready-to-use report for audits.

Read more:

Does your company need to be compliant with NIST Privacy Framework?

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