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How to automate your DSAR process with discovery & redaction

As the volume of DSAR requests increases, organizations are turning to automation to help manage the redaction process.

July 21, 2021

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When your organization is asked to process a Data Subject Access Request (DSAR), you must respond as quickly as possible. The process entails identifying the requested data wherever it lives in all of your files, including emails, PDFs, spreadsheets, and other file types.

In addition, because files often contain the data subject’s information commingled with other people’s sensitive data, the latter has to be redacted from files, too. This must be completed in full before your organization can share the information with the data subject requesting it.

While the DSAR identity and redaction process is simple enough, executing it manually can be resource-intensive. As such, it’s often time-consuming, inefficient, and inaccurate. 

As the volume of DSAR requests increases due to user awareness, data breaches, and public privacy incidents, organizations are turning to automation to help manage the process.

The Challenges of Increased DSAR Requests

Privacy regulations such as the GDPR and CCPA/CPRA have increased consumers’ awareness of their privacy rights. Because of this, data subjects’ DSAR requests have seen a significant increase

Employee-based requests are also on the rise. 

These have become both more common and more in-scope. And this leads to a greater amount of unstructured data related to different employees being combined with that of the data subjects. An example of a consumer request would relate to a record of a support request and subsequent replies between a data subject and an employee. An example of an employee request would relate emails between that employee and other employees.

In a case like this, it’s crucial to remove any sensitive information from the record that can’t be shared with the data subject submitting the request.

This emphasizes the need for enhanced data discovery in the DSAR workflow and Redaction. Identifying the requested data quickly and redacting other people’s sensitive information from the files are crucial  tasks. 

But this also adds obvious complexities to the DSAR redaction process.

Automate DSAR Redaction to Add Speed and Accuracy

As your organization faces the reality of more and more DSAR requests now and in the future, you must plan to scale your team and processes to meet regulatory requirements in this area.

Many are turning to automation-powered tools to solve this challenge.

Automation powers the discovery of sensitive information in files and automatically redacts it by using machine learning and AI-powered software.

In other words, it’s a fast way to find, review, and prepare information for sharing. The tool allows you to customize your redactions with color categories by type of information removed. The tool also allows you to replace the redacted area with text if you want.

In fact, there are many benefits of automating DSAR redaction:

  • Automatically initiate discoveries of data associated with the individual across all assets.
  • Automatically scan unstructured files to identify sensitive information and redact it.
  • Leverage NLP, machine learning, and OCR to understand the information in files.
  • Approve decisions based on confidence-scored suggested redactions.
  • Create reusable templates of what to redact, information to be redacted, and information not to be redacted.

Whereas manual DSAR redaction opens up the possibility for errors in redaction and data safety, automation creates a more secure outcome. Your organization can rest assured knowing when you automate DSAR requests, you’re fulfilling the requests as accurately and as quickly as possible. 

No matter what volume of requests you experience, you’ll be able to handle them all.

Conclusion: Trust an Experienced Data Redaction Partner

Although privacy regulations are now several years old, DSAR requests are gaining more and more momentum. That means there aren’t many automation-powered tools on the market that have been developed and tested to automate DSAR requests.

You’ll want to onboard a platform that’s been around for a long time, is designed with DSAR requests in mind, and supports other privacy management functions.

The OneTrust Data Redaction tool integrated with the OneTrust DSAR Module is designed to do just that. It allows you to efficiently redact and review sensitive information in your files when you receive a DSAR request. It equips your organization to efficiently redact data when encountering DSARs. And it ensures adequate removal of sensitive data from files quickly and more efficiently than your existing manual processes.

To learn more about how to automate the DSAR process and the advantages for your organization, download our free infographic.

To learn more about the OneTrust Data Redaction tool, schedule a demo today.

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