Mozilla has today unveiled a course for SMEs and startups in Kenya to increase their awareness and capabilities on the use and management of data collected in their day-to-day business operations.
The online course, Lean Data Practices (LDP), will be hosted on Udemy, an open-source online courses provider, and is designed for startups and SMEs who lack adequate knowledge about data privacy and security when handling personal information for customers/clients. Many of these startups also need to be better informed about Kenya Data Protection laws in order to protect their ideas and enterprises and to also operate within set regulations.
The three key principles of Lean Data Practice (LDP) are audience engagement, staying lean when collecting data and building security around data collected. Audience engagement enables business owners to keep their audiences informed and empowered about their data. Staying lean strives to minimize data collection by delivering value rather than collecting without a purpose, while building security has to do with protecting data that is entrusted to a business owner.
Speaking during the launch, Noémie Hailu, Africa Innovation Mradi Programme Manager encouraged small businesses to take up the 2-hour course because of its relevance and will enable them to protect themselves and their clients from data breaches and ensure that their businesses are secure.
“The reality of the current economic situation in Kenya and globally is that we are now more digitalized than ever, and at the same time, consumers are now more conversant with their right to privacy hence the need for small enterprises to be deliberate in protecting their businesses and most importantly, the personal information they receive from their customers. LDP will help them understand key terminologies such as personal data, multi-factor authentication, and data lifecycle and apply these terms to their businesses, distinguish data in their businesses that could, if used in the wrong way, be harmful to others,” she said.
The adoption of comprehensive data protection regulations in Kenya has strategically positioned the country into becoming a safe haven for the collection of personal data over the next decade. As the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner raises awareness about data protection and enhances its enforcement capacity, compliance with data protection laws will become more urgent for data handlers in the country.
“Lean Data works in any sector: business, civil society, government. It can be spearheaded by any department: marketing, advocacy, engineering, product, design, compliance, privacy, legal, and customer support. You don’t need a technical degree or a dedicated budget. All you need is a commitment to make data decisions thoughtfully,” she added.