10th June 2017 saw Mexico and Germany agree on a Duel Year, aiming to strengthen strategic relationships and incentivise future projects. One of the most interesting issues to arise from the event was the lack of regulations within the digital market.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel spoke of her concerns of the unregulated nature of today’s digital market. She believes that regulations – similar to those for financial markets in the G20 and for trade under the World Trade Organisation – are essential to safeguard today’s digital industry.
Merkel, speaking at the Dual Year event in Mexico City said, “We still have no international rules”.
As technology continues to forge new areas that require regulations, global policy-makers are at a loss of how to enforce legislation that would protect the digital market.
Merkel continued “…on this question of the rules-based handling of it, we’re still right at the start.”
Germany gets ahead of the privacy act
The German Chancellor’s comment on this doesn’t come as a surprise. With an increased awareness of cyber security and its importance after hacking scandals involving the US, Russia and North Korea, attention to this topic is not only wise, but essential.
With the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) coming into effect from 25th May 2018, the need for active cyber security diligence is more necessary than ever. Impressively, Germany is the first EU Member state to establish a new Data Protection Act in line with the GDPR.
Germany’s Federal Assembly approved the new Federal Data Protection Act which will replace and incorporate the present German data protection laws, marrying with those set out in the EU GDPR.
What do the changes relating to data privacy, regulations and increased awareness of cyber security mean for those working in digital?
Digital market regulations outlook
Kimberly Bohle, Associate Director at Cogs Berlin says, “We welcome initiatives which encourage German companies to act smarter with their data and to create more products and services utilising data. This opens up new jobs in the market, which we are prepared to tackle.”
If Merkel is able to put the debate about data and internet regulations into focus, we can expect an increase in demand for data, security and IT related jobs.
With her concerns over digital security and restrictions, she is also challenging German companies to use the data they possess for the development of new products and applications. Behind that concern is an outflow of user data to the likes of Google and Facebook, who in turn use the data to improve their services. German companies should focus on generating, owning and making use of their data to stay competitive.
Moreover, the increased awareness and implementation of GDPR adherence will drive more traditional companies to actively improve the way they work with data.
Be it voluntary or mandatory, the job market will open for those working in cyber security to make sure new regulations are adhered and cyber attackers deterred. Additionally, companies will invest and expand in their data teams, creating more demand for data specialists. Especially during the transition period, business analysts, product developers and digital transformation consultants will be in high demand to guide slackers into the digital realm.
Whilst it’s not clear what Angela Merkel’s digital regulations will consist of or how they shall be implemented, it’s obvious that the industry is prepared to work towards a more secure and regulated market.