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IAPP Exam CIPP-US Topic 5 Question 9 Discussion

Actual exam question for IAPP's Certified Information Privacy Professional/United States exam
Question #: 9
Topic #: 5
[All Certified Information Privacy Professional/United States Questions]


Please use the following to answer the next QUESTION

When there was a data breach involving customer personal and financial information at a large retail store, the company's directors were shocked. However, Roberta, a privacy analyst at the company and a victim of identity theft herself, was not. Prior to the breach, she had been working on a privacy program report for the executives. How the company shared and handled data across its organization was a major concern. There were neither adequate rules about access to customer information nor

procedures for purging and destroying outdated dat

a. In her research, Roberta had discovered that even low- level employees had access to all of the company's customer data, including financial records, and that the company still had in its possession obsolete customer data going back to the 1980s.

Her report recommended three main reforms. First, permit access on an as-needs-to-know basis. This would mean restricting employees' access to customer information to data that was relevant to the work performed. Second, create a highly secure database for storing customers' financial information (e.g., credit card and bank account numbers) separate from less sensitive information. Third, identify outdated customer information and then develop a process for securely disposing of it.

When the breach occurred, the company's executives called Roberta to a meeting where she presented the recommendations in her report. She explained that the company having a national customer base meant it would have to ensure that it complied with all relevant state breach notification laws. Thanks to Roberta's guidance, the company was able to notify customers quickly and within the specific timeframes set by state breach notification laws.

Soon after, the executives approved the changes to the privacy program that Roberta recommended in her report. The privacy program is far more effective now because of these changes and, also, because privacy and security are now considered the responsibility of every employee.

Based on the problems with the company's privacy security that Roberta identifies, what is the most likely cause of the breach?

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Suggested Answer: A


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