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2023 in Review: What changed in Information Management?

From the increased enforcement of GDPR to the adoption of cutting-edge technologies like AI and blockchain, we examine the critical changes and advancements that have shaped the landscape of information management over the past year.

How has regulation changed in 2023?


GDPR Enforcement

2023 saw the largest GDPR fine ever handed down, approximately €1.2 billion, to Meta by Ireland. In keeping with a general tendency towards higher fines and more stringent enforcement. Crucially the legal ruling concerned EU to U.S. data transfers. Meta was found to have not ensured adequate data-protection during the data-transfer phase. This will have important implications moving forward into 2024.

Indian Digital Personal Data Protection (DPDP) law

This comprehensive law finally enshrines fundamental privacy rights for India’s vast digital population, theoretically giving individuals control over their online data. The DPDP requires businesses to respect individual privacy, invest in robust data security, and provide greater transparency in data handling. We wrote extensively about the implications for businesses in September.

“Right to be Forgotten” beyond the EU?

A case involving Google in Canada has the potential to expand the “right to be forgotten” beyond the EU. This ruling by Canada’s Federal Appeals Court is said to “vindicate [existing] privacy laws”. There’s also talk of other countries potentially drafting similar privacy laws, including Australia.

China’s more stringent data protection

China’s establishment of a national data security commission in 2023 signalled their intent to provide greater rigor over the nation’s vast data resources. This powerful body aims to centralize data governance, oversee cross-border data flows, and ensure national security. You can find our guide on doing business compliantly in China here.

New technology and AI developments

chatgpt AI in Records Management

With 2023 being billed “the year of AI”, Information Management also saw increasing adoption of Artificial Intelligence. AI, particularly Generative AI, was increasingly utilized for tasks such as document classification, metadata extraction, and eDiscovery, enhancing efficiency and accuracy in managing large volumes of data. We provided a rundown of the opportunities, as well as risks, here.

Blockchain for Data Security

Blockchain technology continued to gain traction for its application in ensuring record immutability and enhancing transparency in records management. Its decentralized nature provided a new layer of security against data tampering. The range of potential applications within the Information Management space however remains a question.

Cloud Adoption Increases

More organizations moved their records management systems to cloud storage solutions. This shift raised important questions about data sovereignty and control, especially considering various global data protection regulations.

Events and Trends:

Cybersecurity Attacks

The year 2023 witnessed significant attacks and data breaches, highlighting the requirement for robust cybersecurity measures and Information Governance. The pivot towards ransomware was highlighted as particularly notable, becoming arguably the most common form of major attack in 2023.

Remote Work Challenges

The ongoing shift to remote work posed unique challenges in managing records securely and efficiently outside traditional office environments. This required the development of new strategies and technologies for remote records management.

Workplace Surveillance

Increased use of monitoring software in workplaces sparked discussions about employee privacy and rights, leading to a re-evaluation of surveillance practices in the context of ethical information management.


Focus on ESG and Sustainability

Information management practices became increasingly intertwined with corporate social responsibility and environmental sustainability. Records in their physical and digital forms can have a significant environmental footprint after all. Companies are increasingly recognizing the role of effective records management in supporting their ESG goals. We’ll be covering this particular topic in even more detail in 2024 as Crown continues our own sustainability journey.

This year saw big change across the Information Management landscape. Greater enforcement of GDPR, the integration of AI into records workflows, and the challenges of remote work environments have collectively steered organizations towards more secure, efficient, and compliant information management practices. These advancements not only respond to immediate needs but also lay a foundation for the evolving digital landscape.

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