Some businesses are more regulated than others, but regulations affect almost every business in some way.
If you have employees, then you will most certainly be under the watchful eyes of the Department of Labor and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. If you accept payments by credit card, then you need to worry about PCI-DSS compliance. If you handle medical records in any fashion, then HIPAA will play a large part in how your operations run. If you run a grocery store, restaurant or bar, there are health code implications to consider. If you are in the construction or manufacturing industries, then there is a chance that OSHA will come knocking on your door one day.
Running afoul of government regulations can be a company killer. After experiencing a data breach, a business may have to cease accepting credit card transactions or be forced to pay higher subsequent charges than the initial cost of security compliance. Regulatory agencies can have the power to shut down a business until it can come back into compliance. Even if the agency doesn’t stop your business from operating, fines and damages to your reputation can seriously hinder your business.
Large corporations often have entire departments staffed with dozens of people who are dedicated solely to monitoring and maintaining compliance for the organization. While you may not have the resources to have someone spend their entire day looking at your compliance efforts, those same regulations may still apply to your company as well. Having proper policies and procedures in place can minimize the risk of regulatory infractions. You need to have the proper checks and balances in place to catch non-compliant activities before they become widespread. No business is perfect and mistakes do happen. Government agencies will give leniency to those companies that show they are trying to be compliant. They want to see that you have the infrastructure in place to prevent infractions, systems to detect them when they do occur and processes to remediate the damage. At a minimum, you need to be able to show the agency that you are trying. You may not avoid being fined or otherwise reprimanded, but it can help to avoid disastrous monetary penalties and possible shutdown.
The Guidry Group can help clients identify vulnerabilities, assess risk and develop policies to meet your compliance needs as well as provide advice and counsel when those agencies come knocking at your door.