Tips To Protect Personal Identifiable Information (PII)

What is PII, CPRA and GDPR?

Personal identifiable information (PII) is any information that can be used to identify a specific individual. This can include information such as a person’s name, address, Social Security number, driver’s license number, email address, phone number, and financial information, among others. PII can also include unique identifiers such as biometric data or an IP address. Organizations that collect, store, and use PII have a legal and ethical responsibility to protect this information from unauthorized access, use, and disclosure. PII is considered sensitive information that if falls into the wrong hands, can cause significant harm to the individual, financially or otherwise.

The California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA) and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) are two regulations that were put in place to protect PII and give individuals more control over their personal data.

The California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA) is a California state law that amends and expands the CCPA. It gives California residents new rights and protections over their personal information, such as the right to prevent the sale of their personal information to third parties, the right to opt-out of the “sale” of their personal information, and the right to receive a copy of their personal information. The law went into effect on January 1, 2023

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a regulation of the European Union (EU) that went into effect on May 25, 2018. It applies to organizations that process personal data of individuals in the EU. It gives EU citizens more control over their personal data, such as the right to access their personal data, the right to have their personal data erased, and the right to object to the processing of their personal data. The GDPR also requires organizations to have appropriate security measures in place to protect personal data and to report data breaches to the relevant authorities.

In summary, CPRA is a California state law that provides California residents with more control over their personal information and GDPR is a EU regulation that applies to organizations that process personal data of individuals in the EU, it gives EU citizens more control over their personal data.

Ways to Protect PII in your organization

There are several ways to control personal identifiable information (PII) within your organization in order to protect it from unauthorized access and misuse. Some methods include:

  • Encryption: Encrypting PII can help to protect it from unauthorized access and ensure that only authorized parties can view it.

  • Access controls: Implementing access controls can help to ensure that only authorized individuals have access to PII.

  • Data minimization: Collecting only the minimum amount of PII necessary can help to reduce the risk of data breaches.

  • Data retention and disposal policies: Having policies in place for the retention and disposal of PII can help to ensure that it is not kept longer than necessary and is disposed of properly.

  • Regular security audits: Regularly auditing systems and processes that handle PII can help to identify and mitigate potential security risks.

  • Employee education and training: Educating and training employees on how to handle PII can help to reduce the risk of human error and ensure that PII is handled in accordance with company policies.

  • Strong Passwords and two-factor authentication: Use of strong passwords and two-factor authentication can help to protect PII from unauthorized access.

  • Regular software updates: Regularly updating software can help to protect against known security vulnerabilities.


The Optimal IdM Approach: Not just good security. Good data control.

Good security is not the same thing as good data control, and businesses concerned with PII compliance can no longer be satisfied with standard IAM solutions. Optimal IdM gives businesses innovative capabilities that will help them comply with both current and future regulations.

Optimal IdM customers can keep EU customers’ data in the EU and US customers’ data in the US. That has been a major hurdle for businesses that wish to operate in both markets, but Optimal IdM eliminates some of the friction. 

Businesses can control access to PII based on dynamic and static policies built around contextual factors such as user behavior, device, location, etc. And not only can they control access to apps, but they can also control the flow of data to apps, so one user may be able to view all PII in any app while another is disallowed from seeing some or all types of PII in some or all apps. MFA is included in all offerings and Optimal IdM

MFA isn’t just fingerprints and eye scans. The OptimalCloud offers passwordless authentication by supporting Typing Behavior Biometrics, a technology that learns each user’s typing patterns so a user doesn’t have to use a password at all – they can just type their name or email address to be authenticated.


Optimal IdM is already in compliance with CPRA and meets the geolocation requirements of GDPR. New privacy regulations are not likely to ask for more stringent controls in the foreseeable future, so choosing Optimal IdM today will deliver the best return on investment in coming years. See Optimal IdM in action. Request a demo today – and bring your compliance questions!


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  • The database in which all of your organization’s sensitive identity data is stored.
  • A digital ledger in which digital transactions are recorded chronologically and publicly.
  • Securely managing customer identity and profile data, and controlling customer access to applications and services.
  • The means of linking a person's electronic identity and attributes, stored across multiple distinct identity management systems.
  • A legal framework that sets guidelines for the collection and processing of personal information of individuals within the EU.
  • The policy-based centralized orchestration of user identity management and access control.
  • An authentication infrastructure that is built, hosted and managed by a third-party service provider.
  • A security system that requires more than one method of authentication from independent categories of credentials to verify the user's identity for a login or other transaction.
  • A global provider of innovative and affordable identity access management solutions. 
  • Managing and auditing account and data access by privileged users.
  • Tools and technologies for controlling user access to critical information within an organization.
  • An authentication process that allows a user to access multiple applications with one set of login credentials.