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The Privacy Advisor | IAPP holds first-ever live training on the Chinese mainland Related reading: Why China’s cultural attitudes toward privacy may be in flux

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From Oct. 17 through 19, the IAPP held its inaugural on-the-ground live training on the Chinese mainland. Global technology company Huawei hosted the event at its headquarters in Shenzhen, a city just over the border from Hong Kong.

Huawei Chief Privacy Officer John Howie, CIPP/US, CIPT, said the decision to pursue live training was borne of a conversation with company leadership at a quarterly meeting of its Global Cybersecurity and Privacy Committee. They felt “every employee who has a role in privacy, and the protection of customer data, needed to be able to prove that they were competent in [privacy] and we recognized IAPP certifications as the best way to accomplish this."

Holding the live training event at company headquarters is symbolic, he added.

“While we make many privacy decisions ‘on the ground’ in regions and countries where we sell products and deploy cloud services, it was recognized that many of the processes employed, and the products and services themselves, are developed at headquarters,” he said.

The training marked the first of several planned IAPP certification events, focusing specifically on the CIPM and CIPT designations.

Those two certifications most clearly aligned with employees' needs, Howie said.

“We decided to hold CIPT training for those staff in product management and development, to help reinforce the concepts of privacy by design, the role of privacy impact assessments, etc., which are objectives and activities we already prioritize,” he said. “For those staff who are responsible for ensuring privacy processes are followed and maintained, or who have a general role in privacy such as education and awareness, we felt that the CIPM would be a better certification.”

The classes were helmed by Cranium’s Bavo Van den Heuvel, FiP, CIPM, CIPP/E, CIPT. While Van den Heuvel taught in English, there were translation services for those who needed it. The move mirrored the company's established language procedures. While it's an international company based in China, “Huawei uses Mandarin Chinese and English for all communications and business documentation, and most staff have a good understanding of English," he added.

Employee interest in the training and subsequent certifications is and remains high, Howie said.

“Everyone is cognizant of the need to attain certification if they have a significant role in privacy," so much so that Howie predicts that the company will host more trainings and events in 2017.

“Getting certified is really just the first step in demonstrating competency in privacy at Huawei,” he continued. "We will expect everyone certified to maintain their certifications and expand their knowledge by keeping up with new privacy developments and approaches, and to actually perform their duties bearing in mind what they have learned." 

IAPP Training Director Marla Berry, CIPT, also emphasized the importance of the class. “The privacy training course in Shenzhen clearly indicates the global scope of the IAPP’s certifications and educational opportunities, as well as their dexterity,” she said. “We are excited about the opportunity to work in conjunction with Huawei to bring the first-ever live IAPP training course to China, and look forward to continuing to train on the ground in the Asia-Pacific region as it continues to develop into a privacy hub.” 

Photo courtesy of Courtney Gabrielson. 

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