A Franchise Attorney is Part James Bond
Okay, even though you may be giggling about that previous statement, it will amaze you to learn that it is absolutely true.
Every single day new data is revealed regarding the world of franchising. Whether it be new rules and regulations that need to be followed, laws that have to be adhered to, or even new avenues in the social media world that have to be utilized in order for a franchisor to create a brand name that will be ‘buzzed’ about and bring in the profits – the world of franchising has many ‘nooks and crannies’ that have to be understood before being able to achieve success.
Having a franchise attorney on your side, as we all should know by now, is a crucial need whether you are the franchisor or the franchisee. However, a franchise attorney should not be categorized as a lawyer only. In fact, a franchise attorney is part ‘Big Brother,’ making sure that your documents, plans and programs are solid and in place; part ‘PR Specialist,’ making sure that the avenues of social media and marketing you’re using are understood so that your company is beginning on the right foot, AND, yes…part 007.
It is a fact that data breaches are common in the business world; statistics show that more than 300 major breaches involving over a hundred million consumer records are reported each and every year. High costs and a great deal of work are involved when solving these breaches and retrieving data that the company has to have. When it comes to the franchisor, you are talking about businesses that have a wealth of data that will usually include confidential information on everyone from customers to employees, to sensitive information regarding their own franchisees.
Of course, with the franchising community these breaches are even more frightening because, in most cases, a number of franchisees have also collected and stored data about their customers and employees.
Not only legal costs come into play when security is breached and data is stolen. The most fragile thing about a franchise will be negatively affected – their reputation. And with security breaches that have client financial information disappearing, the crumbling reputation of the franchise will have it bankrupt. Therefore, proper security must be put in place by a franchise attorney who knows what they’re doing.
Mike Rosenthal is that attorney. He knows the importance of promoting and advising his clients on good security for a franchisor’s confidential information. He understands the damage that can come with a breach, not to mention the high costs to the franchisor if something like this occurs.
A franchisor’s security policy must be up-to-date. There are many owners who don’t realize that a security evaluation must also take place on a regular basis. And that security review must take an in-depth look at how client information is collected by the franchise, the type of data that’s being stored, and the technology the franchise is utilizing in order to gain the data.
There are a variety of areas in a franchisor’s business that can be lacking in security. When it comes to technology, you are speaking about laptop thefts; human and/or software errors; the ability and skill of hackers; as well as employees who are working internally to collect the data for themselves.
Once all of these are taken into account and the franchisor’s system is in place, it is then time to instruct franchisees on the necessity of data security. Currently there is a legal issue being debated regarding whether or not a franchisor will be held liable for giving one of its franchisees data if the franchisee has not employed good security. Therefore, putting a plan in place and then training franchisees on everything from the right way to dispose of data to the procedures for responding to any data security problems that arise – is an absolute must!
Expertise and knowledge that the franchise attorney owns is what all franchisors and franchisees need in order to protect their brand, comply with all legal obligations and make sure that – above all – their reputation remains unscathed.
Evaluating, reevaluating, reviews, compliance issues, data security plans – these issues are huge for the franchise community. And, believe it or not, only someone with the agility and intelligence of ‘James Bond’ is going to help you figure it all out!