This week finds Peter Carlisle in San Francisco. As VP of Global Sales for Entrust’s data protection solutions, Peter racks up the miles while navigating a host of divergent cultures and gaining insight about global customer challenges..

Entrust: Peter, where in the world are you?

PC: San Francisco, California

San Fransisco streetcars

Entrust: What do you enjoy the most about visiting San Francisco?

PC: I love to be on the waterfront. The views of Alcatraz, the Golden Gate Bridge and the hills around the bay are bewitching. Riding the cable car from Market Street to Hyde Street is great fun – especially if you stand outside the car and hang on! A trip to West Coast Leather is worth doing. Really friendly staff, beautiful jackets and more and a history of making special items for Hollywood stars and rock ‘n’ roll royalty.

Entrust: What are some localized challenges customers are facing?

Alcatraz island from 500 meters away

PC: California’s “Silicon Valley” is home to many of the world’s biggest technology companies including Facebook and Google. These companies have kept data privacy issues in the news almost constantly in recent years. Their sheer scale and the depth of engagement they have with large numbers of the global population is, undoubtedly, a key factor in this.

With Facebook we have had the Cambridge Analytica scandal, the Six4Three lawsuit and a hack in September 2018 that compromised data from 30m user accounts.

Earlier this month WhatsApp hit the news due to a sophisticated and highly targeted attack which took over the systems of certain high profile individuals.

Google has felt the need to shut down GooglePlus due to two hacking incidents in 2018 and in 2016 we also saw a high profile breach at LinkedIn which compromised 164m accounts.

This has ensured that data privacy legislation and best practice has reached and remains at the top of the political and consumer agendas. Faced with such a high level of visibility and awareness businesses are, understandably, eager to be seen to be taking the necessary steps to avoid any headline-grabbing incidents.

New legislation is coming soon which will increase the need for responsible data management even further.

Entrust: Can you tell us a little more about some of the regional compliance regulations affecting customers?

PC: Data Privacy legislation goes back to 1972 in California when the state enshrined in law “privacy” as an inalienable right. Several other items followed over the years, including, most recently, The California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (CCPA). The CCPA was signed in July 2018 and becomes fully operational in January 2020. The act will grant consumers the right to request a business disclose the categories and specific pieces of personal information that it collects about the consumer, the categories of sources from which that information is collected, the business purposes for collecting or selling the information and the categories of third parties with which the information is shared. This will be the toughest data legislation in the US and there is some trepidation amongst businesses as they prepare to comply.

Entrust: What type of advice have you given local customers?

PC: There are clear similarities between CCPA and GDPR. Entrust has been heavily engaged in delivering GDPR compliant solutions for many companies so this makes us very well qualified to help California businesses prepare for CCPA over the coming months. On top of that Entrust has a thriving business in California with established customers in IT, finance, energy, telecommunications and other vertical sectors.

Entrust: When visiting San Francisco, is there a specific food or beverage you always seek out?

a plate of roasted dungeoness crab

PC: First stop Capurro’s next to Hyde Street Pier for a roasted Dungeness crab – perfection!

San Francisco’s Chinatown is the biggest outside Asia and there are many outstanding restaurants to try amidst a lively and colourful backdrop.

The markets in the Ferry Building showcase the best of local produce and treats.

Ghirardelli’s chocolate has been in San Francisco since 1852 – you simply have to try some when in town.

Entrust: If you wrote about song about San Francisco for your blues band, what would you call it?

I like to get to The Saloon, which is San Francisco’s oldest bar in the North Beach area, where there is always some good late night live blues to listen to. There are many great characters to found here too leaning against the bar and taking in the sounds. Definitely a song in there – perhaps “Grant Street – 3am”.

If you’d like to learn even more about Peter, please visit his LinkedIn page.