Vishal Parmar
  • DaVita
United Kingdom
Vishal Parmar

Vishal Parmar

  • DaVita
United Kingdom

What do you do?

I am responsible for ensuring compliance with all data privacy laws and regulations across multiple jurisdictions such as the GDPR and Brazil’s LGPD. As you can imagine, no two days are the same and I work in close collaboration with local privacy teams across the globe, providing advice and strategic direction to the needs of the business.

Why data?

We live in a data-driven economy and data privacy (in my view) continues to be the most exciting area of law. I started my legal career in TMT law focusing on media, privacy and data protection law and always knew I wanted to develop a career in this specialism. As new data privacy laws and developments evolve around the world, it certainly keeps me on my toes!

What’s keeping you busy?

The rise of privacy regulations across the globe following in the footsteps of the GDPR. My core focus is ensuring each of our country operations is complying with incremental regulatory change, keeping our international privacy framework up to date and harmonising practices across our different businesses. It is very rewarding to know that whatever projects I am working on, the end goal at all times is to ensure that quality care is delivered to our patients.

What mentors or other influential figures have helped you get where you are today?

A few people come to mind. University professors specialising in human rights and privacy law in particular inspired me to look at the law, not just as a means to achieve justice, but as a way to bring about positive change in society too. I try to ensure that these principles and values are represented in everything that I do and believe it has helped me to grow and get to where I am today.

If you could change one data-related law, how and why would you change it?

Streamlining the approach to international data transfers in the global regulatory framework for privacy would be an important change. There may be a solution if data exporters are able to carry out risk assessments in advance of potential data transfers, ensuring that appropriate arrangements and controls are in place on a case-by-case basis.

How has covid-19 affected what you do?

While the global pandemic has had a devastating impact around the world, we still do what we do to ensure our patients receive the critical care that they need. Working from home seems to be the norm for now, but it’d be good to see much-loved colleagues again soon. You just can’t beat the value of in-person conversations.

What’s the next big thing – what data opportunities are companies now looking at?

I think automation and artificial intelligence will be the focus of the future.  AI can clearly be used for good (for example giving doctors a head start on life-threatening illnesses which could help to reduce harm to patients), but privacy concerns are continuously being raised in relation to AI-based algorithms and technologies.

What do you do to relax?

In usual times, travelling to far-flung places, cooking up a storm for friends, eating at new and interesting restaurants, trying not to kill my houseplants, maintaining my 5k runtime and concocting the next best cocktail!

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