Updates to the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will apply to the UK from May 2018 and although that seems like a long way off, not preparing for these changes could prove costly.
Fact is, companies could face a hefty fine if the new changes are not put in place with the potential for members of the public to claim damages (think PPI compensation claims for an idea of the implications this could have), according to Article 29, which was published in January 2017.
But don’t worry says our digital marketing manager Colin McDonald, action now can make all the difference later.
What is being proposed is an update to the current level of consumer opt-in consent that is used for marketing purposes, in essence making it clearer for consumers to understand what they are signing up for and how their data will be used.
This means, that when collecting data for marketing purposes, the message to the consumer is made much clearer and tactics like pre-populating opt-in tick boxes will no longer be acceptable.
As databases will be judged against this new standard any users that have previously signed up with a pre-populated opt-in system will have to sign up again in order for companies to continue marketing to them after May 2018. For companies that have a large database, this could cause major headaches.
This process can be seen as a positive if the correct message is delivered to the database. If you have to contact users to renew consent, it can be used to gain new data to enhance future marketing communications, and if done well the benefits could outweigh the negatives.
Review your process
We would suggest an audit of your process sooner rather than later to include:
Take a look at your current database
Know how you acquired your user data
Review and disclose your data practices
Plan a strategy for getting fresh consent
For full details on the implications of the GDPR, click here.