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GDPR

GDPR

A quarter of UK consumers eye up potential GDPR compensation pay-outs

A survey of 1,000 UK consumers suggests that around half (52 per cent) would make a request if they suspected their personal information was being held without their consent.

According to the data from Macro 4 and MaruUsurv, 39 per cent would consider doing it just because they are curious to see what data companies are holding about them; and 26 per cent would make a request if there was a chance of compensation – which is possible if the rules were not being followed or their privacy was being breached, for example.

17 per cent would make a request in order to ‘get back’ at companies who had given them a negative experience.

In fact, only seven per cent of UK consumers would not be interested in seeing the personal information companies are holding about them, according to the survey.

As such, the research indicates GDPR requests will pose a challenge for organizations, both because personal data now includes so many different types of information and because it is difficult to predict just how many requests to prepare for.

Lynda Kershaw, Marketing Manager at Macro 4, said: “Personal information can be anything that is identifiable to an individual: everything from contact details, date of birth and credit card numbers, to information within emails and social media conversations, letters, bills and policy documents. Much of this is unstructured information held in separate systems controlled by different business departments and cannot be pulled together at the snap of your fingers.

“And things get even more complicated if you’re an online or ecommerce business that tracks people’s online behavior – such as the web pages they visit and ads they click – for marketing purposes. Under the new rules, cookies, IP addresses and other online identifiers all count as personal data. You need to explain exactly how you are using this kind of information, and be able to respond to customer queries about it, too.”

62 per cent of the survey sample said they want stricter rules surrounding data collected about people’s online behavior (sites they visit, ads they click and purchases they make). The GDPR takes account of this by classifying online identifiers such as computer IP addresses as personal information.

Surprisingly, with over six months to go before the GDPR takes effect, the research suggests that 66 per cent of consumers already have some awareness of the regulation. 43 per cent say they want to see bigger fines for companies who are not following data protection rules.

While tough financial penalties are expected for failing to comply with the GDPR, experts believe companies should also be concerned about compensation litigation, which could mimic the activity that has grown around Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) compensation pay-outs.

This supposes that hundreds or thousands of individuals could be brought together by law firms to mount ‘no-win, no-fee’ class actions against organizations who have not adhered to the new data privacy regulation.

Other findings of the Macro 4 research include:

  • 42% of consumers find it difficult to keep track of personal information they have consented to organizations collecting
  • 41% would be more likely to use a company that made it easier to understand what personal information they are holding and how it will be used
  • 31% want companies to provide discounts, special offers and other incentives in exchange for their personal information

For more background on the survey results download Macro 4’s accompanying report ‘The GDPR: what consumers think’ at: http://www.macro4.com/the-gdpr-what-consumers-think.

Mind appoints PSONA to help tackle GDPR issues

Mental health charity Mind has appointed customer engagement agency PSONA to deliver a campaign to ‘educate and empower’ its supporters, assisting them in being able to opt-in to Mind’s communications.

Under the new GDPR directive, pre-ticked boxes to give implied consent will no longer be accepted, forcing charities such as Mind to rethink how they contact donors and potential supporters.

Failure to comply with GDPR rules can bring fines of up to 20 million Euros, or 4% of annual revenue, whichever is higher.

“As the changes around GDPR draw nearer, we wanted an agency with strong credentials and experience to help take us through it,” said Annabel Davis, head of communications and marketing at Mind.

“Mind only exists because of the amazing support of people who donate, fundraise, speak out on mental health, and give up their time to volunteer for us or tell us how to improve,” added Davis.

GDPR

Only 6% of UK firms fully prepared for GDPR

Britain’s top firms and charities urgently need to do more to prepare for General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), according to new Government research.

The findings were part of the FTSE 350 Cyber Governance Health Check – the UK Government’s annual report providing insight into how the UK’s biggest 350 companies deal with cyber security.

The Government will soon be introducing its new Data Protection Bill to Parliament. With this coming into effect next May, implementing the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the report for the first time included questions about data protection.

The new data protection law will strengthen the rights of individuals and provide them with more control over how their personal data is being used.

The report found:

  • Awareness of GDPR was good, with almost all firms (97 per cent) aware of the new regulation
  • Almost three quarters (71 per cent) of firms said they were somewhat prepared to meet the GDPR requirements, with only 6 per cent being fully prepared
  • Just 13 per cent said GDPR was regularly considered by their board
  • 45 per cent of Boards say they are most concerned with meeting GDPR requirements relating to an individual’s right to personal data deletion

The Information Commissioner’s Office has produced guidance for organisations on implementing the regulation, including a checklist for businesses on the actions they need to take; and a series of interactive workshops and webinars.

The ICO will also produce guidance for organisations about the responsibilities under the GDPR and individuals on their rights under the GDPR.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport will continue to work closely with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) during this transitional period.

The FTSE 350 Cyber Governance Health Check is carried out in collaboration with the audit community, including Deloitte, EY, KPMG and PWC.