Mary Liversidge

On Wednesday 8th March, the UK government announced changes to their GDPR regulations which were presented to parliament later last week.

Find out what the changes are, and what they could mean for marketers.

What are the current GDPR requirements?

Marketers are required to comply with the following 3 areas under current GDPR legislation:

  • Data permission – This refers to how email opt-ins are managed. Marketers should not assume customers want to be contacted and they need to receive explicit consent that they want to be contacted

  • Data access – Marketers should ensure sure users can easily access their data and remove consent for its use (for example right to be forgotten and unsubscribe links)

  • Data focus – Marketers should only ask for the data they need, and have a legitimate interest for collecting data. GDPR requires businesses to legally justify the processing of the data collected.

Find out more about how to measure traffic accurately in the days of GDPR here.

What’s changing?

The ‘Data Protection and Digital Information Bill’, which was paused in September 2022 to consult with industries, is being reintroduced after undergoing revisions.

The government have stated that the new legislation will be ‘common-sense-led’ – removing barriers to international trade and cutting the number of repetitive data collection pop-ups online.

The key changes include:

  • Fewer popups: Reducing the number of consent pop-ups people see online, which allow websites to collect data about an individual’s visit.

  • More flexibility: Providing more flexibility around how businesses comply with new data laws

  • Less processing records: Only requiring organisations with high-risk processing activities to keep processing records. For example – organisations who process large volumes of sensitive data about people’s health.

  • More clarity around consent: Providing more clarity around when organisations can process personal data without needing consent. This could include circumstances where there is a public interest in sharing personal data to prevent crime, safeguard national security or protect vulnerable individuals.

How the changes will impact marketing

Improved customer experience

Relentless popups reduce customer experience and can have a significant impact on how users interact with your website, even preventing them from purchasing.

If you’ve ever tried to open a webpage or an ad from social media in your device’s browser – you’ll notice every time you’re required to consent to data tracking again… and again.

The new bill promises fewer popups, and we hope that it will find a way of reducing these across websites and platforms to facilitate better customer experience.

More confidence around legitimate interest in marketing activities

Businesses have often complained about the lack of clarity around their legal standing when it comes to GDPR and data processing. The new regulations seek to change this – and provide businesses with greater confidence to carry out their marketing activities.

Direct marketing – such as email marketing - is now considered a legitimate interest in the bill, meaning storing email contacts could become easier.

Good news for charities

The government have stated that circumstances where there is a public interest in sharing personal data to prevent crime, safeguard national security or protect vulnerable individuals may not require consent for communications.

We predict this will be particularly positive for charities who act in the public interest - but are limited to how they can contact individuals or process data.

With the changes, communications could become much simpler – and charities can act according to common sense – and the interests of the public – rather than bureaucracy.

Final word

The government are yet to announce when the bill will come into effect, or provide a detailed roadmap for businesses, but we will continue to review the changes and provide updates accordingly.

If you require more information about data-driven marketing campaigns that drive results and comply with data regulations, contact TDMP today.