Important new General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) come into effect from 25th May 2018, following the misuse of consumers personal information by some organisations.
It is an important step in helping individuals keep their personal information personal and knowing exactly what companies hold about them and what they have done with it.
Like many laws it can be overwhelming and intimidating especially with all of the hype surrounding it and everyone appearing to be an expert. We are no experts, but from the many webinars and hours spent reading about it we genuinely believe most campaigners have no need to fear – it appears to be relatively straight forward and awareness and common sense seem to go a long way.
First things first, on the whole if you are a Business to Business organisation, so you only communicate with businesses and hold data about businesses them GDPR is not relevant to you – more information available here.
The exception to this rule is if you hold personal data about an individual at a business then you will have to make sure you are compliant.
More widely, a few key questions to ask yourself:
- Are you aware of the data you hold about individuals? If the answer is no then an audit of this is necessary.
- If you hold any personal data what do you do with it?
- Do you have the explicit consent of people on a database to contact them?
Go back to basics before the GDPR comes into effect contact people to see if they still want to be part of what you are campaigning for and communicating about.
A simple MailChimp email to an existing list you have asking people to opt in is an ideal way to make sure you have people’s permission to store their data. This may mean the number of people on your database will reduce, but you’ll know they all want to get your campaign info – and so open and click through rates should increase!
The storing of data is also key to ensure you are being GDPR compliant:
- Where is the data being held? Is it safe and secure?
- Are you collecting data through your website? Where does it go and do you have consent to use it?
If you need more information and advice, the best resource we have come across is free and is from the Information Commissioner.