Q&As

When can charities or social enterprises send emails to past donors for direct marketing purposes?

read titleRead full title
Published on LexisPSL on 17/05/2019

The following TMT Q&A provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • When can charities or social enterprises send emails to past donors for direct marketing purposes?
  • Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003, SI 2003/2426
  • General Data Protection Regulation, Regulation (EU) 2016/679
  • Interplay between PECR 2003 and the GDPR

Electronic direct marketing in any sector requires consideration of:

  1. the Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003 (PECR 2003), SI 2003/2426

  2. the General Data Protection Regulation (the GDPR), Regulation (EU) 2016/679

  3. self-regulatory codes such as the UK Code of Non-broadcast Advertising and Direct & Promotional Marketing (CAP Code)

In relation to charitable fundraising, the Code of Fundraising Practice will also be relevant.

Detailed guidance on all of these bodies of rules in the context of direct marketing is contained in Practice Note: Direct marketing.

Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003, SI 2003/2426

It is generally not permitted under PECR 2003, SI 2003/2426 to send unsolicited emails to individuals without their consent.

The consent must be to the standard required by the GDPR (freely given, specific, informed and unambiguous). See Practice Notes: Processing personal data—standard of consent and Processing personal data—obtaining, recording and managing consent.

There is an exception to the requirement to obtain consent when marketing similar products and services to existing customers. This is known as the soft opt-in, but, crucially in this context, it only applies to commercial marketing.

ICO guidance on direct marketing issued by the Information

Related documents:

Popular documents