Why am I getting so many GDPR emails?

This GDPR thing is quite annoying isn’t it? If you’re anything like me, over the last several years you’ve probably created an account with countless companies, probably just to view or buy one thing, and then completely forgotten that you have done so.

Well, those casual log-ins have now come home to roost. My inbox has been absolutely flooded over the last month or so from these companies that I barely remember using. It is so tempting to put them all straight into the trash folder but… should I really be doing that? Personally I wouldn’t.

What is GDPR?

Under GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation), an EU regulation now in effect, all organisations must give you the option to opt-in to them keeping your information, that means you must explicitly state that you want to hear from them. Silence can no longer be considered consent in this situation.

It is important to know this otherwise you may no longer be hearing from those companies, big and small, that you might not even realise you like hearing from.

Do you really not want to hear about the newest fashion bag that’s on sale? Can you really afford to miss out on the latest financial advice? Do you really want to risk not being able to get advance tickets to the show you have been longing to see? These are the risks you take when you decide not to opt-in.

Should I ignore them?

No-GDPR

Photo by Kai Pilger

You can but you really shouldn’t. It’s a massive pain but you should review every single email that talks about GDPR to really decide which companies it’s worth you keeping in touch with.

If you’re interested in the brand or don’t want to miss out on possible deals, then click the keep in touch link.

If it’s something you don’t want to hear about, if you get too many emails or maybe you don’t find them useful anymore, then just delete them and look forward to your clearer inbox. Because let’s be honest, you might not be interested in the same companies at 35 that you were at 25. Tastes and times change, and you might not want to hear from your local nightclub when you’re up in the night with a new baby.

Will anything happen if I don’t opt-in?

Not really, you should notice that your inbox is considerably lighter and over time you might come to realise that there are certain companies that you are no longer hearing from that you actually do miss. Don’t worry though. You are perfectly entitled to log on to these companies and change your communication preferences at any time. Companies are entitled to keep your information for up to seven years so that shouldn’t be a problem.

Is not opting-in enough?

Fear not. Part of the GDPR is that you have the ‘right to be forgotten’. How amazing is that! Each company may have slightly different procedures in place and it may take some time, but you can request that companies remove all records of you and your information from their registers.

What about emails that say I don’t need to respond?

Well, there do seem to be two ways of interpreting the new guidelines.

Group A thinks that sending you an email telling you that GDPR has come in and you just need to be told about it but don’t need to do anything else.

Group B thinks that they should send you an email telling you about GDPR and that you should ‘click this button to opt-in’ or ‘visit the website and check this box’.

Personally, I believe that Group B is correct. They are being pro-active and telling you everything you need to know and what you should do. GDPR means you should opt-in so Group A should re-think their strategy, or they may face penalties in the long run.

I would recommend to our clients that they go with Group B’s thinking, it’s much clearer and is good practice.

So, what now?

GDPR-Question

Photo by Evan Dennis

Basically, all of the control is yours as the user. The guidelines are now in effect and should be working. You can opt-in or remain silent and no longer hear from them. It’s totally your choice. Doesn’t that feel great!

 

Have a look at how Digital Technology Labs can help you and your business become GDPR compliant. If you liked this post, why not share it with your friends?

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