Processing personal data for direct marketing purposes is carried out by the vast majority of organisations. Businesses from sole traders through to large corporations as well as the public sector, charities, political parties and other not-for-profit organisations all use direct marketing as a tool to grow their business or publicise their causes and aims.
However all organisations have an obligation to ensure their direct marketing activities comply with the General Data Protection Regulation, Data Protection Act 2018 and the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003. The draft code aims to help those undertaking direct marketing to comply.
The ICO has previously produced direct marketing guidance and the draft code builds on this, as well as taking into account the input received during the initial call for views. The code takes a practical life-cycle approach to direct marketing.
It starts with a section looking at the definition of direct marketing to help organisations decide if the code applies to them, before moving on to cover areas such as planning marketing, collecting data, delivering marketing messages and individuals rights.
The code is out for consultation until 4 March 2020 and the final version is expected later this year. You can read the code and take part in the consultation through the ICO website.