First published

Jan 08, 2020

Time to read


Not GDPR again, and in the same sentence as BREXIT?!

So sorry, but good, clean data is so important so please read on…

This update is designed to cut through some of the noise around GDPR and BREXIT and provide you the top line information that matters - and should only be used in the spirit in which it is intended; as a guide.

We’re happy to support you with your individual case, reviewed on its own merit and in conjunction with any legal advice you may take. Please just ask.

Deal or No Deal…

So now we have it, deal or no deal the UK will formally leave the European Union (EU). Regardless of that being orderly or a crash out, the government has made it clear that the one thing it is going to retain is the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) – this is a good thing.

Why? Restricting the free movement of data around the EU would cause huge potential damage in the short term to not just the UK economy but to the EU as well.

So, the UK regulator, The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) states that the government intends to incorporate GDPR into UK data protection law when we exit the EU – so in practice there will be little change to the core data protection principles, rights and obligations found in the legislation we are all already working to.

As always in such matters, there are a bunch of data processing anomalies out there, relative to jurisdiction (e.g. EU, European Economic Area, European Commission and beyond) making some far away nations technically not safe, like Australia for example. Sounds dramatic, in reality it’s more about different standards than anything scary. If you would like more details on this stuff, please just ask.

The nub of it is, data processing can be complicated, and the question that UK businesses should be asking is how much time and disruption is this going to cause?

Does this affect you?

People marketing in Business-to-Business (B2B) in the EU

B2B is far less contentious than consumer world because it’s only individuals who have rights, not organisations. As a consequence, it shouldn't make too much difference for organisations not handling personal data, and who respect individual permission requests (e.g. unsubscribe).

People marketing in B2B in the UK

Companies shouldn't notice any difference as they will most likely reference the terms of the GDPR into the Data Protection Act 2018.

However, that means documentation may need changing - such as privacy notices or statements - and cookies may well need to be updated too.

People marketing in B2B globally

There is currently free movement of personal data between different EU members which includes UK. When the UK leaves the EU, data sovereignty will potentially change depending on how the EU chooses to recognise the adequacy of the UK’s data protection laws. Currently things will stay as they are.

So long as all things stay equal, companies shouldn’t notice any difference.

Just like GDPR first time around, there is a lot of noise around ‘potential’ problems that ‘could’ arise based on scenarios that suit the people saying it! We will stick on fact and let you know if that changes.

People marketing to consumers in the EU

Again, so long as all things stay equal, not much will change.

It is prudent to mention that some difficulties would arise should the EU choose to make things more difficult. But, nobody really knows the answer to that until the UK actually leaves.

People marketing to consumers in the UK

Will not be affected – see section above concerning B2B in the UK.

People marketing to consumers globally

These firms won't see much difference because GDPR is only recognised throughout the EU. Although, if you're looking to sell beyond the EU to a specific market, you do need to be mindful of other legislation. For example, the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) gives consumers far more data protection rights than anywhere else in America.

Just in case you’re left with more questions than answers, we’re happy to help, please just ask.

Post written by Kevin Lawless

Wisdom insights from Wireless Economics

For ad hoc insights straight to your inbox

sign up for wisdom