So, will Brexit save you from EU data legislation?

So, will Brexit save you from EU data legislation?

EU REF Blog

With the upcoming EU referendum just days away, many businesses will need to consider what impact the result of the referendum will have on data legislation and therefore direct marketing.

April 2016 saw new data laws introduced called the ‘General Data Protection Regulations’ (GDPR), meaning that businesses must:

  • allow data to be transferred to another service provider without vendor lock-in
  • alert users when their data has been hacked
  • empower the right to be forgotten

The new GDPR laws must be enforced by companies in 2018 and heavy fines could be sanctioned if these laws are not applied, but many UK companies admit to not knowing how much time they actually have to implement these changes and what the changes to the law actually indicate.

The alarming research from the Netskope suggests that three quarters of cloud-based data apps currently in use by businesses would fail the future GDPR test on data privacy however the question still remains: ‘If the UK were to leave the EU, would these laws still apply?’.

The misconception, amongst marketers and business owners, seems to be that Brexit will save us all from the upcoming EU GDPR laws.

The truth is a bit more complicated and there may indeed be some areas of these regulations that are not as strictly applied if the UK leaves, however the EU GDPR essentially applies to any business trading within EU countries. Therefore, should the UK leave, businesses would still need to comply with the EU’s regulations when trading with countries in Europe.

It’s best to view these regulations as a step towards best practice. Businesses that put good opt-in systems in place, will not only attract more relevant subscribers to send their marketing communications to, they will ensure their business remains compliant, regardless of the outcome of the referendum. It’s therefore a good idea to start planning for the GDPR sooner rather than later. Adhering to the changes is the only way to be sure that your marketing is future-proof.