This week through the helpline, we had a call from a company who had used legitimate interests to scrape email addresses from the web, and then send them marketing information. They explained that marketing emails were in their interests and the interests of the person emailed so they could place their services and goods on the caller’s platform for sale.

There are very specific rules about email marketing both in data Protection legislation and in the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR). These rules set out the conditions for sending marketing emails. The rules can be complex depending on who you are emailing.

Just because an email address is publicly available on a website or on LinkedIn or any other platform, does not mean that you can automatically use it for marketing. The company that called the helpline had sent 700 emails to various people’s email addresses that they had found and had already had five complaints in less than 24 hours. One complainant threatening to go to the Information Commissioner’s Office.

Bear in mind, although legitimate interest is a lawful basis that can be used it is not always appropriate for marketing and you may need consent for some forms of marketing emails.

If you need to know more, just drop us a line.