New data legislation on the horizon

New EU data protection legislation is being introduced in May 2018 and Dragon2000 has warned that if garages and workshops are not compliant, they could face fines of up to four per cent of their turnover.

The new legislation will affect the way garages and workshops collect and use individuals’ personal data. Individuals are going to be given more protection under the new EU legislation GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) which will replace the Data Protection Act 1998.

These new GDPR guidelines will strengthen individual’s data protection rights compared with the current legislation covering personal data. Consent, profiling, transparency and administrative fines will all be up for public consultation ahead of the regulations being finalised and published.

Mark Kelland, commercial manager at Dragon2000 commented, ‘Garages and workshops need to be aware of the changes to data protection and should start putting in place the new measures that will be come into effect next year. One major change is a ban of the use of pre-ticked opt-in boxes for marketing purposes, which means failure to opt out will not constitute consent. Garages and workshops will need to keep clear records to demonstrate individuals’ consent.

‘Individuals must also explicitly agree to their data being used for different purposes. For example, the consent for using their details for a prize draw competition will not extend beyond that specific purpose to use the details for sending them information on special offers, or other marketing.

‘Furthermore, the regulations will cover profiling, which many garages and workshops may think is limited to social media or internet search history, but will apply to data collected from existing customer relationships and their buying habits, which could impact dealers who use this information in their marketing activities.

‘The Information Commissioner’s Office is encouraging businesses to review how they are seeking, obtaining and recording consent and whether they need to make any changes in the run up to the commencement of the regulations in May 2018.’