The DM Commission, the Judge Dredd of the direct marketing sector which has the power to expel DMA members, has once again warned firms of the need carry out due diligence when it comes to sourcing their marketing data after revealing this issue continues to blight the industry.
According to the DMC’s Annual Report, the regulator investigated 39 cases involving DMA members during 2017. Although the figure is down on the previous year’s 48 cases, it seems the message is still not getting through as 69% of cases still related to marketing data concerns.
They show that complex supply chains are still a cause for concern as the original consent or lack of consent to use the information had been overlooked, in breach of the DMA Code. The remaining complaints were split between contractual (21%) and customer service (10%) issues.
Although the commissioners decided it was necessary to conduct a full formal investigation into just two businesses, finding one in breach of the DMA Code, it insists the cases highlighted the continued issue of offshore suppliers to provide call centre support or lead generation services.
Last week, Decision Marketing revealed that the Information Commissioners’ Office has fined 111 organisations a total of £10.1m for breaking the rules on spam and data protection since it gained new powers in August 2015, with an increase of 69% during 2017 alone, from £2.9m to £6m.
The DMC also used its annual report to reiterate the point that with GDPR coming into force in just over 100 days, UK businesses could face even bigger fines if they fail to ensure compliance.
DMC chief commissioner George Kidd said: “While the volume of complaints remains low, the challenges with data and consents across lengthy value-chains are a cause for concern.
“Here, as with other issues, we seek to balance our responsibility for dealing with the behaviours with individual businesses with the need to look at where and why there is an issue, and to work with the DMA on policy responses across the board, and not just the individual complaint and member company.”
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