The UKâs opt-out for telemarketing is under the threat | DMA

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The UKâs opt-out for telemarketing is under the threat


Hard-line positions in the EU could mean an opt-in consent is required

The European Union (EU) is currently reviewing the ePrivacy Directive. The EU Commission have proposed a new ePrivacy Regulation.

This will replace the UK’s own Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR), which is informed by the current ePrivacy Directive.

Before the ePrivacy Regulation becomes law the EU Council of Minister’s and EU Parliament will need to agree on a final version of the text. The Council of Minister’s represent the EU’s national governments and the EU Parliament is directly elected by EU citizens.

The Commission proposed making telemarketing a default opt-in consent channel, similar to how SMS and email marketing are under PECR. However, individual countries can decide to make telemarketing an opt-out, if they so wish.

Threats on the telemarketing industry are growing. While some degree of flexibility still exists in the legislative proposal, many EU decision makers are clearly favouring the opt-in solution, and will protect the UK's opt-out. The new legislation could impose a general opt-in for telemarketing in the EU, making it mandatory for telemarketers to obtain the individual’s consent prior to calling.

It is vital now that the telemarketing industry does not deviate from its best practices. Telephone Preference services List should be used to ensure that your telemarketing lists are cleaned, in particular in cross border situations.

The DMA is also clear that requiring an opt-in consent for telemarketing will do little to stop nuisance calls. Those rogue companies that flout the law to make calls already ignore the Telephone Preference Service and would ignore a general opt-in rule too.

Should you have any questions regarding the ePrivacy Regulation please contact our External Affairs Manager, Zach Thornton.

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