Fundraising Regulator publishes Code Consultation on Data Protection

The Fundraising Regulator has today announced the opening of a Code Consultation on Data Protection.

Austin Clark | 9th Oct 17
Fundraising Regulator

The Fundraising Regulator has today announced the opening of a Code Consultation on Data Protection. The consultation will enable charities, fundraisers and members of the public to provide feedback on proposed changes to the code regarding data protection.

The consultation seeks to update the Code not only to mirror the upcoming GDPR legislation, but also to address the issues identified in the number of penalty notices levied by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) in the last two years.

The consultation will run from October to December of this year and marks an important step in ensuring that the Fundraising Regulator’s guidance and terminology is consistent with forthcoming GDPR legislation.

As well as ensuring the Code adheres to GDPR, proposed changes also include making sure rules on data protection are more accessible by improving signposting to existing ICO and Fundraising Regulator guidance, as well as adding and expanding definitions for key terms.

Additionally, as per the recommendations of the NCVO working group into charities’ relationship with donors, the Fundraising Regulator wants to address calls for greater clarity on legitimate interest. Therefore, three new sections have been proposed for the Code:

  • Legitimate Interest: Incorporating GDPR and recommendations by the NCVO working group on donor communications
  • Processing: Emphasising that, where activities are conducted using an individual’s personal data, this will count as ‘processing’ and data protection rules will apply
  • Consent: Incorporating draft ICO GDPR guidance from May 2018

The Code is expected to be finalised in spring of next year, when it will be published and the changes implemented.

Suzanne McCarthy, Chair of the Fundraising Regulator’s Standard Committee said: “Protecting personal data is a fundamental part of meeting the key principles of legal, open, honest and respectful fundraising within the Code. We welcome views on whether the changes proposed are clear in communicating fundraisers’ legal and ethical responsibilities on data.”