Leave.EU faces big fine over data law breaches

Information commissioner reveals Leave.EU was fined a total of £75,000 for “serious breaches”

Brexit

The information commissioner, Elizabeth Denham, has revealed large fines for data misuse in the run-up to the EU referendum in 2016.

As explained on the commissioner's website, a move has been made to fine two companies a total of 135,000. Both Leave.EU and the Eldon Insurance company owned by the Brexit-backing Aaron Banks were fined 60,000 apiece for "serious breaches" of laws dictating electronic marketing. In addition, Leave.EU received an extra 15,000 fine for sending 300,000 emails to Eldon customers promoting Brexit.

Advertisement - Article continues below

"More than one million emails were sent to Leave.EU subscribers over two separate periods which also included marketing for GoSkippy [the trading name for Eldon] services, without their consent. This was a breach of PECR regulation 22," the report reads.

"We have issued a preliminary enforcement notice to Eldon Insurance under s40 of the DPA1998, requiring the company to take specified steps to comply with PECR regulation 22. We will follow this up with an audit of the company."

The report leaves the door to further action, with other investigations ongoing. "We are investigating allegations that Eldon Insurance Services Limited shared customer data obtained for insurance purposes with Leave.EU," the report reads, adding that the ICO is "still considering the evidence in relation to a breach of principle seven of the DPA1998 for the company's overall handling of personal data."

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below

It isn't just the Leave side under investigation, though. "We are still looking at how the Remain side of the referendum campaign handled personal data, including the electoral roll, and will be considering whether there are any breaches of data protection or electoral law requiring further action," the report reads. "We investigated the collection and sharing of personal data by Britain Stronger in Europe and a linked data broker. We specifically looked at 11 inadequate third party consents and the fair processing statements used to collect personal data."

Advertisement - Article continues below

Amidst these words for those on both sides of the referendum battle, the ICO also highlighted the activities of Cambridge Analytica, writing that the company would be facing a "substantial fine for very serious breaches of principle one of the DPA1998" had it not already gone into administration following the scandal.

Featured Resources

The case for a marketing content hub

Transform your digital marketing to deliver customer expectations

Download now

Fast, flexible and compliant e-signatures for global businesses

Be at the forefront of digital transformation with electronic signatures

Download now

Why CEOS should care about the move to SAP S/4HANA

And how they can accelerate business value

Download now

IT faces new security challenges in the wake of COVID-19

Beat the crisis by learning how to secure your network

Download now
Advertisement

Most Popular

Visit/operating-systems/microsoft-windows/355812/microsoft-warns-against-installing-windows-10-may-2020
Microsoft Windows

Microsoft warns users not to install Windows 10's May update

28 May 2020
Visit/infrastructure/server-storage/355785/dell-emc-poweredge-r7525-review-an-epyc-core-density-to-make
Server & storage

Dell EMC PowerEdge R7525 review: An EPYC core density to make Intel weep

26 May 2020
Visit/infrastructure/network-internet/355792/intel-releases-wi-fi-and-bluetooth-driver-updates-for
Network & Internet

Intel releases Wi-Fi and Bluetooth driver updates for Windows 10

26 May 2020