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Who needs consent under GDPR?

Everything hangs on consent under GDPR, right? We can't process any personal data without it.

Not true. While the rules on consent are certainly much tougher under GDPR, the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) has made clear that consent is only needed if you're relying on it as the legal basis to process personal data.

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Put simply, having consent is one way of making sure you are compliant with GDPR but there are other options which may be more appropriate for your organisation. Let's run through them…

Familiarise yourself with these other conditions to ensure lawful processing of data under GDPR:

processing of data under gdpr

  1. Processing is necessary for the performance of a contract - for example, collecting a customer's name and address in order to process their order
  2. Processing is necessary for legal or judicial reasons - for example, for administering justice or law enforcement, such as using their bank details to process a refund
  3. Processing is necessary to protect the data subject’s vital interests - as in a life or death situation where someone's medical history is made available to treat them in an A&E department after a road accident
  4. Processing is necessary to perform a task carried out in the public interest - for example, exercising statutory, governmental or public functions (collecting taxes, etc)
  5. Processing is necessary for legitimate interests pursued by the controller or a third party, except where such interests are overridden by the interests, rights or freedoms of the data subject - for example, where a finance company uses a debt collection agency to track down a customer who has moved without telling them of a change of address. There is a legitimate interest to recover the debt.

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