Data Protection

Summary

  • Charities appear to be doing better than average in reducing unwanted mail
  • BUT You are still not confident charities are taking proper care of your data
    • In particular only 38% are confident their data is not being passed or sold on without their permission
  • You prefer that charities communicate by email, followed by website and post. Least favoured is the telephone!

 

  • Respondents are actually pleased to receive information from charities about future plans (77%) and how their money has been spent (81%) and how it has changed lives (74%).
    • Fewer (15%) are pleased to receive requests for funds although 54% ‘do not mind’ so long as the requests are not too frequent nor ask for more information than necessary
  • Apart from the Telephone Preference Service and the Data Protection Act none of the regulations surrounding your information are well known or understood.
  • 70% of you have never heard of the Fundraising Preference Service which allows you to restrict your communications to receive only information and not marketing materials.
  • We asked a series of questions about the existing rules and discovered there is a great deal of misunderstanding of your rights and entitlements and the legal standing of the services that exist to protect you.

 

Do you currently receive more or less promotional or 'junk' mail than you did a year ago?

For the purposes of this question, we defined mail as being both email and postal mail.

 

Base. All respondents

Receipt of junk mail in general was twice as likely to have increased as decreased (net 19% of respondents had seen an increase).  Mail from charities however had remained very constant with the exception of fundraising mail which had increased slightly (net 5% had seen an increase).

How confident are you that the charity sector is doing the right things to protect you in the following situations 

Respondents were generally not confident that organisations would look after their data securely and use it only for the purposes for which it was given.

Highest confidence (at 48%) was that organisations would ‘Keep my data secure against identity theft and cyber attack’ but lowest confidence level (at 38%) was for them ‘Not passing or selling my data to other organisations.

There are many areas, some of which are either illegal or generally disapproved of, that are obviously still of concern. Many said that charities are not all the same, there are good ones and bad ones. Problems mentioned by more than one or two respondents include:-

 

 

Duplication, either sending by both email and post (inefficient and wasteful) or duplicated mailings (indicating a poorly cleaned and maintained database).

 

Asking for too much, often seemingly unnecessary, information. 

 

Holding data for too long. 

 

Having to uncheck boxes to decline a particular service/product. 

 

Failure to spend money on the appeal for which it was requested (or switching appeals). 

 

Concerns about data sharing/selling mentioned by many who felt it had happened even when they had requested not. 

 

Some charities send far too frequent information and funding requests. 

 

Failure (or inability) to respond to requests for no contact or only email contact. 

 

Use of third party companies to maintain databases and fundraise, often leading to pressurised selling. 

 

How trustworthy would you consider these organisations in looking after your personal data?

Trustworthiness of different groups of organisation where score ranges from 5 = Very trustworthy to 0 = Very untrustworthy

The church can be pleased with its position but maybe charities in general should be concerned that they are seen as less trustworthy than financial institutions and the government.

Have you heard of the following regulations and to what extent do you understand their purpose?

 

Mailing preference service (MPS)

1983

Data Protection Act

1984

Telephone preference service (TPS)

1999

Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR)

2003

Fundraising preference service (FPS)

2017

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

2018

 

How well do you know your rights concerning your personal data?

  Are the following statements True or False?

 

Q21       A charity cannot share my data with another charity without my permission.
  
TRUE
With one or two exemptions (such as giving information to the police in criminal cases) a charity may not disclose personal data to third parties without your specific permission.

 

Q22       Charities must legally check the Mailing preference service before sending me promotional mail

FALSE
Unlike the Telephone Preference Service there is no legal requirement to check this although doing so is part of the code of practice of members of the Direct Marketing Association and others.

 

Q23       Charities have exemption from some of the stricter parts of data protection act  

FALSE
This is completely false, charities are treated exactly the same as any other organisation under the Data Protection Act

 

Q24       If I recommend a charity contacts a friend I can insist they keep my name confidential

FALSE
Respondents were split on this one although a small majority (60%) got it right. The friend has the right to know the source of the data (i.e. his contact details) under the right of subject access, created by section 7 of the Data Protection Act.     

 

Q25       If I sign up for the Telephone Preference Service this prevents ANY organisation from phoning me

TRUE
The fact that 75% of respondents got this wrong is probably because it is so frequently abused in practice. In fact it is a legal requirement that all organisations do not make sales or marketing calls to numbers registered on the TPS unless they have your consent to do so.

 

Q26       A charity must tell me specifically what they are going to use my data for

TRUE
The Data Protection act says personal data shall only be used for specified and lawful purposes

 

Q27       I can opt out of fundraising requests but still receive general information from my charity

TRUE
Most (77%) were aware of this.  Even though 70% ‘had not heard of’ the Fundraising Preference service they seemed to be aware of its implications. The FPS will enable you to stop marketing communications from a charity but still enable you to receive such items as a magazine.

 

Do you agree or disagree with the following data rules?

What sort of communications do you want from a charity you support

 

 

How do you prefer to communicate with a charity you support?

 Preference relative to top choice of email.

 

How frequently is it acceptable to be contacted by a charity you support

Demographics

Denomination

Anglican/Church of England

43.46%

Baptist

12.75%

Catholic

3.70%

Independent

9.15%

Methodist

9.26%

New Church

2.61%

Pentecostal

3.49%

Presbyterian

0.87%

Prefer not to say

2.18%

Other

12.53%

Totals

100.00%

 

Age

16 - 24

0.44%

25 - 34

2.83%

35 - 44

4.68%

45 - 54

15.90%

55 - 64

32.90%

65 - 74

32.46%

75 or over

8.71%

Prefer not to say

2.07%

Totals

100.00%

 

Region

East Midlands

5.01%

East of England

6.32%

London

8.28%

North East

3.70%

North West

8.61%

South East 

27.23%

South West

10.57%

West Midlands

9.37%

Yorkshire & Humberside

6.21%

Wales

4.14%

Scotland

3.70%

Northern Ireland

0.76%

Other

6.10%

Totals

100.00%

 

Gender

Male

56.10%

Female

43.68%

Other

0.22%

Prefer not to say

0.00%

Totals

100.00%

 

 Sample of Resonate panel, 1094 respondents interviewed in August 2017