From 1 January 2021, the UK will enter a new era entirely outside of the EU, creating fundamental changes to legislation and regulations.

Many firms may be wondering how this may affect their marketing, both in the EU and UK, especially as much of the country’s data protection laws are derived from EU directives.

Up until the end of the transition period on 31 December 2020, the EU GDPR rules continue to apply, after this date UK businesses will need to comply with UK data protection law, which is enshrined within the Data Protection Act 2018.

Thankfully, the Government has indicated that the EU GDPR provisions will be incorporated into UK law from the end of the transition period.

This should mean minimal change from the current GDPR rules for the time being. However, where a firm offers services to or monitors individuals within the EU, which could include tracking the activities of EU based website users on the internet, it will still need to comply with the EU GDPR rules as well.

This may become a more significant issue if UK and EU data protection rules diverge in the future, which may be the case if the UK decides not to incorporate future changes to EU data protection regulations into domestic law.

Data transfers

Things become more complicated, however, when it comes to transferring personal data from the UK to the EEA (European Economic Area).

If the UK fails to achieve a deal by the end of 2020 then it will become a third country under current EU data protection rules. This means that the transfer of personal data could be bound by an adequacy decision, which means that the transfer must meet adequate standards, appropriate safeguard or exception.

If this is the case at the end of the transition period, UK businesses will need to put new mechanisms in place to allow personal data to be sent to them from the EEA lawfully.

This could be critical if a firm hopes to use personal data acquired by a business in the EEA for marketing purposes.

Next steps

Firms must take the time to review the personal data they hold and process and identify personal data transfers they currently make to ensure they have sufficient safeguards in place should a deal not be reached by 31 December 2020.

Practices must also re-evaluate their GDPR compliance procedures and documentation to ensure that it complies with any changes that come as a result of Brexit. This may include reviewing data protection impact assessments, processing activities and privacy policies so that the follow the letter of the law.

It is also important that you inform your clients of these changes, as it could significantly affect their business and how it trades.

To help firms keep their clients up to date on the latest changes and guidance we have put together a dedicated Brexit marketing package, which is packed with useful resources.

Click here to find out how your firm can utilise this package

If you have any additional queries about your marketing approach once the Brexit transition period ends, please contact us.

Categories: Blog