GDPR Compliance – The Death of Scraping

GDPR Scraping Blog

Is it still okay to get my marketing data from Google/Linkedin?

We are currently being inundated with stats about relative unpreparedness of business for GDPR when it comes in on May 25th, so here is ours – according to a new report by the Institute of Directors, four in ten aren’t confident their organisation will be ‘fully compliant’ when GDPR kicks in (based on a poll of 700 bosses).

At Koju we talk to a lot of Businesses owners about how they currently obtain their data and, in our opinion, the number in the SME universe is even higher, as many still believe Scraping data from websites is fine. So just to clear things up for everybody…

It is NOT okay to scrape email addresses manually or automated, and send out marketing emails, whether from Linkedin, Google, Facebook or

What is scraping?

The term “scraping” is used to describe the act of manually or automatically extracting a web page’s data, such as contact details – this extracted information is then stored into a file/database (e.g. CRM or excel file). This data is then added to a contact list and marketed to, despite the glaringly omitted permission to do so!

Do we believe it fall into anyone’s reasonable expectations, that by simply owning a Linkedin account, their data can be scraped and put into a marketing list?

In our view, no. GDPR is asking businesses to treat an individual’s personal data with respect and marketing campaigns fall within the reasonable expectation of the recipient.

How to Use Linkedin under GDPR

GDPR isn’t the death of cold outreach – you just need to do things properly and in a fashion that doesn’t contravene people’s personal data – show personal data some respect! What GDPR allows you to do is market within Linkedin as below;

  • Research your targets and send a contact request in the platform
  • Communicate via Linkedin, unless the user gives you consent to call/email them outside of the platform
  • No reply? Move on to the next target

If you are doing this now, feel free to carry on under GDPR, store the consent notice from Linkedin, so if you are asked to demonstrate consent, you can do so.

How to find data without scraping Google?

You have a few options:

  • Obtain consent via lead magnets
  • Read our helpful blog here
  • Seek out a complaint data list provider – such as Koju!

All joking aside – Koju are here to help with any advice on how to gather consent or if you wish to look at purchasing data from our compliant sources – read more about our data here

What about my current data?

GDPR has put a much larger emphasis on a businesses being able to prove that they have consent from a client, hence the current spate of emails from Google, Facebook, etc. asking us to resupply our permission to be marketed to. This will allow them to carry on marketing to those that ‘opt-in’ but any that don’t respond will be deleted, this will most likely result in a drastically reduced, but arguably more effective, marketing list.

Under GDPR – you have two options to process marketing data;

  1. If you are processing your marketing data under consent – GDPR dictates this consent must be “freely given, specific, informed and an unambiguous indication of the individual’s wishes”. If you can’t provide this our recommendation is to delete the offending data to avoid risking potential fines imposed under the new regulation.
  2. When Processing data under Legitimate Interest, Marketeers must weigh up their right as a business to market to someone against the recipients right to privacy. In all cases, a clear opt-out must be offered and a compelling case for why someone may be interested must be established.

Koju Media processes all our data under legitimate interest, so we can help you via our data audit/cleanse service. We can look at the inaccuracies in your database and report back to you where we can flag potentially problematic areas such as data being on the TPS/CTPS schemes, companies that have moved or add intelligence to your data by adding email addresses etc.

Read our data assumptions & best practice blog here or contact us to have a chat about how we can help.

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