Broker News


RSS Feed


Expert View – on Data Protection:

Main Image

Q. What’s the difference between Consent and Legitimate Interest as a legal basis for policy renewals / existing customers?

We put this question to David Nunn, our Deputy Head Of Data Protection, who explains in layman’s terms below the difference.

A.“Fundamentally, the difference is that for Consent, a customer has to explicitly opt in; and for Legitimate Interest, they have to explicitly opt out.  Most people do neither, so the default for Legitimate Interest would be a significantly wider reach.

“Legitimate Interest allows a business to balance their needs as a company with the impact and interests of their existing customers.  If the marketing campaign serves the interests of the business, or our partners, and the end customer, on balance, then it would be ‘legitimate’ (ie. reasonable) to market to those customers in areas they have expressed an interest in, or previously purchased from, unless they have ‘opted out’ of marketing.  We are not allowed to market totally irrelevant products to them, such as pet products to a windscreen replacement customer – this would require Consent still.

“We’ve been running a trial in one area of our business and have found that switching to Legitimate Interest has significantly increased our marketing reach to existing customers.

If you would like further information on this, or would like to talk to a member of our Group Data Protection team, please email us at



Leave Comment