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GDPR could render 75% of dealers’ customer data useless

GDPR business closed tape across a laptop screen

Up to three-quarters of the customer data held by car brands will become useless on May 25 2018, according to data cleansing specialist W8 Data.

The introduction of General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) - the subject of a special conference for dealers at the Double Tree, Milton Keynes, in February - changes the current consent requirements which will see a requirement for customers to opt-in to communications, with a clear affirmative action required, by May 2018.

W8 Data’s director, Dave Lee, said: “It’s unsurprising that repermissioning campaigns are rocketing as automotive companies are waking up to the realisation that much of their data will be useless come May 2018.

“However, what is crucial moving forwards is that the opted-in data is quality checked and well maintained, otherwise it risks becoming uncompliant and unusable."

W8 Data claims that a recent data audit found that only 25% of existing customer data meets the requirements specified under GDPR.

To use existing data marketers must be satisfied that it meets the new standard and have a fully documented permission trail including the data and source of the consent.

The audit also found that one in three automotive marketing campaigns are now focused around securing compliant consents, with customer acquisition, customer retention and brand building now taking a back seat.

Additionally, research found that currently only 35% of organisations in general have a regular data cleansing process in place that includes suppression, deduplication and permission management.

Lee said: “The fact that two-thirds of organisations are currently failing to regularly refresh their data speaks volumes and under GDPR is something that is going to have to change.”

  • AM will host a GDPR conference covering the major aspects of the new EU legislation at the Hilton Doubletree, Milton Keynes, on 22nd February 2018.

The speakers include data experts from the Direct Marketing Association and cyber security experts.

For more information about the event – or to confirm your attendance by booking a place – visit

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