Germany - new case law on unsolicited emails to customers

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Germany: New case law on unsolicited emails to customers

Published 8 April 2015

In Germany, generally a recipient's consent is required before an email is sent to a private email address for marketing purposes. 

Recently a local Düsseldorf court has gone further by ruling that an unsolicited feedback request was not only a breach of privacy law, but was a more serious breach than the sending of a straightforward marketing email.

However, a ruling by a district court in Stuttgart ruled that breach of the sending of an automatic confirmation of receipt was not a breach of privacy law as although it did contain advertisements as well as the receipt confirmation, it was initiated by the inquiry of the customer and so was permitted.

What action could be taken to manage risks that may arise from this development?

Companies should ensure that even feedback requests sent to German data subjects are only sent if the recipient has provided clear consent to their receipt.

Part of our Information Security and Data Protection Newsletter and our Information Security and Data Protection Newsletter for Financial Services.

Authors

Rhiannon Webster

Rhiannon Webster

London - Minster Court

+44 (0)20 7894 6577

Hans Allnutt

Hans Allnutt

London - Minster Court

+44 (0) 20 7894 6925

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