What's the Connection Between GDPR and Fundraising?

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If you are a charity fundraising organization, it’s almost impossible to avoid handling and storing individuals' personal data. 

Some instances of data usage occur while taking donations and recording individuals' addresses and contact details. Also, you store the data to send prospects direct messages in the future or use publicly available data to research and contact new donors. 

These use cases are part of what GDPR refers to as ‘processing’ personal data. As an organization that processes individuals' data, you have legal obligations and responsibilities on how and why you use those data. This is to ensure that you don't infringe on the privacy rights of those individuals.

Let's see how GDPR impacts fundraising. 

How does the GDPR cookie consent script work 

The term "GDPR cookie consent" has gained popularity since the GDPR took effect in 2018. 

Regulations requirements are most times confusing especially for small business owners and website publishers who don't have an official legal team. To stay compliant with the GDPR cookie consent, you need to place a cookie banner on your website's home page. 

Users need to understand the cookie present on your website and the information you collect before they accept/reject the cookie. Most organizations use consent scripts to stay compliant with all the GDPR requirements. 

The cookie consent script GDPR ensures you comply with regulations and avoid the penalties of noncompliance. By utilizing the consent script your website will stay compliant with the most recent data privacy standards. 

How does GDPR impact fundraising

GDPR has a significant effect on charity and non-profit organizations as it deals with data controllers and data processors. 

  • A data controller is any organization that processes data and is in charge of deciding how and why to do so. 

  • A data processor is an organization that handles data processing on behalf of a data controller.

As we stated earlier, when an organization engages in charity fundraising, it usually stores and uses people's personal information. This happens while collecting donations, keeping track of donors' addresses and contact information, and sending them future direct marketing messages. It also includes searching for and contacting new supporters with publicly accessible information.

So, under GDPR, charities and non-profit organizations have legal obligations and responsibilities regarding how they use people's data. This is to guarantee that they respect individual privacy rights.

What happens if an online fundraising organization is not GDPR compliant?

If any online fundraising organizations violate the GDPR cookie consent regulation, they'll be subject to penalties. 

Cookie consent is crucial to online fundraisers as most online fundraising organizations use cookies on their websites. It helps them to smoothly run their website and understand how people relate to their website. 

Cookies also help them to track their marketing strategies. However, they need to seek consent from users to comply with legislation. An organization that breaches the GDPR will be subject to fines of up to 4% of its yearly global turnover or €20 million–depending on whichever is higher. 

Every organization that processes individuals' data has a legal obligation under GDPR. The aim is to ensure that they have the appropriate policies and measures to guarantee that they function appropriately and value people's rights.

The GDPR applies to every organization that handles the personal data of EU citizens regardless of their location.

Possible consequences of GDPR noncompliance include injunctions against data processing, a halt to data transfers, and fines of up to 20 million euros, which can be $23.2 million, or 4% of a company's annual global revenue. 

A risk-based approach to data processing operations is mandated by GDPR. Security may not always be a company's primary focus, even though most businesses acquire and use users' data. 

To achieve compliance, businesses must learn and put the GDPR's major requirements into practice. 

Here are some tips for GDPR compliance includes:

To demonstrate compliance with GDPR, organizations must perform routine audits of their privacy protection procedures. It is necessary to maintain current records of all data they keep, the processing methods, information transfers to other nations, and data protection. 

Conduct routine risk assessment to recognize if a data processing procedure, supporting documentation, and privacy policies require updating. Plus, the IT infrastructure's security must also be up to date.

Aim to appoint an independent data protection officer (DPO) to manage how you process or handle the personal data you collect. 

The DPO's main responsibility is to guarantee that the organization handles all personal data in compliance with applicable data protection laws. It also applies to workers, clients, suppliers, and any other individual's data. 

This involves training staff members in the data processing team. It also includes educating the organization and its workforce about compliance. 

The DPO keeps track of every data processing operation and performs routine security audits. Plus, the DPO serves as the company's point of contact with supervisory authorities.

Organizations need to confirm the data on the days in their possession to guarantee its confidentiality, integrity, and availability. 

Make a data inventory that enables stakeholders to accurately identify the type, value, and classification of the data in their care. 

When you categorize and mark it as personally identifiable information (PII),  it is simpler to provide security and privacy protection.

Aim to get consent in compliance with GDPR requirements if you are relying on it to process individuals' data. If not, change your consent processes or come up with a substitute.

The GDPR requires data controllers to provide proof of consent. Thus, it's crucial to check your procedures to get consent. 

Aim to orient employees on the organization's privacy policy and the principles of personal data as they resume duties. 

Any person who takes part in handling data needs to understand their role in maintaining data security. An excellent practice that ensures data security is holding refresher lessons. 

Protect the rights of partners and donors by complying with GDPR consent regulation 

GDPR results in the modifications and improvements of individuals' data security. 

Hence, fundraising organizations must guarantee the privacy protection of their data subjects. Companies that process individuals' data need to ensure they protect the individual's data in their care by complying with the necessary legislation. 

An excellent way to protect rights is by adhering to cookie consent regulations. So, every fundraising institution will have to regard the rights of donors and partners to stay compliant. 

Author's Bio 

Jennifer Nwokolo is an SEO content writer for B2B and SaaS brands. She has helped a lot of brands tell their stories and expand their reach.

She upholds that the ideal content comprises the balance of information, entertainment, and SEO. She is steadily building a community of individuals who love reading great content.

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