In the UK, meal kit delivery company HelloFresh is facing a £140,000 fine from the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) for sending millions of unsolicited emails and texts to customers.

The ICO’s investigation, sparked by 14 complaints, revealed that HelloFresh sent 79 million emails and one million texts over a period of seven months. Even individuals who had asked for the marketing spam to stop continued to receive communications. 

The behaviour amounted to a “clear breach of trust”, the ICO said. HelloFresh has since claimed that it has altered its email and SMS policy.

“This marked a clear breach of trust of the public by HelloFresh,” said Andy Curry, head of investigations at the ICO.

“Customers weren’t told exactly what they’d be opting into, nor was it clear how to opt out. From there, they were hit with a barrage of marketing texts they didn’t want or expect, and in some cases, even when they told HelloFresh to stop, the deluge continued.” 

As reported by the BBC, former supermarket director and food retail expert Teresa Wickham, stated that the ICO’s investigations would hurt HelloFresh. “It will affect their bottom line,” she said.

“Everyone knows their information is everywhere - this is the world we live in now,” she added.

Know the risks

More than ever, businesses that fall short of data processing laws risk being hit by substantial fines, reputational damage and more. Responsible and compliant data handling is only going to become more complex as organisations embrace evolving technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI). 

Learn more about the opportunities, obligations and risks exclusively at Global Privacy Day this January, when industry experts will discuss the key data privacy challenges of our digital age.

Not to be missed at Global Privacy Day

Constructing an Effective Privacy Initiative for Measurable Outcomes

Date: Thursday Jan 25 2024

Time: 11:30 – 12:00pm GMT

From establishing foundational frameworks to implementing practical strategies, attendees will gain valuable insights into building a privacy initiative that goes beyond compliance, focusing on achieving measurable and impactful outcomes.

Our panellists will delve in to a comprehensive discussion on the key components, successful case studies and actionable steps to create a privacy program that not only safeguards sensitive information but also contributes to organisational success.

Safeguarding AI Data

Date: Thursday Jan 25 2024

Time: 13:30 – 14:00 GMT

This engaging discussion aims to demystify common misconceptions surrounding AI data protection while shedding light on factual insights. Participants will navigate through the intricacies of safeguarding AI-generated data, gaining a comprehensive understanding of essential practices.

Whether you’re an AI enthusiast, a data protection professional or simply curious about the intersection of AI and privacy, this session promises to unravel the complexities and provide practical insights for effective AI data protection.

“Safeguarding AI Data” and “Constructing an Effective Privacy Initiative for Measurable Outcomes’ are just two of the exclusive sessions taking place at Global Privacy Day. 

Click here to see the full agenda

Global Privacy Day

Taking place virtually on 25 January 2024, as part of Data Privacy Day, Global Privacy Day will bring together thought leaders and senior industry professionals to discuss the present landscape of data protection and privacy and the current and future challenges that professionals are up against.

This one-day event will provide a platform for attendees to network, exchange ideas, gain insight into the latest developments in the field of privacy, and the opportunity to discuss strategies and best practices to ensure the protection of data.

Click here to register for free for Global Privacy Day