What is GDPR and will your club get fined?

Posted by Jane Thompson on 23/10/2017

Find out about the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and what your club will need to do to comply with the law.

This article will give you an introduction to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the first steps that you need to take to ensure that your club is GDPR compliant.

GDPR will be replacing the Data Protection Act 1998 and will become law in the UK on 25 May 2018.

All mountaineering clubs will need to comply with the regulations or penalties could be imposed, including very big fines.  GDPR will apply to you whether you pay staff or are all volunteers, whether you have a hut or not, whether you have 10 members or 1000 members………… there are no exemptions!

GDPR is already here and the period from now up to May 2018 is for implementing any changes that organisations need to make to become ‘GDPR compliant’.

Over the coming weeks there will be new articles and advice posted on the BMC website, in the clubs section, to support clubs to become ‘GDPR compliant’.

What is GDPR and why change from the Data Protection Act 1998?

Changes to data protection regulations are required as the advances in technology over recent years and the different ways that personal data is now processed (collected, stored, shared, etc.) with this new technology need to be included.

GDPR will give EU* citizens more control over how their personal data is used.  It will make it clearer for organisations (including both businesses and clubs) to understand their data protection requirements.  However, it will also bring very hefty fines for those who ignore or break the rules – up to 20million euros can be levied.
[* this includes UK citizens as GDPR will still be UK law after Brexit]

How will it affect my club?

The reason that all clubs need to comply is that clubs collect data about its members – name, address, e-mail address, telephone number etc.  For some clubs additional data may be collected such as data of birth, gender, emergency contact details or medical information (i.e. knowing that someone is asthmatic in case there is an issue on the hills).

If your club is fully compliant with the Data Protection Act (DPA) then you may only have minor changes to make to be compliant with GDPR.

Steps to ensure that you are ‘GDPR compliant’

These are the first steps that you need to take to check out what you do as a club with the data that you hold. Over the coming weeks more information will be posted on the BMC website.

  1. Consider what data you hold: who holds it and who has access to it?
  2. Consider where that data came from: how is it up-dated, how regularly it is up-dated, how long you hold it for?
  3. Consider what you do with the data: who you give it to, how do you transfer it to other people/organisations (including transfer to the BMC)?
  4. Consider the security of data: where do you hold data, what data do you encrypt/password protect?
  5. Do you have permissions from your members to do what you do with their data, when was that permission (consent) given?
  6. Do you have a data protection policy, is it adhered to, is it current?

Working through the points above will give the club a good understanding of current practices and may identify some issues that you will need to deal with.

Over the next few months there will be regular updates and guidance about how to become GDPR compliant.  Check out www.thebmc.co.uk/gdpr-mountaineering-clubs for the links to other articles.

For more information contact Jane Thompson, BMC Clubs Officer on jane@thebmc.co.uk, 07885 910606


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