Is a work email address personal data under GDPR? Employment Law

The short answer is, yes it is personal data. Most work email address state your name, as well as the place that you work, clearly identifying you and, therefore, qualifying as personal data. However, an employer does not need consent to use your work email address or access your work emails, for example, for disciplinary purposes.

In contrast generic business email addresses (e.g. enquiry@ or info@) are not personal data. While email addresses that relate to a sole trader or a non-limited liability partnership are personal data if an individual can be identified from the email address.

When it comes to using a business email address for marketing purposes, it is the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR) that sit alongside current data protection legislation, which govern how an organisation can use email addresses for marketing by email, telephone, text or fax.

GDPR applies to how personal data, including email addresses, is processed, while PECR gives further guidance on how that data can be used for electronic and telephone marketing purposes.

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