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InfoLawUpdate - Love is in the Air?

Burnetts' information law solicitor Natalie Ruane comments on the latest information law developments.

Love is in the Air?

The Information Commissioners Office (ICO) is advising consumers of the importance of reading terms and conditions for dating websites. Over the past few years there have been a significant rise in the number of companies providing online dating services. The message delivered by the ICO to consumers comes after a push to ensure that online dating websites are complying with the provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998.

Dating websites take a lot of personal information (sometimes sensitive) from consumers and therefore it is vitally important that consumers know how that data will be processed and stored.

The ICO wrote to the four leading UK-based dating websites, including Match.com, reminding them of their obligations. The response has been positive with the companies starting to take action, including;

  • Reviewing privacy policies and terms and conditions;
  • Removing any kind of suggestions that the websites has ‘perpetual’ or ‘irrevocable’ rights over personal data;
  • Ensuring compliance with the law regarding cookies
  • The ICO will continue working with the sector to ensure proper compliance. 

In light of the ‘dating craze’ it is obviously an important area for the ICO to monitor and help provide appropriate protection for consumers.

About the author

Natalie Ruane profile photo

Natalie Ruane

Natalie is a Partner and leads the Employment Law & HR team and specialises in education.

Published: Tuesday 11th March 2014

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