Barclays reveals plans to sell customer data to third party companies

Customers will be unable to opt out of data sale plans

Barclays is to make customer data available for commercial purposes for the first time, in changes to its customer agreements that will also see the firm begin tracking mobile devices in order to prevent card fraud.

As part of the Retail Customer Agreement rules, due to come into play in October this year, millions of the bank's customers will have their purchasing information offered to third party firms. The bank told customers that it will "use information about the transactions on your account" with a view to increasing its understanding of services and products that customers may wish to use. Although Barclays has used customer data internally in the past, for the first time data will also be used to produce reports that are then shared with third parties including other companies and government departments.

The bank claims that only anonymised data will be supplied, providing information such as what has been purchased, or where a purchase was made, rather than any individual, personal information. "This data is numerical and not personal, and you will never be identifiable on the basis of it," the customer agreement states.

According to Barclays customers will be unable to opt out of the plans, for which it says has received a green light from the regulators.

"We only use information in a numerical, anonymised and aggregated way as is standard practice at many companies," a spokesperson told ComputerworldUK. "It is not about providing information for sales or marketing use and does not include any personal data."

"This is all in accordance with industry guidance from the Information Commissioner's Office and the law."

Another of the changes highlighted in the customer agreement is the gathering of location information in order to improve fraud detection. This is enabled by 'pinging' a customer's mobile phone to detect which country a customer is in, providing another layer of defence against the fraudulent use of a credit or debit card in a foreign country. The Barclays spokesperson stated that such data will not be used any circumstances other than fraud prevention, and customers will be able to opt out of the service should they wish.

In a statement to ComputerworldUK, Jim Killock of the Open Rights Group contested Barclays' decision to offer sell data to third parties.

"Users need control of their data. Barclays should be asking people to opt in, rather than opt out, of data collection," Killock said. "Barclays' privacy changes are just one more reason why new strong data protection needs to be implemented in Europe."

Killock also suggested that Barclays' plans show that more needs to be done to protect customers in the development of the draft EU Data Protection Regulation, which has faced "immense lobbying", by giving customers more power over the use of their own data.

"As Barclays has been part of the massive lobby effort tabling 4,000 amendments to water the EU regulation down, MEPs should trust Barclays' motives to change the law even less now they can see what the bank thinks meaningful consent and control really means for its customers," he said.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Latest Videos

More Videos

Invest and earn with Coinbloc .us. Guaranteed Weekly ROI, early signals, fast withdrawals among others. I recommend Coinbloc .us as on...

Hans Jensen

Explainer: What marketers need to know about cryptocurrency

Read more

Investment decisions are a big deal, so why not get some guidance? You can day-trade cryptos, BUY and HOLD and evaluate the assets with f...

Dave Sigurd

Gartner: Digital isn't enough of a superpower for CMOs anymore

Read more

I normally don’t feel comfortable investing online but because the company I worked for downsized due to the pandemic and I was one of th...

Dave Sigurd

CMO's top 8 martech stories for the week - 9 June 2022

Read more

Investment decisions are a big deal, so why not get some guidance? You can day-trade cryptos, BUY and HOLD and evaluate the assets with f...

Dave Sigurd

Creating a marketplace for wellness

Read more

A solution for an retail industry data extraction. https://e-scraper.com/usefu...

"e-Scraper" Data Extracting

​Catchoftheday launches fee-based online shopping club

Read more

Blog Posts

2 hidden ingredients for leadership success CMOs need to know

Your success as a senior marketing professional has much in common with your success as a leader. Both marketing, and leadership activities, depend on building trust, encouraging action, and reliably fulfilling promises that have been made.

Gerard Penna

Leadership advisor, coach

How shifting economic trends are impacting digital media

Between further interest rate rises, inflation​, empty shelves, extortionate lettuce prices, supply chain issues and the barely believable events in Eastern Europe, the past six months there’s been a cacophony of environmental factors.

Kieran Reed

Senior digital manager, Alpha Digital

5 ways to turn imposter syndrome into confidence and conviction

Imposter syndrome. That feeling others will discover you are actually not as good as they expect, and at any point you will be exposed and ridiculed as a fraud. If you can relate to this, then you are not alone.

Rowena Millward

Author, consultant

Sign in