Polish DPA: Withdrawal of consent shall not be impeded

6 November 2019

The President of the Personal Data Protection Office imposed an administrative fine of over PLN 201,000 for, inter alia, obstructing the exercise of the right to withdraw consent to the processing of personal data.

The company - ClickQuickNow Sp. z o.o. did not implement appropriate technical and organizational measures that would enable easy and effective withdrawal of consent to the processing of personal data and the exercise of the right to obtain the erasure of personal data (the "right to be forgotten"). Thus, it violated the principles of lawfulness, fairness and transparency of processing of personal data, specified in the GDPR.

The President of the Personal Data Protection Office (PDPO) found that the company's actions were also inconsistent with Article 7(3) of the GDPR. The company did not take into account the principle that withdrawal of consent should be as easy as giving consent - on the contrary, it applied complicated organisational and technical solutions with regard to the withdrawal of consent. Moreover, the company did not facilitate the exercise of the subject rights, as required by Article 12(2) of the GDPR.

The proceedings of the President of PDPO established that the company violated the abovementioned provisions of the GDPR, because the mechanism of the consent withdrawal, involving the use of a link included in the commercial information, did not result in a quick withdrawal. After the link was set up, messages addressed to the person interested in withdrawing consent were misleading. Moreover, the company forced stating the reason for withdrawing consent, which is not required by the law. Furthermore, failure to indicate the reason resulted in discontinuation of the process of withdrawing consent.

In his decision, the President of the PDPO also pointed out that the company processed, without any legal basis, the data of data subjects, who are not its customers and from whom the company received objections to processing their personal data. Thus, it also violated the so-called "right to be forgotten".

When determining the amount of the administrative fine, the President of the PDPO did not take into account any mitigating circumstances affecting the final penalty. He also decided that the company's action was intentional - providing contradictory communications to the data subject interested in withdrawing consent resulted in an ineffective withdrawal of consent. In this way, the company made it difficult, or even impossible, to exercise the rights of the data subjects.

The President of PDPO not only imposed an administrative fine on the company, but also ordered it to adjust the process of processing requests for withdrawing consent to data processing to the provisions of the GDPR. ClickQuickNow Sp. z o.o. has 14 days from the date of delivery of the decision to comply with the decision. The company must also delete the data of data subjects who are not its customers and objected to processing the personal data concerning them.

To read the press release in Polish, click here

The Polish text of the decision is available here

For further information, please contact the Polish DPA: kancelaria@uodo.gov.pl 

The press release published here does not constitute official EDPB communication, nor an EDPB endorsement. This press release was originally published by the national supervisory authority and was published here at the request of the SA for information purposes. As the press release is represented here as it appeared on the SA's website or other channels of communication, the news item is only available in English or in the Member State's official language with a short introduction in English. Any questions regarding this press release should be directed to the supervisory authority concerned.