Monday, 15 July 2013

HnH comply with Data Protection Act after Nope not Hope pressure, but who knows who will get your data?

Good news - sort of - for those who value their privacy in the internet.

After our story last month about Hope not Hate breaching the European Data Protection Directive  and the Data Protection Act, they have finally added a privacy and cookie statement to their website. Never ones to spend money when a cheapskate solution is available - they need the cash for the purposes of champagne socialism - they have opted for a free of charge solution available from the achingly right-on and inclusive 'Civic UK' company.

The option they have chosen ensures that visitors to their site still don't know what information is gathered by their cookies, and there is no option to browse without them - there is a Hobson's Choice of 'take it or leave it'.

Still, it is a start even if only a small one, and an acknowledgement that after a call from the Information Commissioner's office, even Hope not Hate are required to adhere to the law. We may have to wait a while to discover exactly what information HnH are harvesting though, as they have still failed to provide any information on what the multiple cookies they run actually do and what information they store.

Hope not Hate have also finally got around to publishing their privacy policy. It all sounds good - they will not share your information or sell or rent out their mailing list without your prior approval. Sadly, this rather contradicts the tacit permission you give if you do contact them, where the privacy statement says they will not share your personal information with anyone not connected with the Hope not Hate campaign. This rather broad, catch-all statement would allow them to pass your details on to the Daily Mirror (who help fund them), the Labour Party (likewise), Unite, Unison, NUT, NUJ, and a whole host of other trades unions. Who knows, if you live in the right area, you could even find yourself signed up as a Labour Party member by one of the unions.

The end result is that while Hope not Hate are playing lip service to complying with the law, their
broadly worded 'privacy policy' pretty much lets them pass any data you give them on to just about anybody. If you have contacted them, look forward to receiving anti-UKIP e-mails from a whole host of organisations ahead of next year's European elections.

It is worth remembering that Hope not Hate's 'technology consultants' are Blue State Digital, who are also employed by the Labour Party, and whose director is the Labour Party's favoured candidate in the Falkirk selection scandal currently gripping the Labour Party. Who knows what will happen to your information if they get their hands on it?

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