Last year, the U.K.’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) levied a monetary penalty against Reactiv Media for violating the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR), which is the U.K.’s version of our Do-Not-Call regulations.
Reactiv Media appealed the penalty and wound up with an even steeper penalty. As the I.C.O. reports:
Today the Information Rights Tribunal overturned an appeal by Reactiv Media Limited against one of our civil monetary penalties. In fact the Tribunal increased the penalty from £50,000 to £75,000.
In July last year we served Reactiv Media Limited with the fine for making unsolicited marketing calls to people on the Telephone Preference Service (TPS). The TPS had received 481 complaints and we had received 120.
The Tribunal not only agreed with us that the fine was justified but stated there was evidence that showed ‘a culture of denial and minimisation of the breach, weak governance of the company and a tendency to blame others rather than accept responsibility’. Due to the case’s aggravating factors the Tribunal was satisfied the larger penalty was more appropriate.
I wouldn’t be surprised if this outcome makes entities less likely to appeal future monetary penalties issued by the ICO.