The Dutch Chamber of Trade (KvK) is to stop selling bulk address lists to third parties following the intervention of the Dutch privacy watchdog Autoriteit Persoonsgegevens.
The sale of the information to companies which use the addresses and phone number for cold calling contravenes privacy legislation, the AP said.
The KvK now plans to make it more complicated for third parties to gather address information but it will retain the option to sell details, spokeswoman Hester Schoppert told broadcaster NOS.
‘But we will stop selling the most basic information product which is often used for direct marketing,’ she said.
The AP is also calling for a change in the law to better protect the information of freelancers and the self-employed which is held by the KvK.
In January the KvK won this year’s Big Brother Award for selling the personal information of self-employed people to advertisers.
‘People are really irritated if they have to register as a company and then are phoned continuously by salesmen and women,’ said Hans de Zwart, director of privacy lobby group Bits of Freedom, which organises the awards.
Last year, the KvK said it would remove phone numbers from its public directories because they are being used for cold-call marketing.
Four in 10 self-employed people consulted by the KvK said they are frequently bothered by telephone marketeers and in nearly four in five times, the approach is made by phone.
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