Guide to stamping out junk mail
The Data Protection Act gives you the right to ask any organisation in the UK to stop 'processing your personal information for direct marketing purposes'. It's a very effective way of stopping addressed junk mail, albeit a somewhat time-consuming one.
Whenever you give your name and address to a potential junk mailer, for instance when you buy a product or make a donation to a charity, always search the small print for marketing tick boxes. And, be prepared for the trick box.
After a one-year grace period the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) has started enforcing the 'cookie law'. In practice nothing much will change; the rules have already been relaxed.
A recommendation by the Political and Constitutional Reform Committee to abolish the edited electoral register has received a lukewarm response from Government; it is
considering the finely balanced arguments.
The House of Commons Political and Constitutional Reform Committee has no doubt about it: the edited electoral register should be abolished.
Which? has accused marketeers of not being clear about how they use people's personal details. The consumer champion would like to see "simple, truthful and transparent tick boxes for marketing purposes".
The Institute of Fundraising has accused 22 charities of using "poor direct marketing practices". However, it can only 'privately ask the charities to mend their ways'.
The Information Commissioner's Office has taken enforcement action against the Liberal Democrats after the party made 250,000 automated phone calls.
A survey by the Local Government Association shows that an overwhelming majority of elections officers support a ban on the sale of the Edited Electoral Register.
Information Commissioner Richard Thomas has recommended abolishing the Edited Electoral Register. If accepted, local councils will no longer be legally obliged to sell voters' name and address to junk mailers.