The Information Commissioner’s Office has fined commercial pregnancy and parenting club Bounty some £400,000 for illegally sharing personal details of more than 14 million people.
The organisation, which dishes out advice to expectant and inexperienced parents, has faced criticism over the tactics it uses to sign up new members and was the subject of a campaign to boot its reps from maternity wards.
the business had also worked as a data brokering service until April last year, distributing data to third parties to then pester unsuspecting folk with electronic direct marketing. By sharing this information and not being transparent about its uses while it was extracting the stuff, Bounty broke the Data Protection Act 1998.
Bounty shared roughly 34.4 million records from June 2017 to April 2018 with credit reference and marketing agencies. Acxiom, Equifax, Indicia and Sky were the four biggest of the 39 companies that Bounty told the ICO it sold stuff to.
This data included details of new mother and mothers-to-be but also of very young children’s birth dates and their gender.