Legal basis for processing personal data are performance of contract, legal obligations compliance, protection of vital interests, controller's legitimate interests, and data subject's consent.
Processing shall be lawful only if and to the extent that at least one of the following applies: the data subject has given consent to the processing of his or her personal data for one or more specific purposes; processing is necessary for the performance of a contract to which the data subject is party or in order to take steps at the request of the data subject prior to entering into a contract; processing is necessary for compliance with a legal obligation to which the controller is subject; processing is necessary in order to protect the vital interests of the data subject or of another natural person; processing is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in the controller; processing is necessary for the purposes of the legitimate interests pursued by the controller or by a third party, except where such interests are overridden by the interests or fundamental rights and freedoms of the data subject which require protection of personal data, in particular where the data subject is a child. Point (f) of the first subparagraph shall not apply to processing carried out by public authorities in the performance of their tasks.
Member States may maintain or introduce more specific provisions to adapt the application of the rules of this Regulation with regard to processing for compliance with points (c) and (e) of paragraph 1 by determining more precisely specific requirements for the processing and other measures to ensure lawful and fair processing including for other specific processing situations as provided for in Chapter IX.
The basis for the processing referred to in point (c) and (e) of paragraph 1 shall be laid down by: Union law; or Member State law to which the controller is subject. The purpose of the processing shall be determined in that legal basis or, as regards the processing referred to in point (e) of paragraph 1, shall be necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in the controller. That legal basis may contain specific provisions to adapt the application of rules of this Regulation, inter alia: the general conditions governing the lawfulness of processing by the controller; the types of data which are subject to the processing; the data subjects concerned; the entities to, and the purposes for which, the personal data may be disclosed; the purpose limitation; storage periods; and processing operations and processing procedures, including measures to ensure lawful and fair processing such as those for other specific processing situations as provided for in Chapter IX. The Union or the Member State law shall meet an objective of public interest and be proportionate to the legitimate aim pursued.
Where the processing for a purpose other than that for which the personal data have been collected is not based on the data subject’s consent or on a Union or Member State law which constitutes a necessary and proportionate measure in a democratic society to safeguard the objectives referred to in Article 23(1), the controller shall, in order to ascertain whether processing for another purpose is compatible with the purpose for which the personal data are initially collected, take into account, inter alia: any link between the purposes for which the personal data have been collected and the purposes of the intended further processing; the context in which the personal data have been collected, in particular regarding the relationship between data subjects and the controller; the nature of the personal data, in particular whether special categories of personal data are processed, pursuant to Article 9, or whether personal data related to criminal convictions and offences are processed, pursuant to Article 10; the possible consequences of the intended further processing for data subjects; the existence of appropriate safeguards, which may include encryption or pseudonymisation.
Groupe Rossel & Cie, a press group, was found to have unlawfully obtained user consent for the management of non-essential cookies on its websites through the ‘further browsing’ technique, which unlawfully coupled the users' expression of cookie consent with the choice to continue to the website.
The Belgian DPA fined the private company targeting pregnant mothers. The company through its marketing campaign collected personal data without informing clearly of the processing. Despite withdrawing consent, the complainant was contacted by third parties for its promotions wherein it technically made it difficult to withdraw consent and stop receiving unwanted phone calls from the defendant's partners.
Caixabank Bank was fined by the Spanish DPA for using pre-ticked boxes to request consent for processing personal data, and charging customers who did not accept the terms a monthly maintenance fee of €5.
The Spanish DPA imposed a fine on the owner of a commercial website for processing personal data without proper consent, using unnecessary third-party cookies that could not be rejected, and failing to provide clear information about the cookies in use in the Cookies policy.
The Danish DPA (Datatilsynet) found that a website's cookie consent mechanism was inadequate, as it only provided an "Allow all cookies" option, making continued use of the website equal to consent. The DPA clarified that this approach to marketing cookies was not in compliance with the law.
The Spanish DPA (AEPD) fined Asociación de Víctimas por Arbitrariedades Judiciales (JAVA) for publishing illegal recordings on its website and dropping Google Analytics cookies without user consent. Additionally, there was no second layer on the cookie banner enabling the user to refuse to consent to all cookies.
The Belgian Data Protection Authority (APD/GBA) imposed a fine on the defendant for placing cookies without prior consent and obtained consent via pre-ticked boxes. Additionally, their policies lacked transparent information on data subject's rights, their exercise, and legal basis for processing.
Wind Tre was fined by the Garante for not allowing customers to withdraw consent or object to marketing data processing, lacking transparency in data information, using a single button for multiple consents, using small prints, bundled consents, and conducting unlawful data collection and unauthorised marketing.
The Spanish DPA fined a hospital for obtaining consent through pre-ticked boxes for commercial communication and data processing and failure to timely provide a copy of the form.
The Danish DPA found Den Blå Avis at fault for using a single 'accept' button for processing data for different purposes, disclosing data to third parties without sufficient notice, and not providing a link or menu for the purpose of data sharing.
Orange România SA was found responsible for using pre-ticked boxes as a form of obtaining consent from customers for storing copies of their identity documents, which does not constitute active consent.
The Danish DPA expressed criticism against a controller for using multiple layers to collect consent, not providing adequate information and using colors (greyed options) to influence user choice.
CNIL found Google liable for providing information in a fragmented and generic manner, and for using pre-ticked boxes for personalization settings of the account.
The EDPB fined Meta for the providing lack of processing contact information on children’s business accounts and using ‘public by default’-settings for child users.
The news service was fined by the Hungarian DPA where the controller's newsletter subscribers were automatically enrolled in electronic marketing and a prize draw without adequate information or the ability to provide specific consent.
The Norwegian DPA held the controller liable for direct marketing purposes to a data subject despite of having previously objected to such processing.
Canary Click Consulting website was held liable for failure to provide information about the storage or deletion of their data and for not providing an option to reject cookies.
The Belgian DPA issues a reprimand to a government agency for failing to provide website visitors with clear information and a means to refuse non-strictly necessary cookies.