What Are Opt-In and Privacy Laws in North America and Europe?

Before you even start to consider installing opt-in measures and privacy laws one needs to understand what opt-in is all about. Opting is basically the process under which users take affirmative action when offering their consent. The most technique in which opt-in methods can be implemented is through unticked checkboxes. Whenever users are presented with the option, they often take necessary action to denote their consent. It can be used in a variety of situations such as getting consent to send emails, use cookies or even allow users to agree to your legal policies. Whenever a user registers an account, they are given the privilege to opt in to receive email notifications and agree to the terms of use as well as privacy policy.

How to use opt in

There is a very big difference between opt-in and opt-out. Opt-in is a very integral aspect of privacy law compliance. Online data protection has been a great challenge for many decades hence it’s a great idea to get the consent of legal policies as well as terms and conditions through the use of opt-in. there are certain laws that mandate businesses to receive user consent in their privacy policy by taking affirmative action before collecting personal data.

One of the best ways of explaining your privacy policy is through the use of a consent banner. The banner appears just immediately the user visits the website and it directs them to their privacy policy asking them to take an action.

Opt ins are required by law

It is a requirement by law that all websites should provide users with the option of opting in and out of email communication or agreeing to the privacy and policy terms. There are over 100 billion spams which are sent everyday with unsolicited emails gaining popularity as a tool for fraudulent activities. Businesses have to represent their intentions and identity in an explicit manner and most importantly they need to provide a way for recipients to opt-out.


United States have enacted the CAN-SPAM Act which controls the assault of non-solicited pornographic and marketing tools. It covers commercial email messages with the aim of advertising and promoting commercial products and services. Europe have a general data protection regulation which was enacted in 2016. It regulates how organizations gather, use and retain personal data which includes email addresses. This applies to all organizations that process personal data for residents of EU regardless of their location. Canada’s anti-spam regulation was enacted in 2010 and covers all commercial and electronic messages which are sent by non-profit organizations. Commercial electronic messages are often described as messages that have their purpose.

The opt-in legislations in the United States allows direct email marketing to be sent to anyone without prior permission unless the recipient explicitly request that they cease. In Europe messages can only be sent to recipients who have given their prior consent and the same laws apply in Canada.