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Double opt-in in email marketing: not anonymous!

Introduction to the double opt-in procedure

The double opt-in procedure is an essential component of email marketing that requires the explicit consent of the recipient to receive newsletters or advertising emails. This process takes place in two steps: First, registration via an online form and then confirmation by e-mail. This method is not only effective in securing consent in accordance with the requirements of competition law and the GDPR, but also helps to improve the quality of email traffic and strengthen the trust of recipients. It makes it possible to create precise and reliable mailing lists, which is essential for a targeted and efficient communication strategy.

Legal challenges and court decisions

However, recent court decisions, in particular by the Berlin Regional Court, have raised legal challenges for the double opt-in procedure. In one specific case, the concealment of the sender in a double opt-in confirmation email was classified as an infringement of competition law (Section 7 (2) No. 3b UWG). This represents a new twist, as in the past the focus was primarily on the content of the confirmation emails and not on the identity of the sender. Other courts, such as the Higher Regional Court of Celle and the Higher Regional Court of Düsseldorf, have ruled differently in similar cases, which leads to a certain degree of legal uncertainty in practice.

Best practices for secure email marketing

In view of these legal uncertainties, it is all the more important for companies to follow best practices in email marketing. It is recommended that the confirmation emails are designed clearly and unambiguously as part of the double opt-in procedure, without any advertising content. In addition, the identity of the sender should be clearly recognizable in order to avoid any appearance of a violation of the legal requirements. Companies should regularly inform themselves about current case law and adapt their practices accordingly in order to stay on the safe side.


Compliance with legal requirements in email marketing, particularly in the context of the double opt-in procedure, remains an ongoing challenge for companies. The latest rulings show that it is not only the content but also the form of communication that is decisive. It is therefore essential to regularly update your own practices in the light of current case law.

Marian Härtel

Marian Härtel

Marian Härtel is a lawyer and entrepreneur specializing in copyright law, competition law and IT/IP law, with a focus on games, esports, media and blockchain.


03322 5078053