LinkedIn’s processing on the basis of legitimate interests

Last updated: 10 months ago
When a company or organization uses your personal data, it must have a legal basis to do so under data protection laws. We will only collect and process personal data about you where we have a lawful basis to do so. At LinkedIn, the legal basis for processing your personal data may vary depending on the purpose for which we are using the data. For example, in some cases we obtain your consent, in others we are legally obligated to process your data for a certain purpose and in some cases, we rely on our legitimate interests. Below we have explained when we rely on legitimate interests and why.
When does LinkedIn rely on legitimate interests?
In some cases, the collection and processing of your personal data is based on our legitimate interests or the legitimate interests of third parties (e.g., employers or LinkedIn customers), provided that such processing shall not outweigh your rights and freedoms. They can include commercial interests, the interests of our members or broader societal benefits.
We rely on the legitimate interests legal basis when processing your personal data to:
  • Protect you, us, or others from threats (such as security threats, scraping or fraud), to meet our legitimate interests and those of Members, Visitors and customers in keeping our services secure and protecting Members’ and Visitors’ personal data;
  • Comply with non-EU laws that apply to us, to meet our legitimate interests in avoiding sanctions for non-compliance, and to advance the legitimate interests of our wider community (including Members, Visitors, employers and customers) in ensuring that we comply with those laws;
  • Enable or administer our business, such as for quality control, preparing consolidated reports on our business, and customer service, to meet our legitimate interests in running our business efficiently and effectively, and to fulfill the expectations of our Members, Visitors, and customers about the high quality of our services;
  • Manage corporate transactions, such as mergers, acquisitions or sales, to support our legitimate interests in growing, strengthening and otherwise managing our business and assets;
  • Understand and improve our business or customer relationships generally, to meet our legitimate interests in enhancing and growing our business, meeting the needs of our customers, and ensuring that our Members, customers and visitors receive the best possible service from LinkedIn;
  • Enable our Members and Visitors to connect with each other, find jobs and economic opportunity, express opinions, exchange information, and conduct business, to support our legitimate interests in fulfilling our mission to connect the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful.
In addition to the above, we rely on the legitimate interest legal basis to display certain ads, and to provide analytics to our customers:
  • If you are a LinkedIn member, we rely on legitimate interest to use personal data you provide when you use our services to show you ads, such as job ads, that we think will interest you. To do this, we use the information that you provide on your LinkedIn profile as well as information about your activity on LinkedIn (such as your connections, the companies you follow and the content you engage with) as well as data about your use of some of the other services provided by us or our affiliates, including Microsoft. We use this information to make inferences about you (for example, if you follow different technology companies and have many connections who work in the technology sector, we may infer that you are interested in technology). We then show you ads for jobs, products or services that are relevant to people with those interests. We also compare your profile to that of other Members and we show you ads for jobs, products or services that are relevant to Members with similar profiles. Doing this means that the ads you see are more likely to contain content you are interested in, which advances our legitimate interests and those of our Members in ensuring we can offer LinkedIn as a free service, and to meet LinkedIn’s customers’ interests in ensuring they can advertise jobs, products or services to Members that will be interested in them. When we use personal data provided by third parties such as LinkedIn customers to show you ads, we require opt-in consent from residents of the European Union, EEA, or Switzerland. You can control how we use your personal data for this type of advertising here.
  • We also use your personal data to create aggregated reports about how Members interact with our customers’ websites and ads on and off LinkedIn. We count the number of Members with certain characteristics that engaged with our customers’ content, and we aggregate that data to provide customers with insights. For example, we might inform a customer that 500 Members who are lawyers visited their website in the past month, and that 800 Members who are accountants clicked on one of their ads. (Our reports do not identify or single out specific individual Members.). This supports customers’ interests in understanding the categories of professionals that engage with their content without identifying individual members. In turn, this helps customers adapt their content to make them more suitable for the types of professionals they are interested in connecting with, while having a minimal impact on our members’ privacy. You can control how LinkedIn uses your personal data to create these insights here.
You have the right to object to our use of personal data for any of these purposes, either by using the controls described above, or by contacting LinkedIn. You can contact us here or otherwise as set out in our Privacy Policy.
You can learn more about our User Agreement at any time.