New Retail Council of Canada Anti-Spam Resource Guide.
Produced exclusively for retail members of RCC, this easy to use resource guide and compliance checklist will help your company meet the requirements of the new anti-spam regulations.
Are you ready for the new anti-spam legislation coming into force on July 1?
If you communicate with your customers electronically or engage in online marketing, this new legislation will have a significant impact on your business.
Make sure you're prepared. RCC members have exclusive access to an Anti-Spam resource guide and compliance checklist available on the Members only portal of the RCC website.
Download the Anti-Spam Resource Guide (members only)
Not a member? Contact our Membership Team to access this and other great member benefits today!
The top 10 things retailers need to know about Canada’s new anti-spam legislation (CASL)
Retailers will not be able to use pre-checked boxes or other “opt-out” mechanisms as ways to collect express consent.
- Canada’s new anti-spam law comes into effect July 1, 2014.
- The law places restrictions on the sending of commercial electronic communications and dictates what information must be included in any electronic message.
- The law may apply to the following communication tools: emails, text messages, instant messages, Facebook messages directed to a particular user, and other social media tools whose purpose is to encourage customers to purchase your goods or services.
- Retailers must have consent from the consumer prior to sending certain electronic communications (referred to as “Commercial Electronic Messages” or “CEMS” in the legislation). The legislation sets out two forms of consent that are acceptable.
- One form of consent is implied consent, which means the customer has not specifically agreed to receive emails or other electronic messages from your business, but you have an existing relationship with the customer. Consent may be implied where the customer has purchased a product or service from your store in the preceding two years or made an inquiry within the preceding six months.
Another form of consent is express consent, which means the customer has specifically agreed to receive electronic messages from your business. Examples of how companies may obtain express consent include;
- Allowing customers to sign up for emails, newsletters, etc.;
- Signing up in conjunction with a coupon offer or contest (as long as contest entry is not conditional on signing up for such communications);
- Having a sign up process at the point of sale; and
- Asking for permission over the phone.
- Retailers must keep records of their customers who have agreed to receive electronic messages and be able to prove that consent (whether express or implied) was received.
- The law dictates what must be included in messages to customers. This includes clearly providing contact information for the entity sending the message and an easy to use no cost unsubscribe mechanism.
- The law also applies to electronic messages originating outside Canada.
- Businesses and individuals may be subject to significant fines of up to $1 million for individuals or $10 million for a corporation for non-compliance.
What should I do before July 1, 2014 and how is RCC helping my business?
- The most important step is to consider asking all of the customers in your database to provide their express consent to continue to receive emails and other messages from your business. A template message is included in RCC’s Anti-Spam Resource Guide.
- Ensure you have a system in place to record express consents received from your customers.
- If your business intends to rely on implied consent, ensure that you can track customer activity e.g. purchases or inquiries that will allow your business to demonstrate that you have implied consent.
- Retail Council has prepared an Anti-Spam Resource Guide. This Guide, which was prepared by our legal partners at Davies Ward Phillips and Vineberg, is available free of charge through your membership in RCC. Although the Resource Guide does not constitute legal advice and should not be used as a substitute for legal advice for any particular situation, it does provide a detailed overview that we hope will be of assistance to RCC’s members.
For further information, please contact RCC’s membership team at 1-888-373-8245 or [email protected]