Accounting Service Providers (ASP) Partners, to help you understand what Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) entails and how it will affect your communications, we have prepared a brief overview for you.
What is CASL
On July 1, 2014, the Canada Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) will take effect. This legislation is being put forth specifically to limit the spam messages that Canadians will receive via electronic means. CASL therefore puts strict restraints on businesses in regards to the people they are allowed to send Commercial Electronic Messages (CEMs) to and what sort of content must be included in these messages.
What does this mean for businesses that send out information to their customers? Under CASL, a business must receive consent of some type in order to legally continue to contact that customer. CASL distinguished two types of consent, implied and express.
Implied consent will apply to existing business relationships, personal relationships and cases where the recipient has disclosed their electronic address directly to the sender and has not stated that they do not wish to receive CEMs. However, implied consent will expire after a period of time of no commercial transactions between the business and the customer.
To obtain express consent, the sender must receive a confirmation of the recipient’s interest through a positive action. For example, a pre-checked box will not be a legitimate way of receiving express consent. The individual must actively confirm their consent by checking the box themselves.
Even after express consent has been established, all CEMs must continue to contain contact information for the business and an option to unsubscribe from further messages or notifications in the future.
Things to remember about CASL (Key Points):
– The legislation will take effect July 1st, 2014
– “Commercial Electronic Messages” refers not only to e-mail but to all electronic communication, including to text messages and communication via social media websites.
– Businesses sending out CEMs must have acquired either implied or express consent from the recipients.
– Disobeying the rules put forth by CASL will result in fines ranging from $1 million for an individual to $10 million for businesses.
Disclaimer: This is not legal advice, it is merely information put forth to help you better understand the new rules and regulations that will be applied to Commercial Electronic Mail of all types. If you have any questions about our information or your interpretation of it, please consult a legal professional.