CASL, Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation, which establishes rules for sending commercial electronic messages (CEMs), will takes effect on July 1, 2014.

Are you clear about all the new rules? Are you confident that you email campaigns will comply with the requirements of the new law?

Here are the basic requirements a CEM sender has to meet:

  • Have clear consent before sending a CEM, your audience must be opt-in.
  • Have an easy to find, functional “Unsubscribe” mechanism. The link to unsubscribe must be easy to find in your messages.
  • Include your contact information, make sure your audience knows who is sending the message.

To whom does it apply? CASL applies to any CEMs if

  • the sending computer system is located in Canada at the relevant time;
  • the receiving person is in Canada at the relevant time; or
  • the sending person is acting under the direction of a person who is in Canada at the time when they give the directions.

Are there any exceptions? It does not apply to

  • Closed platforms, for example, social media channels.
  • Limited access accounts, e.g., online banking.
  • Fundraising messages from Canadian charity and political parties.

Penalty for non-compliance:

  • Up to $1 million for individuals
  • Up to $10 million for organizations

Who enforces CASL?

  • Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC)
  • The Competition Bureau of Canada
  • Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada

What actions should be taken?

  • Check for Canadian addresses in your mailing lists
  • Determine if you have consent for them, or if you are exempted.
  • Determine if you need to obtain consent or stop sending to those addresses.
  • Take actions.

For more information, you can consult Government of Canada website:

https://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/ecic-ceac.nsf/eng/gv00521.html