Top tips: Keeping clear on clients comms

ARE YOU CURRENTLY SENDING NEWSLETTERS OR OTHER E-COMMUNICATIONS TO YOUR CLIENTS?

If so – this is information you need to know!

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) is the independent regulator and supervisor of broadcasting and telecommunications in Canada. As part of their commitment to reducing the harmful effects of spam and other potential pressures consumers may feel from electronic commerce, there is a new law coming into effect.

As of July 1, 2014 the CRTC is introducing Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL), which is a new legislation in Canada that will put in place more strict parameters for corporations contacting consumers by electronic communications (ie email, text, digital pictures, etc). Being one of our valued broker partners, and a business-to-consumer operating company, we want to ensure you have the correct information to abide by the terms of the new legislation, while still being able to communication with your clients competitively in the marketplace. These changes will allow for a safer and more secure online marketplace.

WHEN SENDING COMMERCIAL ELECTRONIC MAIL (CEM)* THERE ARE 3 SIMPLE RULES TO FOLLOW:

  1. Consent: you must have expressed or implied consent to send a message.
  2. Identification: you must clearly and simply identify yourselves and anyone else on whose behalf the message is sent.
  3. Unsubscribe mechanism: in every message you send, you must provide a way for recipients to unsubscribe from receiving messages in the future.

*CEM can be defined as any electronic message that encourages participation in a commercial activity, regardless of whether there is an expectation of profit. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Sending email messages with the purpose of enhancing the relationship of a merchant with its current or previous customers, to encourage customer loyalty and repeat business
  • Sending email messages with the purpose of acquiring new customers or convincing current customers to purchase something
  • Sending messages through social networks for commercial purposes

HOW TO PREPARE:

  1. Review your processes:
    • Who are you sending messages to?
    • What is the content of these messages?
    • Do you have proper consent?
    • How are you going to prove you have consent?
    • How are you going to manage requests to unsubscribe?
    • Is your staff properly trained?
  2. What you can do now:
    • Get consent for your current mailing lists if you’re not certain they’re covered
    • Start keeping records of consent
  3. What you must do as of July 1:
    • Start including prescribed information in your CEMs unless an exception applies
    • Stop sending electronic messages as your first point of contact
    • Stop sending CEMs without consent

LEGISLATION EXCEPTIONS

There are several exceptions under CASL.  View all exceptions here.

For more information on how your brokerage can adapt their e-communications to this new anti-spam legislation, for information to share with your clients on how they can protect themselves, or to sign up for regular CASL updates, please visit The Government of Canada's Anti-Spam Legislation website.