Key things you need to know about the Canadian Anti-Spam Law

If you are not familiar with CASL

Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) is a Canadian law preventing commercial electronic messages (CEM) from being sent out without obtaining prior consent from the recipient. After going through a few amendments since its introduction in April 2009, it is now in full-force since July 1st, 2014. 

The goal of CASL is to reduce the amount of unwelcomed commercial emails Canadians receive. It aims to create a safe and secure online platform and has compelled businesses to follow the best practices in email and other social and digital media marketing. 

CASL applies to commercial emails, SMS and social media. It includes transactional messages like welcome messages or confirmation emails. 

For those who do not comply with SPAM, there is a fine of up to $10 million CAD for corporations to $1 million CAD for individuals, imprisonment and liability of the business owner if employees fail to comply with. 

Quick Fact: For businesses complying with CASL, the open rate and click-through rates of email marketing campaigns
have increased and bounce rates have dropped. @Xeomarketing                                      Click to Tweet

What do telecommunication & technology companies need to know?

As a telecommunications & technology company, you may have much easier access to personal data of your clients as such you also have more responsibility towards data protection and data privacy. There are three general requirements for sending a Commercial Electronic Message (CEM):

1Obtain Consent
2Provide Identification document
3Unsubscribe mechanism 
how to grow your email marketing list and comply to Canadian spam law

1. Obtain consent

You must have express or implied consent from all your contacts to receive Commercial Electronic Messages (CEM).

Express Consent:

Express consent means that the contact has given your organization permission to send them CEMs in written or orally. Express consent must always come from an opt-in mechanism which can include sign-up forms and landing pages. This form of consent never expires. 

If there is ever a dispute, the onus is on your organization to prove express consent to receive CEMs. So we recommend you to track:

  1. How consent was obtained?
  2. When it was obtained?
  3. Why was it obtained?
  4. The manner/ way in which it was obtained.

Implied Consent: 

If you have an existing business relationship with a contact, you have implied consent to send CEMs. An existing business relationship is defined as:

  1. A business relationship arising from the purchase of a product, goods, or service within a 2 year period,
  2. Or arising from an inquiry or application within 6 months immediately before the date on which the CEM was sent.
  3. Implied consent is no longer valid after the expiry of 6 months of inquiry or the 2 years of purchase. Express consent will be required after the expiry. 

2. Provide identification information: 

  • You must identify your organization in the electronic message as well as anyone else on whose behalf the CEM is being sent. 
  • A mailing address and a telephone number or a website address of the person or organization has to be included. 
  • In case of messages like text messages where all the information cannot be provided, a link directing the customers to a website has to be inserted. 

3. Unsubscribe mechanism: 

  • The CEM must contain an Unsubscribe mechanism in every message sent. This is in the form on an Unsubscribe link present either at the beginning or at the end of the email. 
  • The process to unsubscribe must be sent using the same electronic means by which the message was sent. 
  • The unsubscribe mechanism should be easy and simple to use. 
  • The email sender must ensure that an unsubscribe request is addressed within 10 business days.

As you prepare to comply with CASL, what can XEO do to help you?

  • Analyze your current strategy to obtain consents, unsubscribe mechanisms, ECMs and identify the communications gaps to meet CASL.
  • Ensure all your present marketing communications and strategies comply with the CASL.
  • Create your email marketing campaigns in a way that builds your brand, email list while staying compliant with the Canadian law and Candian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission(CRTC) regulations. CRTC is the governing organization for CASL. 
“DON’T BE A SPAMMER,” Let the customers select ‘Yes’ or ‘No’
to receive communications.  Click to Tweet 

Listen to your consumers. It is important to create meaningful communications and avoid spamming people to ‘make your numbers’. For more information on how Xeo Marketing can help you with CASL compliance, and boost your email marketing campaign, get in touch. 

Here are answers to frequently asked questions related to Canadian Anti-Spam Law.

how to grow your email list while complying to spam laws
Neha Madiya

Neha Madiya

Neha Madiya is a Content Strategist and a Copywriter creating intentional content for her target audience. She is on a mission to make monotonous business blogs sparkle. Neha is the Book Editor of "My Failed Boss", a lavish web researcher and a travel enthusiast. Her mantra in life is, "Knowledge is best used when shared".

Leave a Reply