Two CASL Fines in One Month

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has issued two fines over the spam of this month.

1. Compu-Finder (http://www.crtc.gc.ca/eng/archive/2015/vt150305.htm) -$1,100,000

Compu-Finder, a company offering training products based in Quebec, was fined $1.1M by the CRTC for flagrant violation of the Canadian Anti-Spam Laws.  To put the fine into context:

  • Compu-Finder sent commercial messages to recipients who did not provide consent in 3 different patterns, resulting in 3 separate violations of Section 6(1)(a) violation;
  • the unsubscribe mechanism in the commercial electronic messages sent did not work properly, resulting in a Section 6(2)(c) violation;
  • the unsubscribe mechanism in the commercial electronic message was not valid for a minimum of 60 days, resulting in a Section 11(2) violation; and
  • Compu-Finder did not unsubscribe the users without delay, and in any case, within 10 business days of the user’s indication that they wished to subscribe, resulting in a Section 11(3) violation,

and not to mention that at one point, about 26% of spam messages reported to CRTC’s Spam Reporting Centre related to Compu-Finder.

2. Plenty of Fish (http://www.crtc.gc.ca/eng/archive/2015/vt150325.htm) – $48,000

Unlike Compu-Finder, Plenty of Fish took a more cooperative approach.  While they violated CASL as the unsubscribe mechanism in their commercial electronic messages to users were not clearly and prominently set out, Plenty of Fish entered into an undertaking with the CRTC to comply with CASL.  This, in part, explains the modest fine as compared to that of Compu-Finder.

According to Section 20(4) of CASL, the maximum fine for individuals is $1M, and the maximum fine for corporations is $10M.

Posted on by Sam Posted in Uncategorized

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