No one likes unsolicited telephone calls. In response to the
nuisance of such calls the Government has set up a National Do Not
Call list and a regulatory regime managed by the Canadian
Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission's (CRTC).
The regime operates under the Unsolicited Telecommunications
That system is sometimes criticized but in fact it can work. It
works if people register under the National Do Not Call list and
then file complaints when that registration is not respected under
the law. Telemarketers are required by law to subscribe to the
National Do Not Call list and are obligated to download updates and
to ensure numbers on the list are not called.
Of course, individuals should appreciate that registration does
not prohibit all calls and there are exceptions for registered
charities, newspapers and political parties and candidates.
As example of how the system works occurred recently when, on
March 10, 2016, the CRTC issued Notices of Violation to three
Canadian-based companies and two Indian-based call centres alleging
that the five companies failed to respect the Unsolicited
The Notices of Violation issued to the two India-based call
centres were sent, in an example of international collaboration in
this case, to the Indian Central Bureau of Investigation for
service on the two Indian companies.
The CRTC took this action after an investigation resulting from
complaints that Canadians had filed.
The telemarketers had made calls to phone numbers registered on
the National Do Not Call List. It was alleged that the callers
falsely identified themselves as representatives of the Government
of Canada, U.S. Homeland Security or Microsoft. It was alleged that
the callers were seeking to sell anti-virus software and further it
is alleged that in some calls the caller sought to obtain remote
access to the owner's computer "under the pretext of
removing viruses and other malicious software".
In this case penalties totaling $643,500 were imposed by the
CRTC. The parties served will have 30 days to pay the penalty or
file representations with the CRTC.
Marketing businesses should remain aware of the Unsolicited
Telecommunications Rules and take steps to ensure that their
marketing campaigns remain in compliance with that program.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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Software license agreements generally require the customer to pay fees for the software license and related services, which fees are usually based upon the duration of the license and the manner in which the customer is allowed to use the software, together with applicable taxes and withholdings.
In less than nine months, on July 1, 2017, persons affected by a contravention of Canada's anti-spam legislation will be able to invoke a private right of action to sue for compensation and potentially substantial statutory damages.
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