The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission
(CRTC) issued an enforcement advisory to both businesses and
individuals that send commercial electronic messages (CEMs) to keep
records of consent. The CRTC reminded senders of CEMs that section
13 of Canada's anti-spam legislation (CASL) places the onus on
the sender to prove they have consent to send every single CEM.
The advisory made a point to note the CRTC has observed
businesses and individuals unable to demonstrate they have obtained
consent before sending CEMs. Failure to meet record keeping
requirements has been alleged in recent CRTC enforcement decisions
against organizations. However, today's enforcement advisory
may suggest the CRTC is finding record keeping to be a widespread
concern, warranting this advisory.
Record keeping is one of the most contested provisions under
CASL as the financial, organizational and technical burden weighs
on senders to meet the high record-keeping standards set by the
CRTC. Having the record keeping requirements on the CRTC's
radar adds further urgency to ensure a sender's compliance
program is sufficient.
The CRTC emphasized in its advisory that good record-keeping
practices can assist senders establish a due diligence defense in
the case of a violation under CASL. Violations of CASL may result
penalties of up to CAD $1,000,000 for individuals, and up to CAD
$10,000,000 for organizations.
The CRTC reiterated its guidance that record-keeping should
All evidence of express or implied consent from consumers who
agree to receive CEMs. Evidence can be in various forms such as
audio, electronic or paper.
The procedures and methods through which senders obtain
The sender's CASL policies and procedures
All unsubscribe requests and subsequent actions taken
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