Canada has An Opt-in Régime and a new Anti-spam Law

 Return Path 

The King is dead, Long live the Queen.
On Dec 15, Canada’s anti-spam bill (Bill C-28) was signed into law. For all marketers sending email into Canada, knowingly or not, this law renders CAN SPAM and its incumbent opt-out permission obsolete.

This is an exciting game-changer for the industry, and one poised to put a major hurt on bad players.

Any company who sends to Canada, Canadians, or computers located in Canada is subject to hefty fines if they do so in an opt-out fashion. Laws can and will be applied across borders, so we encourage anyone doing international business to begin taking this issue very seriously.

Don’t panic.
C-28 is typically Canadian, polite and reasonable. There are grandfather clauses and other carve-outs in the law that makes allowances for the types of interactions we all undertake on a daily basis. Much of what is very familiar to marketers under CAN SPAM is replicated with small changes under C-28.

Next steps
In January, a set of regulations will be published in the Canada Gazette defining how the new law will be applied. We will of course share the specifics of the new law on our blog when the information becomes available.

After that, the heavy lifting (if any) is up to you.

Return Path along with Thindata 1:1, the Law Office of Kris Klein, and CAUCE has written a guide on how to become compliant with the new law. Furthermore, C-28 doesn’t reportedly go into effect until September 2011 so there is plenty of time to change email practices that need adjustments.

As well, Return Path’s Professional Services department is in the midst of developing several C-28 compliance packages should you need assistance in getting up to speed. Drop us a line at rpinfo@returnpath.net if you’d like more information.

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