As a small business owner, what have you done to comply with Canada’s Anti-Spam Law (CASL) that comes into effect on July 1, 2014? Happy Canada Day!! Surveys completed thus far reveal that the majority of small businesses have done little to nothing to comply with or are even aware of the CASL.
Surveys disclose that only 15% of small business owners are even aware of the new law’s requirements and, even more disconcerting, a majority, that is 65% of small business owners have done nothing whatsoever to meet the CASL requirements.
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) has stated that it has been contacted by many small businesses who are having experiencing anxiety when it comes to understanding the CASL and even more confusion as to what they should be doing to getting ready for the new law, and that the support these businesses have received from the CRTC has been less than stellar.
Without a doubt the majority of small businesses support the concept and implementation of reducing spam, however, the current rules about the CASL need to be made small business-friendly and implementation of the mechanisms need to be conveyed more clearly so that they are understood and met appropriately.
CFIB members support efforts that provide education rather than enforcement, and that providing exemptions where these rules are not workable, should be made applicable.
The CASL requires that all businesses see consent – either express or implied – from everyone they send emails to prior to actually sending business emails.
Express consent is defined as someone having given their approval either verbally or in writing, to receive emails from a specific business. Any contacts who have given consent before the July 1 deadline are deemed acceptable. CASL will require evidence of this consent.
Implied consent is when a business has an existing business relationship with the recipient of the email relative to the nature of the email which, for all intents and purposes, has a specific criteria upon which to judge their relationship.
The CFIB has created a tip sheet for small businesses (http://www.cfib-fcei.ca/english/article/6267-does-your-business-send-ema...) which is designed to help small businesses get ready for the changes.