On July 1, 2014, Canada began enforcing one of the world s toughest anti-spam laws. Known as Canada s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL), this law is intended to stop spam email from occurring in Canada, but has wide ranging effects on all electronic interactions. In June 2017, this guide was updated by Ryan J.Black, of the Canadian law firm McMillan LLP, to reflect new developments in the implementation of CASL. Any company, domestic or international, communicating by email in Canada, dealing with email transmission data in Canada, or installing software in Canada needs to be in compliance to avoid severe penalties of up to $10 million.
Internet Law Essentials: Canada s Anti-Spam Law provides a comprehensive analysis of the new CASL regulations. The guide also includes useful checklists to help simplify the audit and compliance process.
CASL applies to three broad categories of electronic commercial activities:
- Sending commercial electronic messages (CEMs)
- Altering transmission data or electronic messages
- Installing computer programs on another person s computer system.
All companies communicating by email with customers in Canada must comply with the new CASL legislation, and many roles are affected:
- Legal Counsel should review the Act s requirements and continue to monitor any further guidelines released by the government.
- Sales/Marketing Executives must assess the impact of CASL on their digital marketing strategies, especially email and social media.
- IT Professionals need to assess how the legislation affects downloadable programs and software.
- Risk Management Officers need to calculate the risks of CASL non-compliance on the business and work to avoid these risks.
- Auditors must evaluate CASL compliance once in place.