Certain provisions of Canada's Anti-Spam legislation ("CASL") will come into force on July 1, 2014 and govern how businesses can communicate with Canadian recipients. CASL compliance should be made a priority for any businesses operating in the Canadian marketplace that, among other things, send commercial electronic messages ("CEMs") to Canadian recipients. CEMs include (but are not limited to) emails, text messages, instant messages and certain forms of social media. Any organization that sends electronic communications, such as email and text messages, will likely be affected by CASL and there are significant penalties for non-compliance (including Administrative Monetary Penalties of up to $10 million for businesses and $1 million for individuals).
Organizations should ensure all management and employees are familiar with the provisions of CASL through the review of online resources such as websites set-up by the Government of Canada to help businesses and individuals become CASL compliant (see here), immediately begin the process of obtaining any necessary express consents or otherwise determine what exemptions are or may be applicable.