November 30, 2010 Michael Bickerton
FISA stands for Fighting the Internet and Wireless Spam Act, introduced in Canada by the Government in May 2010.
FISA establishes new requirements for anyone using electronic messaging for marketing in Canada. It will apply to any and all forms of electronic messages sent for marketing and advertising purposes. As such, FISA includes email, SMS, Instant messaging, social media and social networking. Additionally, the legislation deals with issues such as malware, phishing, pharming and other Internet scam type activities.
The legislation impacts anyone and everyone sending a commercial electronic message (CEM) to or from someone in Canada. So it’s wide ranging in its scope.
The main requirement is the “opt-in” consent. Before marketing companies can send a message (CEM), the long established requirement for opt-in consent under PIPEDA is required.
There are a few exceptions or areas where consent is implied in FISA Bill C28, as noted below:
1) The sender has an existing business relationship or non-business relationship with the recipient
2) The recipient has published their electronic address (email address) in a prominent manner
3) The recipient has provided their email address direct to the sender
Another key issue is identification. As a sender, you must clearly identify yourself and your company, as well provide contact information and a functional unsubscribe mechanism.
Lots of changes, we recommend as your digital agency that you spend a few minutes reviewing the FISA legislation, you can link here.
Michael Bickerton, Raven5 Ltd, November 2010